Diary: Kurashiki / handmade market with Mae Maes + pet show

Mae Maes: Kazuko, Hatsumi, Ryoko, Rie

Ryoko’s band Mae Maes had a performance lined up at a handmade goods market fair at a convention centre type place between Okayama and Kurashiki so i tagged along. It was a big hall with rows and rows of booths, a special exhibit of sequin-ed up outfits used by a famous figure skater, a food court and a variety of entertainment with a sorta Hawaiian theme.

Plus a young lady called Suzu-chan with huge stage presence, solid banter and performance confidence.

I strolled around checked some stuff – not the super arts-crafty-crafts i would usually expect but great to see small-scale entrepreneurship in action.

Dug the fabric crafts – especially this Kaki (persimmon) tree in country scene which seems to be representative of my life these days – such pleasantness!

Martini glasses for Cmdr Bob… + Found some great coffee and a place to sit outside for a while too.

The band was fun and played a new song Ryoko’s been working on since Bali – the hall was a loud echo-y place so not ideal but fine practice reps for the band.

Again, a lot of the usual folks were there lending support and fan-ship.  Horiwaki-san is always there taking snaps and vids.

The band received great bento lunches too – there was an extra so i was in luck too!

The next hall over hosted a pets and pet good event so we checked that out since Suzumura Shacho hooked us up with tickets.

Suzumura-san, a successful local retired biznessman, is a bundle of energy, a big supporter of the local music scene and sings as well. Here he is on-stage doing some banter with Suzu-chan mentioned above (no relation).

Anyhow, the pet show was wild! So many folks with dogs in strollers (i guess that’s what you’d call em) plus all sorts of pets: iguanas, ferret-y looking things, big dogs, turtles, allegedly penguins for some reason but didn’t see. Lots of activities, contests, races, shows, trials… but all just a sideshow for us.

Cuddled a big dog, thought about getting a friend for our pet rabbit Maru but wisely declined.

Most importantly, was a great chance for Mae Maes to play some songs and share their music with folks on a Saturday out n about, and for me to gaze upon my darling in action :)

a smattering of Mae Maes supporters
Mae Maes and Suzu-chan pose for the folks
getting to know a big dog

Whatcha think?