Getting a taste of old Japan allows for venturing into the past and even stepping into a Geisha or Warrior persona. The elegant makeup, the bright, beautiful Geisha kimono, and the dress of a brave Warrior or Samurai brings the mysterious past into the present for those who are willing to travel there.
During the 2016 Crystal World Cruise, Cruise Specialists guests Joyce and Bob Sykes enjoyed a moment of traveling back in time at a shop in Shimizu, Japan. Here they allow guests to dress up in traditional Geisha Warrior garb, understanding the massive effort that went in to the beauty of that time. The Geisha and Warrior are indigenous to Japanese culture, dating back to at least the 11th century. The word “Geisha” means a practitioner of the performing arts, and there is definitely a lot of theater involved in the life and world of the Geisha.
A Tradition of Grace and Service
Traditional Geishas are professional entertainers who may also serve refreshments to guests and engage them in conversation. Geishas were often trained starting at a young age. Many were of noble birth in the upper class of society, and the profession was often passed down in these families.
Geisha women danced and sang for Warriors and attended to their needs. Some Geishas were assigned to Shoguns, Doymios, Samurai or even the Emperor. Many were concubines to powerful men. By the 16th century, Geishas became more ubiquitous and linked with the tea houses around Japan called hanamachis. By the 17th century, the Geisha occupation was popular enough that Japan began to tax the profession.
Geishas and Warriors
Geisha are trained in Japanese ancient dance, traditional singing and playing instruments like the three stringed ivory shamisen. They also learn the art of the tea ceremony, serving alcohol with proper manners, reciting poetry, calligraphy, flower arrangement, conversation, etiquette and social graces. Modern Geishas may learn computer skills and other languages so that they can serve foreign clients. Some are models who travel internationally.
Traditional Geisha dance may include the Miyako Odori and Cherry Dances, for the beauty of the Cherry Blossom is celebrated and revered in Japan. Of course, the distinctive makeup, dramatic hairstyle and beautiful kimono of the Geisha is unmistakable, as is the dress of the Warrior. The look of the Geisha and Warrior pictured together is beautiful and dramatic.
Partaking of it is a treasured, delightful experience for those wishing to have a taste of traditional Japanese culture.
The 2016 Crystal World Cruise has many exciting moments left, but why just read about it? Start planning your own world cruise, we’re here to help!