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Sunday, February 14, 2010

Saint Valentine's Day and Chinese New Year's Day

February 14th is Saint Valentine's Day and also syunsetsu(春節:Chinese New Year's Day) this year.

New Year celebrations are also held in Yokohama's Chinatown. These celebrations feature parades, dragon dances, lion dances, firecrackers, Chinese gongs, Chinese old harps, illuminations and Chinese lanterns.
Before the Meiji Era, Japanese people also celebrated the New Year in the lunar calendar. I feel the severity of the winter, but also feel sign of spring in February. So I think that New Year's Day in the lunar calendar is appropriate to the start of a year.

In Japan, only women give chocolate to men on Saint Valentine's Day. This custom became popular due to marketing efforts by confectionery makers. Many women buy chocolate for their sweethearts and obligation chocolate for co-workers.
Recently there has been a change. more and more women buy Elegant brand-name chocolate as a treat for themselves and affordable one for their female friends. In contrast, due to the recession, women buy less obligation chocolate for co-workers than before.


the 2-centimeter-high chocolate bears. Probably for female friends.

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