Chinese Language Lessons, My Adventures

Culture Lesson Three!

Happy Chinese New Year! It is currently the year of the Rat and everyone who know about China must be knowledgeable about the New Year. So let’s dive into the wonders of Chinese New Years for someone living in China.

Chinese New Year begins on January 25th, 2020. It marks the start of a new lunar cycle and is one of the most important holidays in Asia. There are a few traditions that most people do when celebrating the holiday.

  1. Catching up with family and friends is a huge part of the holiday. In 2019, 3 billion trips were projected to be made during the holiday.
  2. Adding some color is important, red especially. Red is a lucky color f fortune, warding off the evil lion -monster that threatens during the new year. Chinese people put the color everywhere in a celebration.
  3. Share the wealth! The giving of little red packets with money is a fun treat. The giver puts as much money as they want into the packet and then give it to someone as a present. It can even be done online now using Wechat.
  4. Watch some traditional dance shows or firework shows! There is nothing that says celebration more than fireworks!
  5. Go to a temple and pray! This normally happens on the third day. There is incense and praying to deities for blessings and good luck in the new year. Some temples even put on lion dances.  

For an American Wizard Abroad this holiday was not nearly as much fun. You are home with your roommate because most of your Chinese friends are home with their family. You can still explore things BUT most places, including restaurants, are closed leaving you without any food to eat. It was a long week. That being said, it is a wonderfully culturally rich holiday.

Happy New Year!

Mark Oliver Wizard Goldstein

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