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Events at Kobe Municipal Library: Workshops, Movie Events, Storytelling, and more!

From October 27th to November 9th, 2021, libraries in Kobe held a “Book Week,” with exhibitions, workshops, fairs, and other events.
A member of the Kobe Study Abroad Team went to take part in the event!

Personally, when I want to read a book, I buy one in a bookstore or online. In my native Russia, I didn’t often go to the library, so going to an event at a Japanese library seemed very interesting! I was also happy to know that it was free to join all the events!

Movie Events
First, I headed to Nada Library. They had a three day movie event, and the movie I saw was “Segodon.”

I really enjoyed the movie. Historical films or dramas can teach you not just about history, but also about culture and customs, so I’m a big fan. “Segodon” didn’t have subtitles, but it was still easy to understand. I highly recommend checking out the next movie event!

Chigiri-e Art Workshop
On Sunday I participated in a chigiri-e workshop at the Nishi Library. Have you ever done chigiri-e? With chigiri-e, you use your hands instead of scissors, you shred paper into tiny pieces and put them together into a design of your choice. Japanese washi paper is usually used, but beginners can get by just fine with origami paper from the 100 yen shop.

An hour and a half passed in the blink of an eye, and I wasn’t able to finish my piece, but the teacher let me take some paper with me so I could finish it at home. Chigiri-e was a much more fun activity than I had imagined!

Quiz Rally & a Panel Exhbition of the Ever-Changing Sannomiya
On November 2nd, I traveled around Shin-Nagata and Sannomiya. At Shin-Nagata Library, I joined in on a quiz rally for adults, and I managed to fill in all of the quiz answers correctly and received a lovely bookmark! The questions were certainly not easy. For example, do you know the name of the specific color the Hankyu trains are painted?
After the quiz rally, I went to see the panel exhibition at Sannomiya Library. It was incredible to see what Sannomiya looked like and changed over the course of about 100 years.
Storytelling & Tole Painting (Workshop)
November 3rd was Culture Day in Japan, so I went to an event where I could learn about Japanese culture. That day Hokushin Library had a storytelling event for adults, and the library staff read stories like “Yugata kakete” (“Over the course of the evening”) and “Tam Lin.”
When I visited Hokushin, I was also able to enjoy a bit of the autumn season. Compared with areas like Suma and Sannomiya, the Hokushin area had colored maple leaves here and there, and a chilly wind was blowing, which made for quite the effect.

When the storytelling ended, I went to join a Tole painting workshop at Nada Library. Tole paintings is the art of painting patterns onto wooden household items. During the workshop, we painted strawberry and camomile designs onto notebooks instead of furniture. Adorable, isn’t it?

During my “Library Week” of visiting many different libraries, I also learned how to find and take out books from a Japanese library. If you come to look for a book yourself, the library staff will help you out. What’s more, when it’s time to return the book or get an extension, if the library was a Kobe municipal library, you don’t even need to return the book to the same library – any one of them is fine. How convenient is that!