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  #81  
Old 02-15-2009, 07:15 PM
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The Japanese are known to make a lot of the fact that they have four distinct seasons. So it comes as no surprise that appreciation of seasons is instilled from an early age. The sensitivity toward seasonal changes tends to govern mundane details of everyday life such as food and clothing. Thus, dark colours may be viewed as appropriate during winter.
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And, subtle shadows of bamboo on bamboo." Zeami Motokiyo
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  #82  
Old 02-25-2009, 06:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Al_bina View Post
The Japanese are known to make a lot of the fact that they have four distinct seasons. So it comes as no surprise that appreciation of seasons is instilled from an early age. The sensitivity toward seasonal changes tends to govern mundane details of everyday life such as food and clothing. Thus, dark colours may be viewed as appropriate during winter.
Isn't it true, Al_bina, that there are four different kimono colours used throughout the year to reflect the different seasons - yellows, greens, pinks and blues or something like that?!
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  #83  
Old 02-25-2009, 06:56 PM
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You are quite right noting that women do have season -appropriate kimonos.
Quote:
Whatever the occasion-the first shrine visit of the new year, stopping in to see an older person, or what have you--Japanese people always keep the season in mind when deciding which kimono to wear. Pale colors such as light green are appropriate for spring, while cool colors such as lavender or dark blue or are good for summer. Autumn calls for colors that imitate the hues of the turning leaves, and winter is the season for strong colors like black and red.[my bolding]
Reference:All About Kimono
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"To watch the sun sink behind a flower clad hill.
To wander on in a huge forest without thought of return. To stand upon the shore and gaze after a boat that disappears behind distant islands. To contemplate the flight of wild geese seen and lost among the clouds.
And, subtle shadows of bamboo on bamboo." Zeami Motokiyo
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  #84  
Old 02-25-2009, 10:15 PM
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I see. That's good to know; thank you, Albina.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Al_bina View Post
The Japanese are known to make a lot of the fact that they have four distinct seasons. So it comes as no surprise that appreciation of seasons is instilled from an early age. The sensitivity toward seasonal changes tends to govern mundane details of everyday life such as food and clothing. Thus, dark colours may be viewed as appropriate during winter.
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  #85  
Old 08-12-2009, 06:38 AM
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Prince and Princess Akishino will officially visit The Netherlands from august 21st till the 26th,on occasion of 400 years trade relations between The Netherlands and Japan.

TRH Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien will accompany the couple to various functions.
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  #86  
Old 08-12-2009, 08:54 AM
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So cool we will see Their Highnesses again on official trip!
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  #87  
Old 08-12-2009, 12:41 PM
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I don't usually reply but this seems to be a direct insult, in my opinion, against the crwon princely couple.. We have seen TRH Akishino and Kiko taking trips to Roumania and now they are going to the Netherlands. It doesn't seem right that they should be representing JApan. I know that CP Masako is not as well. But she has been to the Netherlands in a private capacity. It just seems that the crown princely couple should have gone to Holland.
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  #88  
Old 08-12-2009, 10:23 PM
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I understand your feelings: It is not easy to see this, because the CP couple is far more charismatic and have a higher rank. We agree on that. However, it is common that members of the japanese Imperial family -not only the emperors or CP couple- make these trips in representation, not fo Japan -they cannot sign anything compromising the country- but of the Imperial Family itself: in the last two moths, relatives of Emperor Akihito were visiting Bolivia for celebrating an anniversary of relations between both countries.
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  #89  
Old 08-13-2009, 09:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marquesa d Yolombó View Post
I understand your feelings: It is not easy to see this, because the CP couple is far more charismatic and have a higher rank. We agree on that. However, it is common that members of the japanese Imperial family -not only the emperors or CP couple- make these trips in representation, not fo Japan -they cannot sign anything compromising the country- but of the Imperial Family itself: in the last two moths, relatives of Emperor Akihito were visiting Bolivia for celebrating an anniversary of relations between both countries.

