November festivals (part 5)
November is just two days away so two more chances to talk about November festivals till they arrive, so let’s get to it.
The Pirate Festival – George Town Harbor, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
The Pirate Festival is the only such celebration to take place on all three of the Cayman isles and is geared towards beginner swashbucklers.
This is a massive ten-day long festival which includes music, dances, costumes, games and all manner of controlled mayhem and it all starts with a mock invasion. Two replica 17th-century galleons, accompanied by other boats and even the occasional submarine, carry out a ‘surprise’ attack on George Town Harbor. The ‘invasion’ is different from year to year, but the general idea is that the seadogs battle e defending force, capture the governor and throw him in the brig. The pillaging of the world’s fifth-largest commercial centre is kept to an absolute minimum.
One of the major events of the festival is the Cardboard Boat Regatta, which awards the shortest race, best costume and the most spectacular sinking. The Regatta is followed shortly by the Trial of the Pirates, a fireworks display and a street party.
Tori-No-Ichi (Day of the Rooster) – Otori shrines, Asakusa, Tokyo, Japan
This festival takes place every 12 days in November on the days of the Rooster – according to the Chinese zodiac. Festival-goers visit Otori shrines to ask for plentiful harvest and tons of sales. Markets spring up around the shrines and the largest, in Tokyo’s Asakusa area, attracts tens of thousands of visitors to about 200 stalls.
The popular item to by is a lucky kumade, which is a rake made of bamboo and adorned with charms, the idea being to rake in the wealth. Traditionally the buyer and seller seal the deal with a ritual known as tejime in which they rhythmically clap their hands in harmony.
Visiting any of these festivals will be a better experience if you employ worldwide car hire services.