Happy New Year!

Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America

Happy New Year, Anime B&Bers! I spent my first day of the year driving an hour out of town to visit for the first time the Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America, located in Granite Falls, WA. It is the North American branch of the Mie prefecture Tsubaki O Kami Yashiro Shinto shrine, and sits in a delightful wooded glade next to the river. And despite its somewhat remote location, the car line leading up to the lot was long and attendees stood by directing people to open spots. The organization was surprising and efficient at making what could have felt like a long wait not too annoying.

Walking under the gate and down the path, you’re greeted with a humble gathering of buildings. We first registered for a purification ceremony time, then proceeded to wash our hands before approaching the shrine. I was as excited as a kid at Christmas to toss in my coins and shake the belled rope with my wish at heart.

When you enter the oratory, you are required to remove your shoes, which felt odd outside of my own home. The ceremony itself was longer than I had anticipated and I spent the majority of it inspecting all the different people around me, as well as the hall itself. Afterward, they gave everyone amazake and we purchased a couple of amulets: one for relationships and one for good health. I certainly hope to be successful in both over the course of 2014!

We spent a bit of time afterward wandering the shrine grounds and taking pictures. I look forward to experiencing the many other ceremonies and festivals Seattle has to offer and invite anyone else who lives in the area to come along ^^

6 thoughts on “Happy New Year!

  1. Happy New Year Marina! That sounds much different than I’d have imagined but I love getting a taste of other cultures like that. Not that I ever get to besides food. Speaking of food I can’t resist sharing a site with you. I know your love of food and Japanese culture so just in case you don’t know about it check out skoshbox.com

    I hope you have a great year Marina.

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    • Thanks for sharing that link; I’ll definitely look into it! The location really was lovely and I hope to visit again for future events. I’m not religious by any means, but like you said, I’m enjoying it for cultural and educational purposes.

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  2. Happy new year to you Marina-chan. Glad to hear you had a fun time visiting a cool locale like that one.I’d like to visit the places you’ve been to myself someday. Keep on cooking some mean dishes and I’ll see you again whenever you have time to post something.

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    • Happy new year to you, too! I forgot to mention the year of the horse ><
      If you ever do visit some of the places I've talked about, you should for sure tell me what you think. It's always fun to see what others noticed that I quite possibly overlooked.

      I also hope to post a bit more with my schedule stabilizing a bit. Thanks!

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