Chinese New Year 2020: Year Of The Rat is a long and important celebration in the Chinese Lunar calendar. It starts on the first day with visiting elderly relatives and ends with the grand lantern festival on the fifteenth day. It falls on different dates every year, between January 21st and February 20th in the Gregorian calendar. And in the Chinese calendar occurs about February 4th, marking the end of winter and beginning of spring.
This New Year is celebrated in many countries and territories with Chinese communities in what we call as the “Chinatowns”. It is a time for family bonding and a time for gratitude.
The Chinese New Year is the century’s old celebration, filled with myths and traditions which reflect on what people believed. The Chinese New Year celebration all over the world is one of the biggest events in a year. Here are some countries that fervently celebrate the Chinese New Year aside from China.
Chinese New Year 2020 Celebrations
Temples in Taiwan are pretty crowded during these times. People come into the temples with incense sticks to pray for good luck. It is believed that the first person to place their sticks into the incense container will be blessed with luck throughout the year. Shopping for New Year’s fare begins early in the day. Vendors start displaying Chun Lian (Spring Couplets) on the streets. A Chun Lian is a temporary Chinese New Year decoration placed on the house entrance. It is written in vertical strips of red paper (red being a very lucky color for the Chinese) with the best calligraphy one can draft.
Malaysians clean their homes and put out decorations in days preceding the New Year. They prepare bountiful food and buy new clothes in preparation of the celebrations. Shops stocked up with golden ornaments and festive decorations in anticipation of brisk sales. People also flock in to flower shops to pick out plants and hope it brings luck for the New Year. Malaysians also make offerings and settle debts. It is also essential to bring Mandarin oranges when visiting friends, believing it brings prosperity and luck. And cherry blossoms can also be given to people planning to get married for wishes of good luck.
A sweet delicacy called “tikoy” made out of sticky rice is common during the Chinese New Year in the Philippines. Giving out tikoys for free is believed to bring good luck both on the giver and receiver. Chinese-Filipinos also decorate blooming and healthy plants around the house, to symbolize life and renewal.
Fireworks also play a big part in opening of Chinese owned stores first thing in the morning of the Chinese New Year. The unwound coils of fire crackers that could start can be strung from the top of a small building are the center of attraction. The loud noise the hundreds of fire crackers make are said to scare away the evil spirits that cause misfortune to a business.
Three major events are held in Singapore during the Chinese New Year – “Singapore River Hongbao”, “Chinatown New Year celebration” and “Chingay Parade of Dreams” where the country displays an example of multi cultural activities.
Chinese Indonesians serve egg skin dumplings resembling gold ingots and glass noodles that resemble silver chains. Lotus leaves are also believed to symbolized having many male offspring, much desired among Chinese families.
In whatever manner the Chinese New Year is celebrated around Asia, everything is united in the sincere hope of happiness and prosperity for friends and family.
This year also known as the Chinese New year 2020 – Year Of The Rat will be celebrated with the same enthusiasm among the Chinese people all around the world.