Due to the late previous evening, we were up and about a bit later than planned. We went to Hachioji were there was a street festival along a road lined with ichou trees. The weather was very nice (up to 24 degrees) and we took a nice stroll along the lane. Most stalls were selling either food or (second-hand) clothes, but there were some ceramics as well (we bought a nice small vase). Everyone was very nice, friendly and wanted to chat; it was a very good atmosphere. At some places they were performing with traditional musical instruments while a yokai or dragon was 'scaring the children'. One nice aspect was that in ancient times Hachioji used to be a gate on the important road from Tokyo to Kyoto and they were commemorating that during this festival as well by setting up 12 "gates". You could get a wooden block and go from gate to gate. At each gate they burned the name of the gate you visited in the block. We got 8 gates in the end. We happened to come across a stall, where you could take a "chance" if you had more than 6 gate stamps. Which meant drawing a ball, like with the lottery, and we got chamomille oil water and some tissues.
When we returned, there was an accident on the Chuo line, which made us more than an hour too late for our evening appointment with Hikichi, a Canon colleague. Luckily, they were very nice and waited for us. We had a very nice dinner (okonomiyaki Hiroshima-style) while having nice conversation about our experiences in Japan and their experiences in the USA. Their dogs wanted attention all evening as well of course, which they got plenty!