Harajuku is a neighbourhood of Tokyo renowned for it's young Japanese cosplayers who hang out there. It has become one of the "must see" sights for tourists to Japan. I've never actually been to Harajuku. Never actually been to Tokyo. It is my intention to never visit Tokyo.
Anyway, it may look like these photos were taken in Harajuku, but in fact they were taken on Iwaijima, a tiny island of 500 souls off the south coast of Yamaguchi. And these boys are not cosplayers, but participants in a sacred ritual that dates back more than 1,100 years!
They are part of the crew of huge rowing boats that sail out to sea to meet and guide 3 boats that have come from Kyushu, bringing Shinto priests to the island for a week of ceremony and matsuri that occurs every 5 years.
Just got back from a fantastic 2 days there,... took 500 photos,... experienced some wonderful hospitality...... will post more later.....
Another post with video