Doyo no ushi no hi


It is “Doyo no ushi no hi” today.

土用[どよう]の丑[うし]の日[うし]は陰暦[いんれき] (= the Luna calendar)で決[]められています。ですので、毎年[まいとし][]が少[すこ]し違[ちが]いますが、大体[だいたい]いつも7月[がつ]の終[]わりごろです。今年[ことし]は今日[きょう]が土用[どよう]の丑[うし]の日[]。日本[にほん]では、この日[]、うなぎを食[]べる習慣[しゅうかん] (= custom)があります。うなぎは、ビタミン(= vitamin) AやBがたくさんあるので、体[からだ]にいいそうです。特[とく]に7月[がつ][]わりごろは、日本[にほん]はとても暑[あつ]くてしっかり食[]べることが大切[たいせつ]です。この習慣[しゅうかん]は、19世紀[せいき] (= the 19th Century)のはじめごろ、うなぎ屋[]さんがうなぎをたくさん売[]るために宣伝[せんでん] (= advertisement)をしたので始[はじ]まったそうです。今[いま]では日本人[にほんじん]はみんな「土用[どよう]の丑[うし]の日[]にはうなぎ!」と考[かんが]えるようになりました。

I do not know how to translate this “doyo no ushi no hi” to English (does anybody know??). It is determined according to the Luna calendar every year. So the date changes every year, but is normally around the end of July. It is today this year. We, Japanese have a custom to eat unagi (= eel) dishes on this date. Eel contains a lot of Vitamin A and B and is really good for you. As you might know, it is very hot and muggy now in Japan and eating nutritious things like eel is important.
This custom started around the early 19th Century; an eel shop started advertising this concept – eating eel on “doyo no ushi no hi” is good for you – to sell its products. Nowadays every single Japanese faithfully believes that we should eat eel on the day.
This page of Asahi Shimbun Newspaper shows a photo of an eel restaurant. It looks really yummy… it is not summer here, but I would not mind eating it now!

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