Kumade (熊手) & Tori-no-ichi (酉の市)
We bought a “Kumade(熊手)” at the Torinoichi (酉の市) market held in Asakusa! Torinoichi(酉の市) is an event held at temples and shrines associated with eagles and birds, such as Tori-no-temples, which are numerous in the Kanto region.
Held every year on the “day of the Tori”(酉の日) in November, visitors purchase lucky charms such as “Kumade”to report their good fortune for the year and wish for good fortune in the following.
The Kumade, used as a tool for raking up fallen leaves and other debris, is said to be “a tool for raking up luck” or “a tool for raking up gold and silver” because of its shape and function, and has come to be treated as a lucky charm that brings luck, fortune, and prosperity to business.
When purchasing a Kumade for the first time, choose the smallest size possible. This is because it is believed that it is better to gradually increase the size from year to year so as to stir up more luck and fortune than in the previous year. It is said that if you buy a smaller Kumade than the previous year, your good fortune and luck will decrease, so be careful when choosing the size.
Basically, a Kumade should be displayed higher than a person’s head. If it is at an entrance, it should face the entrance, and if elsewhere, it should face east (for good luck in business), south (for good position and honor), and west (for good luck in money). Do not display it facing north. When you dispose of your rake, bring it to the following year’s Tori-no-ichi (rooster market) and place it at the “Kumaten-odome place” while expressing your gratitude for the year.
We chose a Kumade with “Laughing Gate(笑門)” written on it. We chose it because we like the Japanese proverb, “When laughter comes to the gate, good fortune comes to the gate”. We hope to be our cooking class with lots of laughter and learning!