Akishino is but a backstabbing little bro.He publicly critisizes his elder brother,certainly with the consent of that develish IHA.And,he already has more then an attitude since he believes his son will be Emperor after his brother.By sending this {edited - Elspeth} abroad from time to time the IHA emphasizes where their sympathies are,or at least were their machinations are readily and happily accepted.Nada mas.
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  #90  
Old 08-14-2009, 12:59 AM
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Wow Lucien, tell us what you really think. And why oh why can't Akishino get his hair cut already. He looks like a moptop.
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  #91  
Old 08-15-2009, 09:43 AM
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Well, I agree that Akishino needs a hair cut urgently LOL LOL ; but it may mean to me that, anyway, IHA may be using this traditional element to disturb... this guys are very very tough
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  #92  
Old 08-15-2009, 01:46 PM
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Thank you for replying Marquesa. I just think it is a shame that the IHA denies the CP couple a chance to travel. I understand what you are saying. I think that a change of scene might be beneficial for Masako and that she could make real progress is she is made to feel that she is making a difference. That is what she married into the royakl house for: to represent it. The heir has been born. Now celebrate the CP couple who are rightfully the next Emperor and Empress of Japan!
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  #93  
Old 08-15-2009, 04:44 PM
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Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko do a wonderful job representing Japan.
Crown Princess Masako's public appearance have increased. However, it is impossible for us to determine what exactly keeps the IHA from arranging engagements abroad for the Crown Princely couple. Furthermore, it would have been nice for Prince Naruhito and Princess Masako to visit the Netherlands and spend some time with their close acquaintances such as Crown Prince Willem Alexander and Crown Princess Maxima.
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"To watch the sun sink behind a flower clad hill.
To wander on in a huge forest without thought of return. To stand upon the shore and gaze after a boat that disappears behind distant islands. To contemplate the flight of wild geese seen and lost among the clouds.
And, subtle shadows of bamboo on bamboo." Zeami Motokiyo
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  #94  
Old 08-18-2009, 03:50 AM
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I think the simple answer is that Crown Princess Masako needs to increase her public duties and appareances in Japan first before the IHA send her off on tours abroad. Japan has seen their Crown Princess on very few occassions in recent years and by slowly increasing her duties at home, she can develop more confidence and be more at ease with her duties, and the people of Japan can reacquaint themselves with their Crown Princess. At the same time, Japan does need to be represented abroad and it may not be wise to keep sending Crown Prince Naruhito on his own - it draws too much attention to the absence of his wife and in any event he may wish to be at her side instead of constantly being away all the time. Accordingly, the IHA have sent Akishino and Kiko abroad more as a compromise to the whole situation. I am sure that given time, trips abroad will be made by the Crown Princely couple together.
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  #95  
Old 08-18-2009, 02:45 PM
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I agree that it is a shame CP Masako cannot yet travel abroad. Let's hope sooner we will see her involved in more activities abroad with her husband, so that they can represent Japan and the Imperial Family properly.
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  #96  
Old 08-20-2009, 10:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by linda85 View Post
I don't usually reply but this seems to be a direct insult, in my opinion, against the crwon princely couple.. We have seen TRH Akishino and Kiko taking trips to Roumania and now they are going to the Netherlands. It doesn't seem right that they should be representing JApan. I know that CP Masako is not as well. But she has been to the Netherlands in a private capacity. It just seems that the crown princely couple should have gone to Holland.

I agree with you. Of course, we can always only guess what is happening behind the scenes. But it is a fact that in the years after their marriage the crown couple – unlike the Akishinos and also unlike the former Princess Sayako - was hardly ever sent abroad, in spite of Masako´s professional abilities and perfect health (at the time), but that they were scheduled for a trip to New Zealand and Australia nearly as soon as Aiko was born. That looks to me very much like a prompt reward for “compliance” with the IHA´s wishes, and that raises the suspicion that the previous “house arrest” (as a Japanese newspaper termed it) had been meant as some sort of punishment or pressure. And if it was so at the time, why should it not be meant as such by now? (And the crown couple was, before Aiko’s birth, doing very few appointments INSIDE JAPAN, as well – the reason for this being, according to my information, that they were, much against their inclination, simply not scheduled for more. Details see here: A German book about Crown Princess Masako, postings #10 and #11 So, if Masako does not appear in public, we can never be certain if that is still due to her health or if she is simply refused the opportunity to do more.)

And there is something else: I have carefully read the transcripts of the imperial press conferences as far as they are available in English. It is very interesting to compare the Akishinos’ way of doing them with that of the crown prince. The crown prince never fails to give typical little stories about Aiko, for example how she reenacted the sumo wrestling techniques she had observed in tv with her parents (or with staff members of the crown prince household – I WOULD have liked to watch that ), or how she grieved about the death of her dog. From the Akishino-press conferences, on the other hand, it is very hard to draw any stories that would give you an idea of the personality and the life of his daughters. For example, when their parents took them to visit Thailand and see the king and queen, we are informed that they “seemed to enjoy it”. No cute comment, no nothing. There are certainly reasons for this that lie in the personalities of Akishino and the crown prince but that is not my point here. The difference has political significance, and I am sure the crown prince is absolutely aware of that. The Akishinos’ way is much more “political correct” in terms of imperial tradition of how to deal with the public. By Japan´s ultranationalists, the imperial family is still expected to appear “distant”, not too human, or better: not human at all, to their people. (Whereas the “normal” Japanese, like the rest of the world, tend to be rather charmed by discovering an individual trait in their royals, as can be noticed when remembering how very popular the “banned” wedding photo of the Akishinos became.) As an example, the IHA never wanted to give out information about the royals’ pets. We can only guess how much the crown couple had to struggle when they wanted to give credit where credit is due and tell the public how much their spirit had been uplifted by the company of their faithful dogs. Besides, the crown prince still says in his news conferences “rebellious” things like: “We would appreciate it if more privacy could be allowed to us.” (Birthday press conference in February)

