Every year, dedicated post office workers hop on their scooters to deliver a nation’s New Year’s cards, and it’s so much fun to watch!

New Year is a seriously huge deal in Japan, with all manner of traditions and superstitions, but one of the most important parts of the season are the New Year’s cards: nengajo.

▼ A collection of nengajo sent to toy company Takara Tomy

Rather than send Christmas cards, families across Japan will send their yearly tidings to loved ones with a nengajo, usually a flat, printed postcard with a printed design. These cards can range from cute to blood-curdling, but the important thing is that they get delivered on time. And that’s no mean feat, considering how many households are all sending them to each other across the nation!

So what is a post office to do, to ensure everyone gets their New Year card on January 1? Well, as long as you post your cards by 25 December, the post office guarantees that they’ll arrive at their destination on the first day of the New Year. And on January 1 every year, the men and women of the postal force rev up the engines on their motorcycles, load up with stacks of cards and set off at top speed.

You can actually submit your nengajo to your post office from early December, and they’ll hold them for delivery. You may have noticed red, white and gold advertising at your local post office, advertising their own printed nengajo: all those cards accumulated throughout the year go out at the same time, hence the need for all those special motorcycles.

▼ The trunk is labelled: “Delivering Nengajo”! This year they boast “last nengajo delivery of the Heisei era”, too.

The post office has its work cut out for it at New Year, between figuring out where the cards need to end up and resisting the allure of the New Years’ Kit Kat boxes they stock. So they take on swathes of volunteers, offering short two-week contracts even for high school students, in order to make the workload that bit more manageable.

Working during one of Japan’s most beloved holiday periods is quite the commitment, but it means that families across the country can enjoy the well-wishes from their loved ones (and the cute card designs), no matter where they live. That deserves a round of applause!

▼ As a bonus, here’s the “running of the postal service” from 2018.

The Internet definitely seemed impressed by their work in general:

“They go out even though it’s this freakin’ cold? Hard-working doesn’t even begin to describe those guys…”
“They look like workers swarming out of the factory from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”
“I did this as a part-timer once! Still managed to shock me, though.”
“They look like the folks dashing at Comiket.”

With post offices showing such commitment to the annual tradition of nengajo, we can’t wait to see next year’s motorcycle dash! Wonder if the future might bring some tech upgrades for the riders?

Source: My Game News Flash
Featured image: Twitter/@yonyonmo