Thursday, November 4, 2010

Culture Day

November 3rd is Culture Day (文化の日, Bunka no hi). The day was established as a national holiday for the purpose of "the love of  freedom, peace and the promotion of culture" in 1948. Originally the day was celebrated as the Meiji emperor's birthday.

On this day, the emperor confers the Order of Culture on people who have contributed to Japanese culture at the Imperial Palace. The Agency for Cultural Affairs hosts art festivals around the day.
According to meteorological data, this day is usually sunny every year. It was sunny yesterday.

The recipients of the orders in Japan are also announced on this day and around the end of April twice a year.
In 2006, 13 Turkish people were presented with The Order of the Rising Sun. They include the former Turkish ambassador to Iran, the former president of the Turkish Airlines and the crew members of the flight from Teheran to Japan(Narita) on the 19th of March 1985.

During the war with Iran, Iraq warned that Iraq intercepted any aircraft overflying Iraq's territory 48 hours later. Many countries sent rescue aircrafts for protecting their own citizens, but Japanese aircrafts were able to fly to Teheran because of opposition from a labor union. The Japanese government requested many countries to get Japanese expatriates on their planes, they were loaded down with protecting their own citizens.

There was nothing the Japanese government can do. However, two planes of the Turkish Airlines arrived at Teheran to get Japanese expatriates to safety. When the planes vacated the Iraq's air space, they had only one and a half hours until the time limit.

Turkey helped Japan because of the incident of Ertuğrul.
Ertuğrul was a sailing frigate of the Ottoman Navy and was wrecked off the coast of Wakayama Prefecture in 1863. The villagers of Kushimoto-cho strove to rescue the crew members of the ship, and 69 survivors were delivered back to Turkey by two Japanese naval ships.

The newspaper announced the recipients of the Order of the Rising Sun, but it didn't refer to the reason behind them receiving the orders. I guess younger people don't know those affairs.

Waseda University and Keio University met in the final game of the Tokyo Big6 Baseball League in 50 years on November 3rd. These two Universities are referred to as the "twin jewels of the private universities." Waseda flung down a challenge to Keio In 1903.

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