Well, Easter is just about over here in Tokyo. We had an eventful weekend filled with celebrations of spring, and I tried to do as many "normal" Easter activities as possible. Easter is not a thing at all here in Japan, most people are not really even aware of what it is, so finding traces of the holiday proved to be quite difficult. The only conspicuous sign of the holiday is the marketing for Tokyo Disneyland's Easter Celebration, which goes through June. I should also make note that we are not a religious family, so our celebration of Easter is one of celebrating the coming of spring, more in line with the original pagan holiday than the Christian one.
One activity we did was to dye eggs. As I love hard boiled eggs, this is a fun and productive activity for me. Without access to any type of dye kits, and in keeping with a natural lifestyle, we made our own natural dyes. This was a step trickier than it would be in the U.S., as certain commonly used natural dyestuffs, such as red cabbage, are not easily found here. I went with three colors that we could simply create from our local market- blue/purple from vegetable juice, gold from turmeric, and light green from spinach.
Boiling spinach and turmeric.
So much excitement!
The finished product.
Our eggs turned out pretty well- the turmeric and juice dyes worked the best, and I might try red wine next year, as well as red cabbage and perhaps beets.
Little man also received presents from the Easter bunny on Easter morning. This was the true challenge of the day, finding Easter candy. On Friday I went to Tokyo Station on my way home from the archives to hunt for Easter foodstuffs. I thought this would be a simple task- Tokyo Station has two giant floors devoted to food and confections- but it turned out to be a bit harder than I anticipated. In almost an hour of shopping I found four things amongst the tens of thousands of square feet of food- bunny cookies (500 Yen, bought), Easter decorated hard candy (500 Yen, skipped), a chocolatier offering 800 Yen bunnies and 1200 Yen chocolate eggs with additional candies inside (bought), and another chocolatier offering 2000 Yen bunnies and 6000 Yen chocolate eggs (this is $20 and $60 respectively, perhaps obviously, skipped). I also picked up a box of pastel pink and blue Skytree chocolates, and was fortunate to receive some imported chocolate chicks from a friend. I splurged a bit more and bought some train candies, a train t-shirt, and a new toy train, which of course were the favorites this morning. No plastic eggs and grass, and no baskets this year, but we were still able to make a go of it. It was also great fun to have Joe on Skype as little dude searched our apartment for his bounty.
The rest of our day was pretty normal, though I did take us out to dinner at Hard Rock Cafe in Ueno to have the most Western style food possible, and we watched It's the Easter Beagle Charlie Brown, which was the perfect way to end the day.
No matter your beliefs, I hope that you have a lovely holiday, and are able to celebrate the coming of spring in some form. Happy Easter!