September 30, 2012 marks the day in the Korean lunar calendar when the entire nation of Korea takes time to reflect on thanksgivings and get together with family. Chuseok (추석), as it is called in Korean, is celebrated on August 15 on the lunar calendar and commemorates the time when the agrarian people would give thanks to their ancestors for the year’s abundant harvest. Remember that ancient Korea used to be very much a country based on agriculture and engaged in ancestral worship.
Nowadays, the modern Koreans still celebrate this day by taking a holiday for three full days and celebrating with their families from all over the country. We’ve seen enough of Kdramas to know what the traffic jams are like on this holiday as families travel from their homes to meet at a relative’s house. 🙂
Having lived in the United States for most of my life, I don’t typically celebrate Chuseok, especially the ancestral worship part since I’m Christian, but as I delve more into my Korean culture and continue in my blogging, it dawned on me that the Korean Thanksgiving would be the perfect time to celebrate my many thanksgivings/blessings. After all, we twinkles hail from all over the world, living in countries that have very different dates for observing thanksgiving. And so, since this website attracts those who are interested in Korean dramas and Korean culture, I thought it fitting that I celebrate Chuseok with you all, rather than on Thanksgiving Day in November when Americans celebrate the year’s blessings.
The picture above reflects the standard tasty treat that is made especially for this time of the year. Called songpyeon (the “song” is pronounced with a long “o” sound), these small rice cakes are loaded with sweetness inside, and oftentimes, families will gather around a table and make them for the big thanksgiving feast. Even little children are taught how to make these if the families are so inclined to delve into this old Korean tradition, although many modern Koreans nowadays simply purchase these rice cakes from the store.
All in all, Chuseok is a time for thanksgiving, and I wanted to express my thanks for this community of twinkles. This year has seen a lot of changes to “Musings of a Twinkie,” the biggest ones being the move from my old blogspot address to this new one and the collaboration with Jules from across the Atlantic Ocean. Hopefully, this small community of Kdrama lovers will continue to stay strong over the years as we gush over our beloved shows…and our favorite characters and actors. LOL
So from one twinkle to another, I wish you all a happy Chuseok and count my blessings for this little online community!