Saturday, January 28, 2012

The Year of the Dragon . . .

Gong Xi Fa Cai

                         or Happy New Year!

In 2004 our family was considering a move to Hong Kong.  My husband had created a business that a company in Hong Kong wanted to buy and have us live on site for two years during the transition.

Our families were devastated.  At the time we had just the one son, who was two and a half.  The grandparents and aunt were not happy, the mere thought of them missing out on their only grandchild growing up was major. 

We started planning when they would come to HK, setting up video conferencing and flights back home.  We were aiming on seeing each other every two months.  Thankfully, after I visited for 1 week, tried to buy a house somewhat like ours here back in the states, and the sheer loneliness of him being at work and me with the driver and real estate agent was more than I wanted to sign on to do.

One benefit to our trip and almost adventure was learning to appreciate the Chinese culture.  I will be honest, my appreciation didn't come until after the deal was blown, I was back home in the US and I was able to go back to HK as a visitor and not someone looking to live there.

In 2007, back home in the USA!!!!, we decided to go to Dim Sum at our usual Chinese restaurant over in Chinatown, Richardson - Beltline & Greenville area.  We have been going to this restaurant for years, but this one Sunday at the end of January was when we went.  It was crazy busy, but we got a table and started a tradition of doing Dim Sum for Chinese New Year.

Back in the days it was just our family but we have been so blessed to 1 - have friends who trust us enough to go for Dim Sum and 2 - friends who actually go!

5 Chinese New Years later . . .

We are still going strong and we have grown from our family of 3 to 22 of us celebrating the New Year! 

There are several things you must do if you are going to celebrate with the Chinese New Year with us:
1 - you must get your picture taken in our Chinese hat with tassel - we have only one, it gets passed around

2 - you must feed the Lions $1 for good luck and prosperity

3 - you must grab any piece of chewed up lettuce the Lion spits out - another good luck item

4 - you must come hungry and agree to have a good time!

We have moved from the back, in a hard to see the stage spot to a primo spot.  We have a perfect view of the stage, the dancers, the drums and they visit our tables first.  The lions dance for us.  Wiggle their tails.  They bat their eye, and shimmy all around us collecting the red envelopes filled with $1.

Our family isn't Chinese but we have enriched our children's lives by providing them an opportunity to see and participate in other cultural celebrations.  I am already on the books for 3 tables for next year.  Care to join us?

Jake with the Gold Lion.
Red Lion waiting to perform.
Silver Lion dancing for our table.

Green Lion eating Hattie's head.

1 comment:

  1. We had a GREAT time! Thank you so much for allowing us to join you for the experience of this Chinese tradition.