Tomorrow is Chinese New Year!! Yay!! This year is the year of the Snake… Psssssssssssssst. ^_^
Most people I know get their Chinese sayings wrong so here’s just some quick and easy sayings you need to know before saying it in front of a Chinese / Asian person… (I wish I could get some audio recordings for you here).
Chinese New Year Sayings (Traditional Chinese characters)
Pronunciation (Cantonese in Yale/Mandarin)
Canto: san nin faai lok
Mando: xin nian kuai le
Happy New Year
Canto: cheun nin faai lok
Mando: cun nian kuai le
Happy Spring Festival (Mainland China use this to differentiate between Western and Chinese New Year)
Canto: gung hei faat choi
Mando: gong xi fa cai
Wishing you happiness and prosperity (people consider this saying as ‘Happy New Year’ … It’s not really)
Canto: nin nin yau yu
Mando: nian nian you yu
May you have more throughout the day (as in money luck and fortune)
Jumping onto other bits of info you need to know about Chinese New Year. It is usually celebrated either in January or February every year depending on the Chinese Lunar Calendar.
There are 12 animals that are celebrated, and only one of those 12 animals is celebrated once every 12 years! There are many links and stories out there on the Internet about it, so I don’t think I need to explain the story of the Chinese Zodiac. But here’s a clip I found on YouTube if you haven’t heard the story… (It took me a long time to choose a good one to show here!! O_o)…
For kids it’s a time of the year to get rich but it depends on how many family members they know and if those family members are married or not. Special red envelopes (紅包 hung baau or 利是 lei si) that are designed for Chinese New Year are given to them. In Hong Kong or China the amount of money will vary depending on how rich or poor the family is… So I wonder who will be receiving these red envelopes soon… (although I’m not married and I am giving these away to some friends’ kids! I’m not that stingy!)…
Aren’t these Red Envelopes cool?!
Every year China Town, Chinese restaurants and shops all celebrate this festival! And every year it’s ALWAYS busy!! Everyone wants to see the Dragon Dance and hear the banging of drums and the clashing of cymbals… And usually there’s a mini concert. Heheheh. And I always try to avoid the area during this time of the year especially when the celebrations are on the weekend! However Miss Pinky wants to go… So I will be there in the evening! I went to China Town a few days ago, and they’ve put up the lanterns as they do every year and during every Chinese festival! See how pretty they all are…