Thursday, February 3, 2011

Seollal 설날

Seollal 'Lunar New Year' marks the first day of the lunar calendar; however I've just learned from Wikipedia that the so-called Korean lunar calendar is, more accurately, a lunisolar calendar. While I don't really have much of an appreciation for what this means, what I can tell you is that it's a big holiday (Wed-Sun this year) ~ yay!

In the weeks leading up to Seollal, store shelves are stocked with a variety of gift giving 'classics' sold in the form of  'gift sets'. For reasons that I don't care to speculate on, SPAM is an especial favourite for givers and receivers alike (except this receiver). Clark and I have been given our fair share over the years; sometimes it's a SPAM/tuna combo, sometimes a SPAM/tuna/oil combo, and sometimes just SPAM SPAM and more SPAM.

The box says "For your Smile: SPAM contributes to your enjoyable moments through its distinct taste and quality". They certainly don't lie. I had a very enjoyable moment taking this picture and anyone who's ever eaten SPAM can surely attest to its "distinct taste and quality".

Like Christmas in Canada, Seollal is a time for Koreans to not only observe tradition, but also spend big bucks. A few cases in point:

10 apples for the bargain price of 107,000won ($95)

Or these dried  mushrooms for only 161,000won ($145)

This year, in lieu of SPAM we received (so far) a rice cake set and 5kg box of pork. Using Logan as my scapegoat, I was able to skip out on the traditional ancestral worship ceremony held every year at the home of Clark's eldest uncle. Clark is there right now though, so there's no telling what he'll come home with :P

*Edit* Clark and his father came back here late in the afternoon with lots of leftovers. Then we did sae-bae (show respect for elders by bowing in exchange for money) and now have lots of cash to blow at the upcoming baby fair.^^

Happy New Year (again)!!!!

1 comment:

  1. This was the first year I bowed out. Luckily I never have to do anything at my in-laws regardless, but as I'm the driver in our house I always have to suffer through the traffic. Pleading pregnancy got me off the hook! Funnily enough I did end up at my friend's home helping her cook all sorts of good stuff. ^.^ We received oil and rice cakes this year, which we re-gifted to the in-laws. Too bad we didn't get SPAM, I'm running low on it! ^.~ Happy New Year! See you at the Baby Fair!