Detours were set up in early preparation for sunset—when the festivities would begin. Although car travel in the beach areas wasn’t as common as the more popular areas of the town, for this day and this event all vehicles were directing around for the sake of the festival.
Despite the rain that had plagued the set-up crews for a few hours during the early morning, the workers continued to set up with high-hopes and wishes towards the skies that the rain would lessen over time, and after a doubtful three hours the skies cleared and their prayers were answered and smiles greeted the sun as it ducked out from the grey clouds that had masked it. Oh, and how it greeted them back.
Any worries that soggy grasses and dirt would ruin the fun were easily dismissed at the peak of noon when the temperature was pleasantly warm with a few exceptions through-out the day when it rose. While finishing up their preparations there were those who continued to take peeks up to the sky in fear of another explosion of rain (but were relieved to see no looming storm clouds,) and wish for the sun to start cooling off because they were sweating like mad (and pause soon afterward to ponder of the irony of their wishes,) All in all, it was the perfect day.
As soon as the sun began to dip low and the stars began to twinkle to their reflections in the calm and tame waters, with a distinct snap the switches were thrown in unison and the long boardwalk was alight with strings and webs of lanterns. Awnings were drawn, some were cranked out and grills began to sizzle in expectation of the constant crowds, each year bringing with it more and more people.
And they came. Mothers, fathers, sons and daughters alike began to appear from parked cars to walk the planks and breathe in the smell of the sea (and every friable dish and delicacy one could imagine) Children began to run around while stifling giggles as they went from stall to stall in search of their favorite games and the ‘good’ prizes in their eyes. Couples walking arm in arm and hand in hand smiled to themselves, and the town was alive and together again.
Smiling, Naruto didn’t quite feel like a true part of the bustling crowd. Alone and not dressed like the more traditional (which he noticed every time he passed a housewife in her kimono, and continuously grew more and more self conscious of his dark jeans, t-shirt and wrinkled dress shirt.) Sure he never missed a chance to come here in the years past, and had been lucky to get the day off (Maxine had called him a ‘cutie’ and declared he take the day off to have some fun for himself, and he was thinking Maxine’s idea of fun differed greatly from his…)
Nevertheless, there he was, walking along with a grin to anyone who’d return it and the occasional mouthful of dango or sweets, depending on the stall he passed. Sure, he was there with a strict budget… but it was a special event! He’d eat nothing but ramen for months and live in his car for the rest of his life if he needed to. He could forget his worries for a moment and just walk along in the crowds and get lost in the moment, for he’d have plenty of time to think about it later on. Regret too, perhaps.
Ooc: Just thought we needed something to get us going again, so here we are! Feel free to pretend to have known ahead of time and or do anything you wish. xD; Just have fun! And let’s get this party started