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Sunday, January 8, 2012

"Tabagaa"

Tabagaa Spring


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Tabagaa Spring

     GPS
     LatitudeLongitude
     N 26 22.006E 127 52.086





Tabagaa Water Spring


On the eastern side of Taba, a district in Uruma City, lies a sacred well called Tabagaa or sometimes referred to as Ubugaa. What you will see at the spring are two main water wells, a reservoir in between, and a place of worship known as an utaki. The explanation on a nearby sign does mention several stone stacking techniques used to set up this spring. They are referred to as akata, nozura, and kiriishi techniques of stacking.

At the beginning of the New Year you may see heighten activity at this location by local villagers. It is here where local villagers participate in a custom known as 'wakamizu', which is the first drawing of water on New Years Day*. The well is also used by local farmers for agricultural reasons and another practice called kauri/ubumizu which is a way of celebrating or welcoming a new baby into the world. These types of customs are similarly described at another well in Awase of Okinawa City which just happens to be named 'Ubugaa'.

Getting there. Not a difficult find. If you are on Highway 8 going towards Katsuren Castle look for this road sign to the left. Both the sign and the turn-off will be right before a Family Mart. The well is roughly 70 meters from the turn-off.

*the translated explanation did not specify which type of New Years. It could represent New Years both from the Gregorian Calendar and the Lunar Calendar (Chinese New Year).