Sep 14, 2010

Face to Face in a Negotiation

On the 2nd day of Kakunodate's Yama Festival, all the 18 groups of floats are to perform for the Lord of Satake-- called Satake-Joran (佐竹上覧). 

Kakunodate's tourists capital, Bukeyashiki-dori (武家屋敷通り)is a street of old samurai residences where the main event of the Day 2 takes place. After each performance, the float has to head to the final destination-- the Yakushi-do Temple-- to finally complete the 3 missions of the festival.

Most floats take the same route back, so that the floats must  pass by the ones in line. The same priority rule as a visit to the Shinmeisha Shrine (神明社applies here: The kudari floats (下り山)must give up on the privilege and yield to the nobori floats (上り山)that are on the route for a mission.

The street is crowded with people and floats.

Designated by the government as the Important Preservation District, any properties could be damaged in this district, let alone injuries in the crowd. This is when a negotiation or koushou (交渉) comes in.

Negotiators from each side scuat down face to face. They discuss in full details (e.g. timing, space) to carry out the move smoothly and by meticulous attention.

Hush-hush.. they follow the traditional rule and have specific lines of words.

Carefully and swiftly moved.

NO CRASH at this point since the negotiations carried out smoothly.
The excitement can be see on the Day 3.

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