December 31, A New Year eve.
by Mie

It's December 31st today, the last day of a year. The last "Multimedia Cafe COARA" was over. What year was this year? How the Internet world or PC have changed? This was the main theme of tonight's program aired from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m., unlike usual time zone. Thank you very much Mr. Ono, Mrs. Yamasaki, Mr. Yoshino as the producer, and all supporting staff.
Just like yesterday's year-end party, two of us wear kimonos tonight as well. We are going to visit a nearby shrine for the first pray of the year. Miss Korenaga, on the left, wears a wonderful kimono as you see.

An established custom? We take so-called "The buckwheat noodles eaten on New Year's Eve." No, this is just the second timetable served by me who loves a pleasant atmosphere like this. I forcibly called at the people on their way back home to eat the noodle. Since I prepared enough amount of noodle this time, people can ask another cup of noodle. Many people such as Miss Korenaga, Mr. Oshima, Mr. Yuuki, Mr. Miyazaki, Mr. Yamaguchi from Fukuoka, Mr. Ono (general secretariat of COARA), Mr. Hoashi, Mr. Mori, and me, all enjoyed the dish. Some snacks presented by Mrs. Yamasaki were tasty as well. Thank you!
Now we have warmed ourselves up. We are going to start a live broadcast over a worldwide hookup of the scene of a count down at a nearby shrine named Kasuga through the Internet. Many people pray for their happiness of the year.
Police is on duty, thank you for watching the safety.

A "troika" airs a live program from the site. Mr. Ono aims shot opportunities, Mr. Mori and Mr. Yuuki (yellow jacket) help the reporter. They look like enjoying the relay.

The communication system, however, went out of order on the very moment of the zero count of the New Year. Disappointed! We have no choice to take pictures of the crowd on their way back home. The reporter tried to interview some people, but couldn't take good record. At last, he snapped us unwillingly. We cheered "A Happy New Year" to the camera.

Holly tags and oracles are ready for sale. Many Shinto priests and shrine maiden wait for the believers. After opening an oracle and read it, people hang them on wire ropes like this, hoping good luck in a new year.
As the transfer line was unstable, we couldn't report enough scene of the shrine. We came back to COARA office to discuss another strategy. Through the discussion, we realized that nobody has prayed to God this time. Then we brought out a small an offertory box that happened to be in the office. Then we made money offerings. Will God accept our instant pray like this?
The main reason that the connection failed this time could be much more people have been using the Internet or cellular phones those days. Since we have no other choice tonight, we finally gave up the relay any more. After cleaning the table, we headed home. Thank you so much everybody! Have a good New Year!

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