Life in Fukuoka "English" Vo.23

2020.09.07[Mon] 09:00


【The Chrysanthemum Festival, Choyo no Sekku】

This morning I'd like to introduce you to something called Choyo no Sekku or the Chrysanthemum Festival. In Japan, when people used the lunar calendar, there were five days in the year called sekku and on these days, particularly important traditional events were held. One of them is Choyo no Sekku which falls on the 9th day of the 9th month.   Although many probably aren't familiar with “sekku” anymore, it's on this day, also called the Chrysanthemum Festival, that people would decorate their space with chrysanthemums, drink sake sprinkled with the flower's petals and eat chestnut rice in the hopes of having a long, healthy life.

This is actually a custom that came from China. Since ancient times, odd numbers have been considered auspicious in China and 9 is the highest of the odd numbers so the double 9 pairing of September 9th is a particularly auspicious day. As a result, Choyo became one of the 5 “sekku” days.

I guess a lot of people are feeling a bit stressed out these days due to the Coronavirus and other factors. Some say that flowers help to reduce stress so why not decorate with some Chrysanthemums this season? They're also the flower of November in Western cultures so there's no reason not to enjoy them for a couple of months!


Disaster Prevention Day and Disaster preparedness Week

Every year on September 1st is Disaster Prevention day. And in Fukuoka City, from the 1st to the 7th of September, is Fukuoka City's Disaster Preparedness week, preparedness referring to making sure you have enough food and other items stored up and ready for when something happens. The city wants its citizens to be aware that disasters can happen and the first step to understanding that is encouraging all of us to have supplies stockpiled in our homes and companies.

So why is this so important? Well basically, if a typhoon or earthquake hits and you are lucky enough to find yourself unscathed, without food and water you can't survive. Stores won't be open so you won't be able to buy supplies. If the water system shuts down, there won't be any water to drink. And if electric and gas services are disrupted, there will be no way to cook food. So, in order to survive after you emerge from a disaster unscathed, it is important to stockpile your supplies on a daily basis.

So the question is now, what do we need. Well, you need water for drinking and food, enough for at least 3 days. Three liters of water per person per day is what is recommended. Emergency food like instant rice, canned goods, dry biscuits, chocolate bars, hardtack and the like, are good things to have on hand because then, even if you can't cook, you'll still have something to eat. If you have a radio and flashlight prepared, always check that the batteries are still good. And make sure you have any medicines you need to take as well as bandages and other medical supplies prepared. For households with infants, diapers are also an essential item to have prepped.

In addition to the water that you'll need for drinking, you'll also need water for things like flushing the toilet. So be prepared by keeping a plastic jug filled with tap water or filling the bathtub with water.

You don't need to have a ton ready all at once. Just buy a little more of what you would normally buy and as you eat it up, just buy more to replace it. In this way, you'll have a “rolling stock” and it's a good way to always have an amount of stockpiled food ready in your home at anytime. It's also convenient because you can prepare for any emergency without having to worry about expiration dates on your food stocks. 

Typhoons often occur this time of year so take a look and make sure your stocks are ready.


  • Colleen
  • Colleen
  • 誕生日:11月11日
    出身地:USA Detroit, MI
    興味のある事:I'm studying patisserie and languages