• Beniko

19. Maiko’s Day Off


We are often asked if Maiko (舞妓) and Geiko (芸妓) have any official day-off. To answer the question, yes, we do. When I was a Maiko, I had my day off only once a month usually in the end of the month.

Our day offs were referred to as Kokyubi (公休日, official day off). When I was still new, I usually spent my Kokyubi at my parents' house, and after a while, I began going out with my favorite colleagues.

As soon as the Ozashiki (お座敷, Maiko banquet) in the previous night of Kokyubi was finished, we untied our hair at once, and enjoyed a girl talk about what to wear, where to go. We stayed up very late until Okasan (お母さん, Female owner of Yakata) scolded us. Since Kokyubi was the only chance for us to wear Western clothes, we were excited just like children the night before their excursion trip.

In the morning of Kokyubi, Okasan calls a cab for me to my parents’ house, and I return to Yakata (屋形, Maiko house) next morning by a cab that Okasan arranged. As such, everything was arranged by Okasan so that I barely had any chance to use the public transportation.

At the time I retired from Geiko (芸妓) and got married, I had no idea even how to buy tickets of buses and subways. I really didn't know I had to tell where to go to the taxi driver. For me, taxi was the thing which brought me to where I had to go automatically. Again, it was just because everything was arranged by Okasan.

Silly? But it's true. Maiko is still supposed to be treated that way.

Thanks.

Talk to you later.

Beniko

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