The year 2012 is coming to an end and the year 2013 is about to begin.
Within any cultures, there are certain customs that are kept on certain days or periods. Some of them may be similar and some may be totally different, and even strange, according to other countries or ethnic groups.
Today, I want to introduce a custom, which used to be kept on December 31 in Korea. The reason why I said “used to” is because it is hardly kept nowadays, as customs change over the years.
The old Korean custom is that we don’t sleep on the last day of the year, December 31. The background of that custom is a legend that if anybody sleeps that night, his/her eyebrows would turn white.
We used to play pranks on friends who slept that night, which was to make their eyebrows white by pasting wheat powder on them to shock those friends.
The purpose behind the custom is to have everyone light candles everywhere in the house and don’t sleep that night, in order to reflect on their conduct during the passing year under the light and to prepare for a new year.
The custom encourages people to meet a new year with clear and pure mind without sleeping.
Though the custom is hardly kept at the present time, I just want to ruminate on its spirit.The last day of December is meant to greet the first day of a new year.
I wish that you’ll have a wonderful new year and that you will keep an ongoing positive relationship with us in the new year.
Jean Youn is the owner of Value Village Cleaners at 912 West Glenoaks Boulevard in Glendale 91202. For details on services, coupons and more, check out the Value Village Cleaners website here