Happy Year of the Sheep!

sheep

Isn’t China the best? In case one New Year wasn’t enough, I get to have 2! The 2nd New Year being even more spectacular than the 1st. If I’m being honest, the first one kind of fizzled like a wet match, but the 2nd one…boy was it grand.

I must admit that when I go home this year after graduation, I will miss this 2 week holiday (or maybe it’s just 1 week) where fireworks go off like explosions every night and the entire city shuts down. Then again, there are a lot of things that I will miss.

Usually during the Chinese New Year, I’m pretty nonchalant about it. Once I was asked with utter shock and disbelief by a Chinese girl, “So you don’t celebrate Chinese New Year in your country?” I even began to question my loyalty to January 1st, yet I still remained nonchalant. But this year, I’ve just felt so proud about this long-standing tradition of our…I mean of the Chinese nation.

I guess it’s a side effect of living here so long and then realising that everything I took for granted, I can’t take for granted anymore. So before I ramble any further, Happy New Year!

In honour of the new year, I thought I’d put together a little list of things that are done culturally to ring in the new year. Bear in mind, I’m not an expert.
"Hong Bao" - People give these as gifts with money inside.
“Hong Bao” – People give these as gifts with money inside.
Going Home - Chinese New Year is the worst time to travel. It's the one time of the year where the entire country gets a holiday, so everyone makes the train back to their home towns during that week.
Going Home – Chinese New Year is the worst time to travel. It’s the one time of the year where the entire country gets a holiday, so everyone takes the train back to their home towns during that week.
Red Lanterns - 've seen these hung everywhere, though I'm not sure why
Red Lanterns – I’ve seen these hung everywhere, supermarkets, restaurants, homes…everywhere
Rhyming Couplets - Poetic rhyming phrases hung around doors
Rhyming Couplets – Poetic rhyming phrases hung around doors
Jiaozi - Chinese dumpling is eaten on the eve of he New Year
Jiaozi – Chinese dumplings are eaten on the eve of he New Year
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