酉年（とりどし）= tori doshi
Chinese New Year – 28th January 2017
In Japan, the beginning of the lunar New Year is not a public holiday, and only really celebrated in places like Yokohama’s Chinatown. The New Year in Japan is now celebrated at the beginning of January according to the Gregorian calendar (after the Japanese moved to this calendar in 1873), but a ritual to welcome spring still marks the lunar New Year. Known as ‘Setsubun’ and now fixed to February 3rd (it used to be the day before Chinese New Year, which moves around), people drive out bad fortune by throwing dried beans at oni (devils).
The zodiac animals are still recognised each year (for example on New Year greetings cards), and so here we see DokiDoki Daruma dressed up as a Rooster for the occasion…
Lucky signs for the rooster are:
Lucky numbers: 5, 7, 8
Lucky colours: brown, gold, yellow
Lucky flowers: gladiola, impatiens, cockscomb
Lucky directions: west, southwest, northeast
In Japanese, a rooster is “niwatori” and is written as “鶏” in kanji. In the Japanese Zodiac, however, it is often called “tori” and is written as “酉”. Roosters are punctual, efficient and independent but can be impatient and narrow minded.