Kyoto geiko entertainers begin New Year visits
NHK -- Dec 14
Traditional female entertainers in Kyoto have started offering early New Year greetings.

December 13th is the first day of the New Year preparation period in Japan's ancient capital.

A group of geisha, known in Kyoto as "geiko," and their apprentices called "maiko" wearing colorful kimono made calls on Thursday to thank people for their support over the past year. They visited their dance teacher, Yachiyo Inoue, in the entertainment district of Gion.

They exchanged greetings in a room decorated with traditional rice cakes. Inoue encouraged her students and gave them folding fans.

One of the maiko said she was nervous because this was the first time she had taken part in the ritual. She said she wants to help the apprentices who will begin training next year by looking after them like a big sister.

News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
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