A couple of years ago, I wrote a short story for Luke Crane's Burning Wheel supplement called "Blossoms Are falling," about a boy in Heian Japan. The story opens with a man about to play the first note of the day on a shakuhachi, or bamboo flute...and is interrupted by a messenger announcing that the Emperor of Japan is going to visit.
The story is set in the rural town of Magome, along the Nakasendo Highway. The Nakasendo was a 300 mile footpath from Edo to Kyoto. The governor is from Kyoto, and hopes to impress the Emperor during his visit enough to be sent back to Kyoto and the civilization he's missed since his posting.