Monday, February 1, 2010

Valentines day (and White Day) in Japan

Yes the Japanese celebrate it too.

The Japanese are renowned for their obsession with all things cute (Kitty and Care Bears are huge here even with the adult and male population!) that as Valentines day approaches it just gets even more sicklier sweet!

You can't really ignore the deluge of pink gifts taking over the shelves, the chocolates piled high and (unlike in the UK) self baking kits containing cookie mix, paper cookie holders and cute little gift bags to put them in.

Get baking girls!

Yep Valentines day is as big in Japan as it is in the UK but they do things slightly differently here. In fact in Japan they have TWO valentines days. The first day, on Feb 14th, is reserved for the women only to tell their loved ones how they feel by sending them a "honmei choko" (handmade chocolate of love). The second day, on March 14th (which they call White Day) is an opportunity for the man to reciprocate. last I find a cake tin that cost less than a tenner! too late..

How unfair! The poor women have to make the first move and even worse have to wait an agonising 4 weeks to find out if the guy is interested back.
On the plus side, on White Day the reciprocated gifts are usually a lot more expensive. White Day gifts can be anything from white marshmallows to white underwear and jewellery.

Sickly sickly valentines displays...cynical moi?!

The funniest thing I heard from a work colleague though is that in South Korea they celebrate Black Day on the 14th April for all of those singletons like me out there. On Black Day in South Korea single people get together and eat jajangmyeon (noodles with a black bean sauce).

Right, I've put the date in the diary since I have zero love interests. Now where's the licorice?

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