Torii gate at the Meiji Shrine in Tokyo
We made our way to this shrine from the busy Harajuku Station. It wasn’t until we were nearing the center of the forest where the main shrine is located that I noticed all of the people around us were heading in the same direction.
Unbeknownst to us, the newest Grand Champion Sumo, “yokozuna,” was about to perform a ring-entering ceremony. He is the first Japanese born yokozuna in 19 years, and had just won the title that weekend.
We were quickly surrounded with people vying for a glimpse of him as he walked into the garden. It was a surreal experience. I took what photos I could and we made our exit. We did not understand the full gravity of what was occurring until much later, when we saw the garden on Japanese TV and did some research.
Being there was such a coincidence! With everyone there we weren’t able to see the majority of the park, but it was fun to be there and witness Japan’s pride in their Grand Champion!