The excesses of New Year celebrations may be behind us and many will be diligently applying resolutions, but don’t get too self-disciplined just yet – new year is about to roll round again! Gong Xi Fa Chai we’re talking about Chinese New Year of course, which runs from 05 – 19 February. 2019 is the Year of the Pig – often associated with money. And also indolence. Read into that what you will.
In Bali – and indeed across South East Asia where there are large ethnic Chinese populations – Gong Xi Fa Chai is a big deal. Most will be familiar with the dragon dances and street parades that accompany New Year’s celebrations everywhere from Beijing to London.
It’s also a great time to sample special Chinese dishes, which are not only delicious but are filled with symbolism too. Wealth your priority for 2019? Go heavy on the wonton dumplings. Sweet rice balls are connected with family togetherness. And longevity noodles? Well – they speak for themselves!
From lanterns to envelopes to clothing, red is of course the colour of the Chinese New Year – it is connected with fire and good fortune. Chinese legend tells of a fearsome beast called Nian that would terrorise villages. But unlike bulls, Nian hated the colour red and was thus defeated.