Monday, 15 February 2016

After reading - Stories from the Five Towns

How do you usually begin the new year?

On the New Year’s eve, my family usually watch the famous TV show called “Kouhaku Uta Gassen”. It is a music program which has a long history. It is broadcasted until 23:45. Since we go to bed late, we begin the New Year slowly.

I cook “Ozouni” for breakfast. Ozouni is one of traditional dish for New Year. Ozouni soup is made from dried bonito and put rice cakes and various vegetables such as carrots, radish, Japanese mushroom called shiitake, etc. As the rice cake is sticky and chewy, we wish for long life by eating Ozouni.

After we finish the breakfast, we visit our parent’s house for seasonal greeting. The families get together and eat and drink a lot. We usually eat Osechi which is another traditional dish for New Year. The kids get Otoshidama from grandparents and uncle/aunt. Otoshidama is money in the small paper envelop which has the cartoon character. It is a gift from adults during the New Year.

During the New Year holiday, we go to shrine to pray for good luck throughout the year. Every shrine gets crowded with the people and there is a long queue for Omikuji. Omikuji is paper fortune which we can pull out from box. We talk about who has the best luck and buy Omamori which is a charm against bad luck.