2016 is going out and 2017 is coming in soon.
At the end of a year, many adults in Japan prepare Otoshidama.
It is a special monetary gift children receive from their close adults during the New Year holidays.
Bills are folded and put into a small cute envelope called pochi- bukuro
and handed to the children.
How much money given to a child depends on how old the child is and,
of course, how much money you make.
Including pochi-bukuro, there are many kinds of the elaborately decorated envelopes for sale in Japan.
They are used for giving money, as gifts of cash are common in Japan for a wedding
and a funeral. It is considered rude to give cash unwrapped ,
but it is fine to present your bills naked when buying something in a store or restaurant.
Money isn’t wrapped because it’s money; it’s wrapped because it’s a gift.
“Pochi”of “Pochi-bukuro” is a dialect in Kansai region meaning something small.
When gifts are given in Japan,
“It’s only a little something” (Tsumaranai-mono desu-ga) is quite often mentioned.
Behind this expression and the word of “pochi” is the Japanese attitude to express their humble heart.
Whatever the small envelope means,
the New Year is the most exciting moment of a year for the Japanese children.
With otoshidama, they can buy expensive things that they ordinarily wouldn’t be able to buy.
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