I guess my Chinese friends are pretty stressed up lately since the Chinese New Year is coming and they have to juggle between work and never ending preparation for CNY.
For me, it is pretty settle now. I did my spring cleaning over the weekend but still got lots to do to make my room sparkling clean. And thank God, i managed to trick my sister to shop for my CNY clothes, now only left a pair of shoes to complete my CNY shopping.
Sounds tiring eh? It is. Preparation for CNY is just a tip of an iceberg of the thing that i don't like for CNY.
I guess you also share the fimiliar dislikes about CNY
Praise the Lord that the weather has been kind to us lately. Remember few weeks back, we were like few inches away from the surface of the sun. I know it is a good gesture to wear new nice clothes on the first day of CNY but the brand new cotton will not have mercy on you.
The word 'fat' has a good connotation for Chinese during Chinese New Year. Fat in Cantonese is "fei", so the auscipuos saying will be 'Kor Fei Nien" - Have a loaded CNY. Likewise, many try to avoid to be fei during CNY, esp me. Really, adding few pounds on the joyous occasion is invitable. Look, nothing is healthy on the dining table during the feast. Fried Nien Gao (Sticky cake), fried chicken, fried arrowhead, tang yuen (glutinous ball) and the list goes on.
The same old questions from relatives
When you're doing visiting, please prepare the answers on the repetative questions that will be forwarded by your relatives on every CNY.
For single: Got boyfriend/girlfriend ah?
Proposed answers: No time, career first / I'm gay / I'm lesbian / My elder brother still hasn't got any girlfriend also / I'm dating with your daughter
For attached: When you plan to get married?
Proposed answers: No time, career first / I'm gay, Malaysia doesn't allow gay marriage / I'm lesbian, Malaysia doesn't allow gay marriage / My elder brother still hasn't married / Your daughter is not ready to get married
For married couples who still don't have offspring: When to get baby? (blatantly ask)
Proposed answers: No time to take care of a child / Man and man cant produce / Girl and girl cant produce/ My elder brother still hasn't any child also / Your daughter is not productive
For married couples who have only on child : When to get another one?
Proposed answers: No time to take care of an another child / My elder brother got one child only, you ask him to get more first / Ask your daughter
The Feng Shui tips
Don't be shy, just admit it. You do browse or take notice on the CNY horoscope, don't you? Me too. I'm really curious what the Feng Shui masters say about my zodiac every year. There is saying in Chinese that goes 'Feng Shui master cheats you for eight or ten years". So no matter how good they say, it will end up in different way eventually, for me. Sometimes, too many sources on the horoscope -some say good and some say otherwise, it's pretty confusing you know. Tell you what, just believe in God.
You know the homecoming trip for Chinese in China is the world largest's migration with over 220 million Chinese taking the train ride during festive period? In Malaysia, though the number is far more lover but it is estimated that the PLUS North South Expressway will be flooded with 1.4 million vehicles!
That's why, every year, going back to my hometown is like never ending journey. The traffic is disastrous! Usually, my journey back to Ipoh is just mere two hours but on the pre -CNY, my record is five hours!
The Protocol in addressing your relatives
My paternal family is huge in Penang, so sometimes i do not have any idea who they are though my mom has always been explaining to me like every year. So i will slow down my pace before saying hi to my relatives and check with my mom how to address them. The worst thing is the kids who supposed i'm related with- since when got little kids one? Where do they come from?
This coming year will be the year of snake. Please don't recall what you did in the previous snake year, it was 12 years ago! The animal zodiac is not cute at all. They serve as a recalling factor on what you did 12 years ago, 24 years ago, perhaps 36 years ago. You know what, you're getting older each and every CNY.
No matter how bad i lament about CNY but this is why CNY is so special. You don't really care be drowning in sweat with your new clothes during visiting because it is a good sign to kick start a brand new year with brand new clothes. You don't really care on how fattening the food on the dining table because calories come second, the joy of sitting down together with family and friends and have a heartwarming meal is priceless. You don't really care on the repetitive questions directed by your relatives because you know they really want to catch up with you since the last met. You don't really care you're aging because one year older is one year wiser and you're more successful than last year. You don't really care how bad the traffic is because you know that your father and mother are waiting for you at home for the reunion dinner.
Let's end my note with one of my favourite childhood CNY songs. P/S Danny Koo is really cute.