Sunday, April 8

A Low-Key Easter

Easter is one of those holidays that hasn't been embraced and altered in Japan. We were in a specialty store the other day where they had a rare display of foil wrapped rabbits with a sign next to them explaining in a brief paragraph what Easter was. Having been called on more than once to explain to students what Easter is about, one paragraph is impressive.
happy easter (thanks grandma!)

We used to do more for Easter but since moving to the city, it has been a holiday that goes rather unnoticed in this apartment. We could do an egg hunt with a local foreign family group, but that would take effort. We could do it in our local park, I suppose, but the kids are doing their upmost to blend in so such an activity would go against their efforts (no matter how fruitless those efforts may actually be). So our Easter has evolved to opening the box from grandma and eating American candy until everyone is grouchy.

A far cry from the Easter I knew as a kid, running around my grandmother's yard in pinchy paten-leather shoes, racing my cousins for eggs either real or plastic. In warm sunny Florida, egg hunts were an early morning competition, as candy in the plastic eggs would melt and the dyed boiled eggs would spoil. There were always those eggs that went unfound until a month or so later when the stench would give away their hiding spot. The afternoon had its own delights, pies and cake and deviled eggs and ham and potato salad and scrupulous pillaging of the sacred Easter basket. It was an event eagerly awaited every year until I reached that cusp of childhood when being bored was more important than finding all the eggs.
happy easter (thanks grandma!)
As with many things that come from raising kids in a culture unlike the one I was shaped in, I do feel a little sad that the kids won't have the same memories of Easter that I enjoy. I also know that they have different holidays to one day reminisce about like pounding mochi for New Year's or throwing beans at ogres. In the end, it is not really the specific holiday that matters but the memory, glowing and significant, that they will be able to reach for as they reflect on their childhood and how it spiraled into who they have become.
happy easter (thanks grandma!)

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