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Japanese Pregnancy Traditions Aren't All That Traditional

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To: Totilo

From: Bash

RE: Spare a Rodent?

This morning wife and mother-in-law took the train to a Buddhist temple to ask for a healthy birth. As you may or may not know, this pregnancy has been rather tough on her. It was like that for Mini-Bash's, but this time seems to have more teeth that dig in and bite. The baby, says the doctor, is healthy and strong. Wife still has bad days. Today, for instance, her mother said the moment Mrs. Bashcraft got off the train, she threw up. When she got to the temple, she threw up. After lunch, ditto. When she got back on the train, and so on. (She seems fine right now as she watches TV! Just going out of the house seems to take a lot out of her.)

At the temple, she bought two talisman or amulets — what the Japanese call "mamori". The orange colored one in the picture is for the unborn baby, to protect it. When Mrs. Bashcraft went to the temple today, she took the one she kept for Mini-Bash while he was in her belly, returned it and said thank you for a healthy birth. (Yeah, I know, she was five years late, but whatever.) The other amulet, the yellow one, is to protect Mini-Bash. At the temple, she also bought a white cloth called "haraobi" which pregnant women wrap around their stomachs to keep them warm. It's basically an old fashioned maternity girdle. She won't be able to start wearing it until the 27th of this month, because according to the Buddhist calendar that the "Day of the Dog". Since dogs give birth easily, it's advised to start wearing the haraobi starting from that date. (Note: This "Day of the Dog" changes every month, so I think it's the 4th of next month, but I'm not sure.) Fingers crossed this stuff works.


In case you are curious, hit the jump for look at the back of the envelope from the Temple that the haraobi came in.

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