Yesterday happened to be the birthday of the Emperor of Japan (天皇誕生日: てんのうたんじょうび, birthday of the Emperor) and that’s why we didn’t have to work around here. However today and tomorrow we have to go to work, there’s no Xmas holidays in Japan.
One of the Emperor’s birthday traditions is that the “common people” is allowed to see him. The royal family gathers behind big windows specially prepared for the occasion at the Imperial Palace, and groups of people take turns to see the Emperor and his family. Each turn takes 3 minutes, the imperial family waves with their hand and smiles, and the people that go to see them wave small Japan flags.