Today is a national holiday, Children’s Day — Kodomo no hi (こどもの日) and in the early morning hours there are carp-shaped Koinobori flags that families raised one poles for the boys of the family. Everybody knows that the actual name holiday is Boys’ Day — Tango no Sekku and it was renamed in 1948 to Children’s day to deal with the fact that Boys’ Day was a national holiday, while Girls’ Day (March 15th) is not.
Actually, it was hard for me for me to take any good photos of carp/Koinobori flags in my upscale Tokyo neighborhood, Denenchofu, where the average age of the residents is well over 55 years old. According to Reuters today, the proportion of the population aged below 15 had fallen to an all-time low 13.6 percent of the entire population and marking the 26th straight year of declines. Government estimates say Japan’s proportion of children in the population was the lowest in the world, ranking behind 14.1 percent of Italy and Germany.
So at dawn, I searched high and low for a good photo of a carp/Koinobori flags. Finally, I just took a photo (above right) from my rooftop with some carp flags, which compare quite nicely with the painting “a Moment” by Christophe Guillon (above left). Little did I know, that my dawn photo hunt would burn out my eyes and turn them into Japaneseque-looking dummy head as shown below.
Yahoo! News — May 4, 2007
New research from Japan found that from Spring through Fall, Ultraviolet exposure to the eye during early morning and late afternoon was approximately double that of the mid-morning/early afternoon period most often thought of as peak sun exposure time. Using a specially designed model to measure and record the amount of UV-B rays entering the eye, researchers concluded that eyes are at greater risk to UV exposure at times that many may not be taking proper steps to protect them.