National Geographic : 1967 Feb
that many an Ainu elder believes in this legend of the Ainu's origin in space. On a hill in the Saru River valley, in fact, a monument marks the spot where the first Ainu are supposed to have come to earth. Crane's Flight Inspires a Dance One of our jaunts farthest afield took us to scenic Akan National Park in the wilds of eastern Hokkaido. An Ainu kotan stands be side Lake Akan, a glorious sheet of blue water framed by mountains, one of them a volca 292 no puffing peacefully like a reclining giant. Close to the beach here, Toyoji Teshi, the Ainu leader of the kotan, staged for us the colorful dances that draw travelers to Akan from afar. In the Crane Dance the handsomely costumed girls flapped bright capes lifted over heads and arms to imitate flying birds. For the Trembling Pine Tree Dance, the girls violent ly flung their hair backward and forward. In the Bow Dance, bearded Zenjiro Ishikawa strutted through a stylized hunting panto mime (page 271). Reticence on the part of parents hampered me a little in certain areas of my child study.