Saturday, February 14, 2015

My Japanese Valentine

Sometimes you just get lucky. You meet that person and you get to spend the rest of your life with them. Recently I met a couple who re-new their vows every year as a reminder of how much they love each other. They choose a different location, different country or different culture, but each time they're reminding themselves how lucky they are. And Valentine's Day would be the day to say it. Except of course, in Japan, where it's just a little bit different.

On Valentine's Day, February 14, every girl in the country has the opportunity of sending the boy of her dreams a card or a gift, sometimes anonymously and sometimes not, but it will remain unrequited, at least for some time. Valentine's day is a one way street in Japan, it's up to the girls rather than the boys, but that's not quite the end of the story. On March 14 the order of the universe is restored and it's the boys turn to be romantic. That day is known as "White Day", the day the boys have to get their act together.

And so on Valentine's Day the flowers will be sent, chocolates eaten, and probably a bottle of wine or two will be opened. Nice dinners at romantic locations will be organised and a million Valentine's cards will be written and sent in the hope of return in a month's time. And the boys? Well, they'll be keeping a record of who they received them from and developing the plan of who to return them to on March 14. And how...

I would for you

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