Happy New Year！ (新年快乐） Posted by Stephen on Feb 3, 2011 in Culture
Hey everyone, Happy New Years or 新年快乐 (xīn nián kuài lè)! It’s around this time of year that everyone in China celebrates the Lunar New Year. It’s a happy time, where the daily grind of China life is placed on the back burner for mutual enjoyment and celebration. People wish each other prosperity and good luck in the coming year by saying: 恭喜发财 (gōng xǐ fā cái).
A famous tradition for Chinese New Year is the lighting off of firecrackers (放鞭炮 – fàng biān pào). It is believed that doing so helps keep the evil Nian beast away, as well as other evil spirits in general. Around Spring Festival, it is not uncommon to hear firecrackers going off all day long, and on New Year’s Eve, it seems as if they never stop.
While the Lunar New Year and Spring Festival encompass weeks of tradition and celebration, February 3rd marks the actual New Year Day in Chinese lunar calendars. Even with temperatures in the negatives, it’s a time of celebration, which includes the company of friends and family, along with massive banquets, drinking and of course…loud noises.
This New Year will usher in the year of the Rabbit. My next post will cover the year of the rabbit and will explain Chinese traditions in greater depth. Until then, find some friends and family to spend time with. If you’re in need of good luck, maybe you should get yourself a good luck rabbit’s foot…with the rabbit attached.
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