Chinese New Year

系统文章 类别:英文 时间:2010-07-01 00:00:00
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The celebration of the Chinese New Year may last only a few days including the
New Year's Eve, The New Year season actually starts from the 15th of the last
month and ends at the 15th of the first month of the new year. By tradition,
Chinese will be busy in buying presents, decorating their houses, preparing
food and making new clothes for the New Year. During that period, all
transportation, in particular railway, will be busy in bringing Chinese back
to their own hometown for a family reunion on the Chinese New Year Eve.
Days before the New Year, every family is busy giving its house a thorough
cleaning, hoping to sweep away all the ill-fortune there may have been in the
family to make way for the wishful in-coming good luck. People also give their
doors and windowpanes a new paint, usually in red color. They decorate the
doors and windows with paper-cuts and couplets with the very popular theme of
"happiness", "wealth", "longevity" and "satisfactory marriage with more
children". Paintings of the same theme are put up in the house on top of the
newly mounted wallpaper. In the old days, various kinds of food are tributes
to the ancestors. The Eve of the New Year is very carefully observed. Supper is
a feast, with all members coming together. One of the most popular courses is
jiaozi, dumplings boiled in water. "Jiaozi" in Chinese literally mean "sleep
together and have sons", a long-lost good wish for a family. After dinner, it
is time for the whole family to sit up for the night while having fun playing
cards or board games or watching TV programs dedicated to the occasion. They
also go to flower market for last moment shopping for flower and foodstuff.
Light will be kept on the whole night. At midnight, fireworks will light up
the whole sky and firecrackers make everywhere seem like a war zone. People's
excitement reaches its zenith. Very early the next morning, children greet their
parents and receive their lucky money in red wrapping. Then, the family starts
out to say greetings from door to door, first their relatives and then their
neighbors. It is a great time for reconciliation. Old grudges are very easily
cast away during the greetings. The air is permeated with warmth and
friendliness. During and several days following the New Year's day, people are
visiting each other, with a great deal of exchange of gifts. The New Year
atmosphere is brought to an anti-climax fifteen days away where the Festival
of Lanterns sets in. It is an occasion of lantern shows and folk dance everywhere.
One typical food is the Tang Yuan, another kind of dumplings made of sweet rice
rolled into balls and stuffed with either sweet or spicy fillings. The Lantern
Festival marks the end of the New Year season and afterwards life becomes daily
routines once again. Customs of observing the New Year vary from place to place,
considering that China is a big country not only geographically, but also
demographically and ethnically. Yet, the spirit underlying the diverse
celebrations of the Chinese New Year is the same: a sincere wish of peace and
happiness for the family members and friends.