Wednesday, December 14, 2011
As a memorial for the victims of the major earthquake that struck Kobe in 1995 the city puts on a huge light display in December. It was described to us as organized line walking for a half an hour and then 10 minutes of seeing lights, which was pretty much how it went. The city blocks off streets to accommodate the line of people waiting to walk through the display, yes the line is two lanes wide. Cutting is also a major no-no here. All along the path there are people in security uniforms wielding orange light-up batons to make sure no one is jumping ahead.
The crowds were crazy, even by Japanese standards. After the 30min line and the 10min display, the lights open up to a huge circle. At this point there are no longer men with orange batons telling you where to go and it all turns into chaos.