No Michael, Don't Sigh! Today is the どんと祭 (dontosai) Festival where you can burn your New Year's decorations and pray for good luck in the following year. This is also the best scam ever. Various good luck items (pine trees, sacred ropes, arrows and daruma dolls ) are sold at exorbitant prices and then you get to toss them in the flames! I was a little disappointed in the fire itself. In previous years, one could gather around and toss your goodies in yourself. Now, it is all roped off and the organizers toss in your gomi for you. I suspect there were a few injuries last year.
Yet again, I missed out on these guys:
But I did manage to snap a few photos of the various food and game booths, ate some meat on a stick and an okonomiyaki and I even won a BB Gun!
Other good news, is that I picked up some Aqua and got a quartet of new Penguins. I simply adore the one in the onsen with the monkey, both wearing their washcloths upon their heads!