Today I went to Kanamara Matsuri in Kawasaki, Japan, also known as ‘Festival of the Steel Phallus.’ It is based on an old legend of a sharp-toothed hidden vagina demon, called ‘vagina dentate’, that castrated two men on their wedding nights. A local blacksmith welded an iron phallus to break the demon’s teeth. Now the phallus is enshrined and people attend this festival to pray for protection against STIs and for increased fertility. The atmosphere was amazing, lots of music, chanting, and the smoky aroma of grilled sausages, hotdogs and octopus balls from the food stalls. At midday there was a huge procession where the large pink phallus, called Elizabeth Mikoshi, was paraded around town.