Happy Valentine's Day!

The day for lovers has come and gone, and as I've reported before, generally the ladies give the guys gifts on February 14th in Japan. Some of my kid students bring me presents, and I wanted to show my "haul" for this year and to say thank you again!

There is a gift from one of my adult students in there too. And before you read anything into that, know that in Japan many people give gifts to friends and coworkers - there is a Japanese expression for that but I can't remember it! I do know the term "obligation gift" - a gift given in return for a gift received. And yes, I will be giving obligation gifts in return on March 14th.
I ended up with eight gifts, if I kept track properly. And they should all be visible above. Chocolate and sweets of any kind is awesome, so I'm going to enjoy these for a while!
The wrapped package under the Gaufrettes tin had Star Wars chocolates. Godiva and other fancy chocolates are always welcome, but these are quite unique so I thought you'd enjoy seeing them!


  1. I'm confused (which is actually a normal state for me). My last day in Japan two years ago was March 14, aka "White Day". I remember there being a huge line at the Calbee store in Tokyo Station - they actually had a roped off section outside the store and were only letting people in when someone left the store. IIRC the line was pretty much entirely women. I had assumed from that that women bought men gifts on White Day and men bought women gifts on Valentine's Day. But from what you're saying, it doesn't sound like that's correct.

  2. If you went during the day, that doesn't surprise me. Women do most of the shopping, actually. The housewife/stay-at-home mother is alive, well, and an honored position. And (older) guys in Japan don't seem to like sweets and snacks as much.

    It's possible the women were shopping for themselves, either treating themselves to White Day gifts or just shopping. The Calbee shop was pretty new and many stores can have long lines every day because they're really popular.