Tuesday, January 06, 2009


Kokusai-dori (International Street) is a very popular shopping street in Naha, Okinawa. It's probably the most popular destination in Okinawa and has lots of very interesting shops and restaurants. This particular store, pictured above, has a giant animated white cat attached to the side of the building. The cat's paw slowly moves up and down. It's symbol or good luck charm for successful business. A lot of stores sell much smaller versions of the cat. Also, depending on the color of the cat, it is a good luck charm for different things. This type of figure is called a Maneki Neko ("beckoning cat") and you can read more about them here on Wikipedia.

The sharp-eyed observer might also notice Ronald McDonald and Buzz Lightyear in this picture. They're both a little easier to spot if you click on the photo for a larger view.


JD said...

B and I bought ourselves a small lucky cat when we moved down to Redondo Beach -- it's next to Gardena, which has a large Japanese population. We want to get a bigger one at some point -- they're so cute, and hey, who doesn't like luck -- but we've been mystified as to what the different scrolls and symbols on them mean.

Linda said...

Oh my goodness, I remember that cat! Thanks for the photo.

Linda F.

good luck charm said...

It will bring you money and wealth. The little paw is waving the good stuff in.