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On Location is a new video series that features real, unscripted English and interesting places. Listen to native, natural English (mistakes and all) to understand the flow, phrases and vocabulary words of English. Listen carefully and enjoy!

Join us now as we go on location to Gion Matsuri, a famous festival in Japan. Listen carefully to the real English. We don't have scripts and we're just talking about what we're looking at. Keep your eye out for the words in orange. We'll tell you a little bit more about them in the description. You'll notice that we make a few mistakes. Listen carefully and learn real English!

This is Gion Matsuri in Kyoto, Japan. Kyoto, Japan! Ahh, Kyoto, Japan!

You're now looking at what Gion Matsuri looks like in the day time, but we want to show you what it looks like at night!

Well, Hello! This is Drew! We're coming here from Gion Matsuri in Kyoto! This is one of the largest Matsuri in Japan. A matsuri just means a festival.

And if we're going to pan around, you can take a look at all the scenes. Just go ahead, like, get around me, like, move around... ...looking down that way... Or we can move around this way, you know. So this is a street during the day, but at nighttime, here in the middle of July, it turns into a huge, bustling... bustling shop! People can come out and buy food. You can buy beetles and lots of interesting little things. We picked up a nice light saber over here. A light stick! But it's beautiful out here! It smells wonderful! Lots of interesting flavors in the air! And we're really enjoying ourselves!

Something you may have already noticed in the background is all of the light. There are so many bright lights, uh, in Japan... and especially when there's a festival, everybody likes to go out and play with light sticks and lots of flashy things that people can buy. This guy has some flashy bracelets and even this little kid over here... He's, uh, very excited about, maybe, to steal some hat. But... He thought again. Oh, no he didn't! Wait! Ah! Oh, he did! Wait!

Have a look at this really cool parade float. You can see some people on the left of the screen... they're walking up next to the... parade float which is in the middle of the street. And they're crossing over on a bridge. So, these are massive, huge parade floats that are built just for this festival in Japan.

Now we're looking at kingyo sukui, or goldfish scooping! It's really interesting to see the different kinds of carnival activities that people do in different countries. In this one, uh, you can walk up to a big tank of goldfish and you have a little... a kind of net, but it's made out of paper in the middle. So as you're scooping up the goldfish... if you can't catch the goldfish in time, the paper will break because the water is getting it wet. It's a really interesting game that you can play in Japan.

One of the cool things you've probably already noticed about Gion Matsuri is all of the interesting faces. Some of the faces are of the people that are making food. (There's all kinds of delicious food to get), but they're also incredibly hot. It's really humid outside and they're also cooking behind really hot fires.

Some of the other faces you'll see around Gion Matsuri are some of the lovely little children that live in the area. A lot of these children get the opportunity during Gion Matsuri to wear traditional Japanese robes. These are called yukata.

Thank you for joining us on our trip through Gion Matsuri! We hope you enjoyed it! We'll see you next time!


wanna - slang/casual English for "want to"

festival - social event where people meet, eat, spend time and experience culture

pan around - to move a camera slowly to capture images/video over a wide area

bustling - busy and filled with energy

beetles - type of insect/bug many children keep as pets

flavors - can refer to food, but also to anything cultural (clothes, dances, etc.)

flashy - brightly lit, or producing light

think again - decide to not do something, or change your mind

(parade) float - a parade is a procession of people on a special event and a float is a large vehicle you can see in parades.

massive - really, really big

scoop(ing) - to pick something up with a spoon (ex: scoop ice cream)

humid - the amount of water in the air

area - location or place

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