June is the rainy month in most parts of Japan.
If you are a girl living in a city, June means ‘umbrellas’ and ‘roll cakes’.
The umbrella is essential for island life at this time. Japanese girls greet the season with a small cache of umbrellas that range from functional to fashionable. The functional umbrella is on hand when the forecast is unpredictable. These cheap, push-button minis are easy to stow if you are out running errands or meeting friends for a drink. They work well-enough to fend off a flash storm and if the wind wrecks the frame, who cares!
The fashionable full size umbrella appears more often when the forecast predicts rain. Japanese girls confront inclimate weather in style. If you were out for a day of shopping, you will see girls coordinating umbrella and outfit. The fashionable umbrellas is better too. It features a full size protective canopy and sturdy wind-resistant frame.
Now that we have our umbrellas in hand, let’s get a roll cake!
Roll cake sales spike in June. Why?! These tasty sponge and fruit filled cakes become especially attractive because of their cylindrical form. When you are out shopping for sweets, managing your umbrella is job one. The likelihood is too great that you will tip and crash a traditional flat cake inside the box.
The roll cake, however, is a confection that can roll around inside a cake box without losing shape. Then you get home. You put your umbrella away. You crack open your cake box and you roll your roll cake out onto a plate for everyone to share. Yum!