Guo Nian – Welcome the Water Snake

“It’s the Chinese New Year Festival today,” I noted.

Babess gasped.  “I have to go to that!”

I grinned at her.  “I know you do, sweetheart.  We’ll go, as soon as the jobs are done.”  She has been talking about Chinese New Year for a number of weeks now.  They’ve been studying it at daycare, making lanterns and flags and dragons and reading books about New Year and China.

The kitchen floor was vacuumed, and then she washed it too!  She also made a great effort to tidy her room.  While the older children were still squabbling about their jobs, Babess and I took the bus to the festival.

We saw lion dances and dragons, lots of colourful costumes and lanterns, everyone smiling and having a great time.  It took us a while to find the food, and by then the rest of the family had caught us up.  We feasted on dimsums, pork buns and stir-fried rice, and bought paper dragons for the kids to play with at home.

Babess liked the red lanterns hanging everywhere, and there was a stall selling little ones, not expensive.  “I want one for my bedroom,” she explained, “because there used to be a terrible monster called Nian, and he would eat everything! Especially children! But he doesn’t like red, so he’s scared of red lanterns and goes away.”

The lady selling the lanterns was impressed with her grasp of the traditional story (and so was I – I hadn’t known all that!), and so I bought her a lantern which is hanging in her room.  She was delighted.

(I must add, she’s not scared of Nian – she knows it’s a story, but enjoys pretending to be frightened).

Happy New Year!

© UpsideBackwards 2013.

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: