A kindergarten boy in China became an instant celebrity when his first-day-of-school photos surfaced on social media.
The boy, identified as a 3-year-old named Youyou, went to school on September 1 for the start of the new semester.
He stood out from the rest, however, because his schoolbag contained items totally unrelated to studying.
On top of books, Youyou’s bag contained apples, instant noodles, green onions, pancakes and water chestnuts.
While it’s easily bizarre for many, his mother, surnamed Cao, explained that it’s a custom in their home city of Changshu, Jiangsu Province.
“This is part of the unique folk tradition in Changshu,” Cao said via China News. “I prepared these lucky things for him the same way my uncle did for me when I [first went to school].”
According to CGTN, the items are all homophones for lucky words relevant to a student. For example, the green onion, or cong, is a homophone for “smart” or cong ming. Apple or ping guo is a homophone for “safe” or ping an.
Funny enough, the instant noodle brand in Youyou’s bag is Unify 100, which supposedly makes students get 100% in tests.
Some might find the practice silly and inconvenient, but Youyou, most importantly, was happy to carry around the items and share them with his classmates — except for one item.
“I need to bring the green onions home. They make me a clever boy,” he said.