Christmas actually started in October here in Nagoya. Literally, on Halloween day they were stocking the shelves with Christmas items and putting up decorations. I kept yelling to myself – “but its not even Thanksgiving yet!” Then I realized that the Japanese don’t celebrate Thanksgiving so I guess it made sense. Except the Japanese don’t really celebrate Christmas either. The main religion in Japan is Shinto which I’m still unsure about. But it has to do with many Gods..and Jesus isn’t one of them! So it seems like many people celebrate Christmas for the festivities. Which I guess is what most Americans do these days too. I’ve actually been told that Christmas in Japan is actually more of a dating holiday…kind of like Valentines Day in America. When I ask my students “What do you do for Christmas?” a lot of them reply with “cleaning.” Its tradition in Japan to clean your house thoroughly before the New Year..so you can have a fresh start, and as you have probably guessed like most Asian countries. New Years in the real celebration..more of that to come!
Anyways, Mike and I have started to get our selves in to the Christmas cheer and at the same time see how many different Christmas trees we can find in Nagoya since we won’t be having one this year.