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Happy New Year

And welcome to the Awa Mountain Dog blog and shop.

In Japan, the New Year is basically our Christmas, a time of tradition, family, food, and ritual. The wreath pictured above is a 'shimenawa', one sitting on the cabin door at the moment actually.

The tradition stems from a legend that the Japanese sun god, Amaterasu Oomikami, shut himself away in a cave. Of course this was a major problem since without the presence of the sun god the earth was plunged into perpetual darkness. The other gods devised a plan to get him out of the cave by throwing a party in front of his door. The trick worked, Amaterasu came out, and they quickly pulled the god into the open and put a 'shimenawa' on the door so it was impossible to go back in.

And there you have your daily dose of Japanese culture. Happy belated New Year everyone. 

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