Spring Festival is in the Air

Spring Festival Decor

Spring Festival, aka Chinese New Year, will begin soon, and nowhere is it more evident then in the streets of China. All the restaurants and shops are gearing up for the festivities by decorating the windows, doors, entrances, walls, etc. with red banners and all manner of bells and whistles. The supermarkets are also selling decorations for home use. Where before there were Christmas decorations, now there are red paper cutouts, gold and red banners, glittery Chinese characters proclaiming happiness and good fortune and big red lanterns. I’ve even noticed that supermarket sections that usually sell bed sheets, socks, housewares, etc. have pulled out all the red and gold colored sheets, socks, housewares, etc. to sell for good luck.

Ivan and Spring Festival Decor
DH browsing the decorations in Linyi’s Wholesale Market

Soon the skies will be filled with the noise and sight of colorful fireworks – meant to scare away the bad spirits. Families will be reunited – already the train stations are filling up with people trying their best to make their way home. (Millions of Chinese travel far away from their homes to work or attend University. There is no guarantee they will get a train ticket home, so many start the migration early.) And, Global Gal and the DH will be doing some traveling of their own.

Last year we spent Chinese New Year in Cambodia & Thailand. This year we have decided to journey to Lhasa, Tibet on the new high-altitude railway.

Red Lanterns
Red Lanterns for sale in Linyi’s Wholesale Market

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2 Responses to “Spring Festival is in the Air”

  1. superkimbo Says:

    Yay! You’re back! Glad to see you here on WordPress again 🙂

    Chinese New Year excitement has hit KL full force as well. Red lantens (just like you pictured above) are everywhere. Alex and I even have our own “happy spring pig” hanging up in our apartment (don’t worry, it’s cardboard – and covered in glitter of course).

    Do they play the “gong xi” song in China too? Here, for the next month or so, whenever you go shopping you will hear a happy new year song that just basically repeats the words “gong xi” over and over again in a childrens sing-songy voice. It’s our indicator that it’s time for Chinese New Year (because we certainly wouldn’t be able to tell otherwise…)

    Gong Xi Fa Choi!

  2. global gal Says:

    I’m going to have to ask about the Gong Xi song! Because we missed out on most of the New Year festivities last year and because we were living in a fairly isolated environment I don’t have a really good idea of what the celebrations are like here. This year we have better Chinese contacts that allows us to experience the culture more. I imagine that even in Lhasa we will see some of the celebrations since a large part of the population is Han Chinese.

    I can picture the pig in my head perfectly – I am sure I have seen a hundred decorations just like it already!

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