February 3, 2009

Spring is here?

Originally meaning "the time in between seasons", SETSUBUN now  means "the beginning of spring"..and in Japan that is today. 

February 3rd is the Setsubun festival day and in many shrines across the nation, handfuls of beans are thrown at people to ward off evil and welcome good fortune.  At homes with children, the father often wears a mask of an "oni" (goblin dude) and the children will go wild throwing beans at the oni while screaming "oni wa soto, fuku wa uchi" (goblins go out, good fortune come in).

I don't have any children, but I am contemplating whether or not to start throwing beans at my husband....

If you have been to the grocery store in Japan lately you would have seen bags of roasted soybeans like can eat the beans, they make for good tsumami (snacks that go good with sake or beer).  I do not recommend eating the ones you've thrown around the house...

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