Kung Hei Fat Choi!
Tomorrow marks the start of the new Lunar calendar and the Year of the Horse (my dad and I were both born in the year of the horse!).
Although I’m a quarter Chinese, I never grew up with Chinese traditions. Before coming to Hong Kong last week, I didn’t know much about Chinese New Year.
It’s incredible to see Chinese New Year decor in every storefront and in every mall. Every designer brand you can think of is in Hong Kong with their store window displays themed to the holiday. It’s not surprise considering China a such a huge market for the consumer industry.
The markets are full of vendors selling lanterns, tassels, signs, dragons, horse stuffed animals, horse trinkets, and thousands of red envelopes (used to give monetary gifts during special occasions and holidays).
I foresee a jade horse pendant in my future. What do you think?
The other big tradition is the symbol of the orange. Oranges represent good fortune and wealth so homes and businesses are decorated with lush orange trees and the market stalls sell a few different varieties of the fruit. We have a couple here at the flat in Hong Kong that are nearly 6 inches in diameter (next up: must cut it open to see what this fruit actually is inside).
Honestly. How do oranges grow to be that size?
Chinese New Year is usually a family-centered holiday, but luckily there is a huge expat community in Hong Kong that I’ll be spending my weekend with. Fireworks, food, and then Super Bowl Monday.
Happy New Year!