So, I think it absolutely possible that the IHA has another reason for their preference to send the Akishinos abroad: If Japanese royals take a trip abroad, they are due to give a press conference. Of course, it is impossible to completely inhibit the crown prince from giving press conferences. But IHA executives might feel that the less opportunity he has of speaking to the public, the better.
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  #97  
Old 08-21-2009, 06:52 AM
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There is no great conspiracy as to why Akishino and Kiko are doing the official trip to The Netherlands. Akishino is the patron of the Japan-
Netherlands Friendship society, Akishino and Kiko accompany the Dutch royals when they are in Japan for official visits. Akishino and Kiko attended the funerals of both Prince Claus and Queen Juliana. Therefore they are the logical choice to make the official visit to The Netherlands to commenorate 400 years of official contact.

In the first few years of their marriage, Naruhito and Masako did make some official overseas trips. A few years back the Chief Steward of the IHA made public the knowledge that Masako's overseas trips were cut in order they hoped she would fall pregnant. Their cutting back of overseas trips was deliberate, the Australia and New Zealand trip occured before the pressure began for another child.

Reading the few English transcripts of the official interviews that Akishino and Kiko do for his birthday don't really give any kind of real insight into what they're like. For one thing the interviews are dated, the last one is 2006, the Japanese site does have all the recent interviews. Live footage of Akishino and Kiko doing the interview gives a far better perspective. Akishino defers to Kiko, like a good Japanese husband when discussing their children.

The Akishino family is actually very popular with Japanese because they are fairly 'normal'. Their pets in past years have been seen in various video footage of them. Kiko especially when she married was hugely popular among Japanese women, and she continues to be popular now as she's friendly and nice when performing her official duties. Akishino is quieter. They are not the 'remote, stereotypical ultra nationalist' dream couple, the fact that that people feel they are approachable makes them popular.

Re: the idea of Masako and 'house arrest'. Masako had a breakdown, part of the stress she was under she refused to have doctors employed by the IHA. When she started to get better she also refused to attend planning meetings with the IHA courtiers in regards to official duties. Things have only improved within the CP household with the appointment of the new Head of Household who is a former diplomat that worked with Masako's father. With the improvement in Masako's health her public workload had increased over the past year. She was never locked away, either she refused to be involved with planning her workload or she was simply too unwell to actually carry out a workload of official duties. Eg Jan 2008 she and Naruhito went to a disabled winter games in Nagano, both attended the opening ceremony, the following day Masako was due to watch ice skating but wasn't able to and spent the day in her hotel room, she couldn't do 2 official duties in consecutive days. There's no way she's up to an official foreign visit with travel and multiple engagements each day.
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  #98  
Old 08-23-2009, 06:31 AM
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Charlotte1,
Thanks for sharing your thoughts about the Akishinos and CP couple.
IMO, you are absolutely right! Great analysis!
No need to look for the conspiracy theories, the real facts are more simple. CPss just needs more time - and she will be OK.

And no need for Lucien to be so brutal and rough in his posts using players of speech, ex.#89.
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  #99  
Old 08-23-2009, 03:44 PM
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You may not like how Lucien described Akishino, but he isn't too far from the mark. Ever since Akishino publicly criticized Naruhito, he's been given the best assignments. Even now with Masako almost fully recovered, nothing has changed. The IHA parade the Akishinos as if they were the CP couple, still giving them the best assignments. You can say what you like, repeat the same old rhetoric, but it is what it is. I think Akishino toadied to the IHA and now he gets the plum assignments.
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  #100  
Old 08-23-2009, 04:17 PM
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As somebody said on another board, apparently the Japanese royal families 'devide' countries among their members. Akishino and his wife deal with the Netherlands for example. They are the patrons of the Netyherlands-Japanese friendship organization. Prince Naruhito and his wife deal with Belgium for example, while prince Tomohito has Norway, prince Katsura deals with New-Zealand and Australia etc.

courtesey: Antonia at the BRMB.

-
The prince visited a chicken farm in Barneveld, as he specialized int he domestication of the chicken according to newspaper 'Telegraaf'.

The couple was able to walk around in the city of Haarlem, which princess Kiko enjoyed (see royalblog: News Summary Royalblog.nl: Princess Kiko follows in Mozart's footsteps).
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