Japanese New Year’s Card from a Student [39/365]

Japanese Happy New Year Card

Well the winter vacation period is definitely over now. I have been back to proper work for a week and still have lots of chocolate and Christmas leftovers that I’m eating my way through.

The card I showed in my last entry was sent to me by a student I taught last year, and I promised a translation, so here goes:

respectfully, humbly

(しんしゅん の およろこび を もうしあげます)
“shinshun no oyorokobi o mōshiagemasu”
I wish you a happy new year

(きゅう ねんじゅう は たいへん おせわになりました)
“kyū nenjū wa taihen osewaninarimashita”
Thank you for all the help you gave me last year

(Note: that one is a bit beyond my abilities to pick apart piece by piece, but perhaps a reader will be able to clarify the finer points)

(ほんねん も よろしく おねがい もうしあげます)
“hon’nen mo yoroshiku onegai mōshiagemasu”
For this coming year I wish you all the best

(Note: this is effectively saying “onegaishimasu” for the coming year. “onegaishimasu” is a very useful Japanese word but is difficult to translate precisely!)

(へいせい さん じゅ いち ねん)
“heisei san ju ichi nen”
31st year of the Heisei period [equivalent to 2019 (Gregorian)]

New Year

What a nice card to receive! 🙂

In this type of layout the characters would be read top to bottom, but I’m not sure the columns would be read right to left as I had assumed. The message seems to make sense either way. Commenters please jump in on that one! 😉

Tomorrow I will talk a bit more about winter vacation things, both UK-style and Japan-style. After that I’ll outline where I want to go with this blog in 2019 🙂

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