A couple of weekends ago, I got to experience a doljanchi, or dol, which is a Korean tradition that celebrates the birthday of a one-year-old baby. This was Henry’s dol to be exact. The son of my wonderful accountants, Tucker and Taylor Waldruff. This celebration was by far the greatest birthday party for a baby that I have ever seen. Tucked away on the second floor banquet hall of the Woo Lae Oak in Tyson’s Corner, several guests were seated at brightly colored tables with balloons and chopstick settings. The party started off with a few words of gratitude from the parents to their guests, followed by a cute slideshow displayed on a large projection screen.
The highlight of the party was an interesting event called the Doljabi. Henry was placed on one end of a bamboo mat, while certain objects were placed in a straight line at the other end. Henry was then urged to crawl over and pick up an object, and this would symbolize his future. Some of these objects included a roll of money, which symbolized wealth. If he picked up rice, that would mean that he would never go through life hungry. An American flag symbolized politics. A baseball mitt and ball meant that he would be an athelete. Henry got two turns… can you guess what he picked?? 😀 Henry picked up the money roll and the bowl of rice to his parent’s delight. Henry’s future is looking bright!
The party also included music, dancing dragons, a ginormous birthday cake and delicious food. When I hopped into the buffet line, I had no idea that there were so many kimchee varieties. I actually went back for thirds because of the bulgogi (shame on me for being such a pig)!
Woo Lae Oak