Celebrating Korean Father’s Day in Pandemic


Yeadam Kim

Delicious food, sweet-fragrance of a bunch of flowers, laughter, and tears. Every 8 May, we gather as a family and express our gratitude to our parents on this lovely day, Father’s Day. It is not too much to say that Father’s Day is the most precious day where family get together and feel the warmth of each other. However, this year, the scene of this beautiful day seemed quite different compared to the past.

Yes, indeed, the pandemic situation could not stop people from celebrating this beautiful day, but in some places, it became impossible for some people to gather around in a way we used to do. Due to the virus, hospitals and sanatorium had to be very cautious in allowing people’s visiting, since hospitalized patients are most vulnerable to the risk of being infected, which can possibly worsen their illnesses. Therefore, family members of the patients had to use video call or see each other’s faces with a glass window between them.

The situation also changed the way people express their gratitude and love to their parents. According to the survey by SBS, people had responded that the gifts they want to avoid were books, cakes, and flowers, and the best were cash, phone call, and letters. However, due to the pandemic situation, there were changes in this trend. People started to use flower delivery service, and flower bouquets with cash were the best among them. A florist had explained this situation by saying, “ People get flowers when there is something to celebrate, and adding to that, nowadays, people also design bouquets using cash”.

Additionally, the overall increased rate of purchases in the domestic flower market was due to the drop in prices of flowers and a decreased rate of an overseas trip. Because of the virus, people couldn’t import fine quality flowers from outside, thus made remaining flowers in the country cheaper than before. Also, since people couldn’t travel abroad, they had no choice but to spend time with their families within the country and, thus, the purchases in the domestic flower market has increased.

Therefore, as the situation is not the same as it was in the past, there were lots of emerging new and creative ways of showing appreciation to the parents on Father’s Day. One of them I would like to suggest is writing a parent’s autograph by doing an interview. The only thing you need is a pen and several pieces of paper. First, do an interview. Ask your parents about their memorable moments, how their childhood looked like, the dream they had in their younger ages, and so on. Write them down on a piece of paper. Second, organize the context. The introduction will be about the basic information of your parents, the body will be about the interview and summarize the whole context in your conclusion. You can also add your impression, pictures of your parents, or a thank you letter. Lastly, decorate the autograph by pasting a paper carnation.

So many people have been suffering from the hopeless days they are in due to the pandemic situation, but one thing the virus cannot take away from us is love towards our family members and our parents. We should not forget that we can get over these hardships through encouragement, supports, and comforts we get from, and give to, our parents.