Travel Japan: Pulling Omikujis
What is an Omikuji?
While you're in Japan, a visit to one of countless temples and shrines is a must. While you walk around admiring the beautiful architecture and taking in the natural scenery around you, you may notice that there is a rack full of tied up pieces of paper. Those little pieces of paper are called omikuji, or fortune papers. Bear in mind, these are not like the paper fortunes you get from the fortune cookies. But they are a part of Japanese culture and it is fun to see whether luck is on your side.
Test Your Luck!
If you want to test your luck, you can always pull an omikuji whenever you want, although traditionally, many people in Japan get theirs during New Year's Day. It costs 100 yen to grab an omikuji yourself and it's as simple as shaking the canister or reaching into a box. Take your omikuji and see what if you get a good or bad fortune. There are many different levels of fortunes you can receive: great fortune, middle fortune, small fortune, good fortune, half fortune, future fortune, and bad fortune. There are a few others but depending on the temple/shrine they may or may not have them so I have listed the main ones. Depending on which level you get, it will have different things written in regards to academics, relationships, travel, health, etc. If you happen to get a bad fortune or don't particularly like what you got, you can tie them up on the rack to leave the "bad" luck behind.
I have been lucky enough to pull great fortunes multiple years in a row which would put anyone in a great mood to start off the new year. Take a chance and try pulling one for yourself and see if you have the luck!