Things to be proud of
July 10, 2014 / DIARY
We often hear about specialties that strongly express the local colors, but let’s try to think about how these specialties were born.
Specialties are born because they are made only in that region, or because they match those particular climate and natural features.
But I think the biggest feature that characterizes those products is the pride the people of that area feel about them.
Things, products, stores.
For the O-Bon Festival in August, children and their families go back to grandparents’ homes, and every year there is always a particular eel restaurant to go. In your hometown, if there is a friend who often go to a local restaurant, non a famous one, he’ll recommend you saying something like: “go to that restaurant!”, “buy that as a gift!”, “those vegetables are good!”, and so on. We all have a place, a restaurant, a product that has a little place inside our hearts, and we can recommend it with a bit of modesty but without hesitation, because it’s something we are proud of. That’s because a special product is something loved by the local people. Local people become salesmen, promoting some specialties whit pride: a tremendous power.
I was born and raised in Chiba prefecture, and since I was a child, my mother always told me that peanuts from Chiba were delicious. For Bon Festival gifts and Year-end gifts, we used to go to a store close to my home called Maruhachi to buy peanuts. The only “amanatto” (sugared beans) I’d ever eaten were sugared peanuts. When I became an adult, I left Chiba and I went to Osaka, then I lived for a long time in Tokyo, but I’ve always chosen peanuts from Chiba.
Recently, I read an article about HAPPY NUTS DAY, a company from Kujukuri, on the eastern side of Chiba prefecture, that produces peanuts butter with local-grown peanuts and that takes great care in the roasting process. I was so happy that I immediately made an order. Chiba peanuts are so good, and now that there is a company that works in such a good way, I’m feeling so proud! That’s why I’m supporting it right now.
In Fukuoka, I feel the abundance of food products: “this is so good!” and I always recommend them. That’s because I feel so proud of them.
Hakata is now right in the midst of the Yamakasa Festival period. This is also a great pride of the people of Hakata.
Every product, everything we are proud of is tied together, and I think they are going to take root in their area.
Hakata Yamakasa Festival July 1-15