Thursday, March 31, 2011

Japanese Prefectural Flag Twins - Saga & Kyoto: Part 11

This is the final pair of Japanese Prefectural flags compared in the blog thread. It may seem odd at first but the partner of Kyoto is Saga Prefecture. The rich dynamic is like a farm girl vs a princess.

Kyoto is the number one destination of tourist travel in Japan. During the feudal era, Kyoto was the Imperial Seat and cultural hot spot beyond compare. Romantic writers, geisha, temples, poets, artists, Samurai, and nearly everything associated with classical Japan has a deep association or connection with Kyoto.

Saga on the other hand is the polar opposite (mecca-ly speaking), rarely is there any international or domestic travel to Saga. Saga is very much off the beaten path. And Saga is one of the least populated prefectures of Japan. This is also a blessing, because the natural beauty of Japan is conserved - Saga is populated with rice paddies, vast bamboo grooves, and friendly locals. The outfit the Japanese farm girls is stunning in its own way, just as stunning to the out fit of the geisha (see the video below and pause it!).

Flag of Kyoto

The common element between the flag of Saga and Kyoto is a six petaled white flower. Both have a mini-hi no maru in the center. Saga's is red while Kyoto's is gold. In between the mini-hi no maru are patterns that flow with the shape of the flower.

Flag of Saga

Saga has six red U-shaped parabola's facing outwards while Kyoto has a complete golden sine wave. Their background colours differ. But also harmonize as semi-Christmas colours. Saga's green blends well with Kyoto's reddish tint.

Close up of Saga's Mini 'Hi no Maru'

You could argue that the national banner is 'hidden' within the flag of Saga - if you zoom in really closely.Because, in the center of the white flowers is a red disc. This is the only flag of Japan to have a complete mini-chichai 'hi no maru.' The petals also have red streaks. The gold streak of Kyoto is totally connected. It looks like a convoluted asterisk, or 70s style flower power symbol. But for Saga - their are six red streaks, that look like six letter U's.

Kyoto is world famous because it was the cultural heartland of Japan. It carries the intrinsic echo of Emperors, Geisha, poets, artists, and craftsmen - who define Japanese Culture by their art. Saga on the other hand is and was Japan's Breadbasket (aka Japanese-Kansas). The pace of life is sweetly slow. Slow and unpopular as Saga may seem, Saga played a key role in the modernization of Japan. After the forced entry-arrival of America at Yokohama -Saga was destined to give Japan her famous "Seven wise men from Saga" who helped Japan adapt and modernize to the 'Western Barbarians.'

These men of Saga played key roles in the modernization of Japan in a crash course of studying Western Ways in 30 years. Note that the West had nearly 500 years to become "modern" in a natural way. Japan did it in less than one generation. In less than 30 years they mastered European Technologies, founded the Japanese Red Cross, established a Western style of Education System, and created a modern judicial system.

Saga was the original gateway to modern Japan by the gracious will of "Seven wise men from Saga," and Kyoto is the traditional gateway to ancient Japan.

Video Collage of Kyoto and Saga - play them together if you can
& mute Saga if you do! And let both load up before playing!

KYOTO ----------------------- SAGA

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