Year of the Snake

It’s nearly Chinese New Year, that time of year when Taiwanese from all over the world return to their island home to celebrate the most important traditional holiday with their families. The decoration vendors are springing up all over the roadsides and alleys, their booths displaying bright red and gold items of every size and shape. CNY is supposed to mark the end of Winter but this year we’ve really had a super mild season. The sun’s been out for a couple of weeks now, with temperatures ranging from 16 to 23 degrees celsius. Last winter I had no cold-weather clothing and boy, was it cold! This year, I was prepared (hats, scarves, gloves, coats) so yeah, of course we have warm weather!

For the foreigners (and most everyone) CNY means a vacation – 9 days this year (Feb. 8 – 17), by government decree! And, it means food – lots of it – and money and gifts. The atmosphere is festive: my building lobby is all decorated up with red lanterns, lights, and golden snake images, and each floor still has its Christmas decorations out. Our annual Spring party will be held the week after CNY and folks are excited to see what sort of prizes (and cash) they could win.

I’ll be heading to Sri Lanka for 2 weeks to tour the island and learn to cook some Sri Lankan foods. I have my own personal guide/chauffeur: http://www.toursinsrilankabathiya.com/tour1.htm. The weather there is supposed to be HOT (34 degrees C); I’m hoping to come back with, at the very least, a tan and some amazing photos. I also want to shop for gems (spinel, sapphire, and zircon), batik cloth, and spices! My Asian adventure continues…Xin nian kuai le!

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Melisa
    Feb 02, 2013 @ 18:04:20

    Happy Chinese New Year Monica!
    and bon voyage to Sri Lanka …

    Reply

  2. Suzi Kamin
    Feb 03, 2013 @ 22:12:54

    Well – Wow! What more can I say. What fun!! Oh and gems to! Sri Lanka – I can’t wait to see pictures….Wish I was there to go with you. Thinking of you, Suzi

    Reply

  3. Terril Jones
    Feb 11, 2013 @ 08:08:52

    Hi Monika, Happy CNY to you too πŸ™‚ We’re not spending it in Beijing this year but in … Claremont! Daughter has a month off from her new school so we’re taking the annual home holiday early this year. So nice to get away from the pollution of Beijing and back to the fresh air of the Inland Empire, ahem ahem.

    Have a grand time in Sri Lanka and do post photos πŸ™‚

    Terril

    Reply

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