After I came back from shooting a video at Gyoen Mae, I kept thinking about all the wishes people hanged in the bamboo trees in the local shrine. I had to photograph them. I just had to do it. And when I finally left the house, it was quite late.
It was almost midnight when I found a group of young people who were enjoying the last vestiges of happiness and laughter in the atmosphere, never mind the time, the heat or fatigue. Youth is a gift we appreciate once is gone.
But as soon as I arrive at Nakano Hikawa shrine, the laughs and happy voices that had been floating in the air disappeared, as if the deities that hunt away joy and smiles forbade them entrance. There was nobody, only the wind whispered caution. It was the Tanabata night, and the gods didn’t want to be disturbed. At least, not by me.
Originally published at consult-culture.com on July 19, 2018.