Saturday, February 24, 2007

Gung Hay Fat Choy!

The Year of the Pig was ushered in with fun, frivolity, and a lot of really loud noises last Sunday! The Husbeast and I headed up to Chinatown with (blogless) Susi and Nick to watch the lion dancers, hear the fireworks, and gobble up a sinful amount of dim sum. Of course there was plenty of running about, giggling, and general mischief-making.

First order of the day: shooting off an air cannon! Wheeeeeeeeeeeee! We spent a good part of the day getting showered with confetti. It took a couple of shampoos to get all the glitter out of my hair.

I wish there was some way to share all the wonderful clanging and banging that accompanies the lion dancers up and down the streets. It's so joyous! The folks in red are the dancers entourage who clear the path for them.

For those of you who have never seen an Authentic Chinese New Year celebration, the lion dancers enter the local businesses to collect a monetary tribute. This guarantees that the lion will protect the business from bad luck for the year to come. There were several troupes of lion dancers parading the streets of Chinatown. When one street became to crowded, we scurried off to another block to check out another troupe. Fun!

Chinese New Year always pulls at my heart strings a bit. Ten years ago (oops! eleven years ago) I was living and teaching in China where I experienced my first real Chinese New Year. I lived in a wheat province (no rice), and spent many hours helping a kind neighbor, Mrs. B, make jiao zha - dumplings for her family's celebration. It was hard work, but being included in a family while a million miles from my own was well worth the sore wrists and shoulders. of my favorite parts of Chinatown: unfortunately translated business names.


MUDNYC said...

How fun! And great that you can still be connected so authentically with your time in China, I know that means a lot. We went down to Chinatown last year and I remember a lot of rain and red rivers running in the streets from all the confetti. Go go year of the PIG (I'm an ox)!

Carrie said...

It sounds like a fantastic celebration! What fun! I'm showing the kids your pics tomorrow. They'll love it. My best friend had her daughter the other day, and we're so excited she came in the year of the pig. Lucky, right?

john said...

Young fish balls? Crack my shit up!!!!!!!!!!!!