I think this is my 3rd or 4th Lunar New Year (LNY) that I could not be home in Singapore. It is a big deal back in Singapore, and is even bigger than Christmas/Thanksgiving here I think. It is an opportunity to gather with all my extended relatives, catch up and visit everyone. The whole country buzzes with excitement, happy LNY music, and is decked out in red, gold and other “prosperous” colors. We get to put on brand new clothes on the first few days of New Year, and get all dressed up for the visitations around the country. There are red packets (of money) that are given to children and singletons, and lots of delicious Lunar New Year goodies to snack on. Ample pineapple tarts, love letters and what have you, at every single house we visit. I miss it all, and even though it does get tiring running around the place seeing everyone, it’s always fun to hang out with my cousins whom I grew up with, and hear updates from my other relatives.
Since last year, we started a new tradition to chat on Skype with my closest relatives during their reunion dinner at Lunar New Year Eve. S and I get up early (night time over there) and chat with the family.We update everyone on our life here and they tell us about theirs too. It is a precious time together, us being so far away most of the time and essentially leading parallel lives with them. Going forward, we probably will not get many opportunities to go back during LNY because it is usually in the middle of the school year/work year for us. So this Skype tradition might continue over the years!
Here are some photos from our time together. I guess technology does have its perks some days!
On the U.S side, S and I had our own reunion dinner at a local restaurant in town. While the food is drastically different, as you can see, the idea was the same. Here is our spread: We had a huge cajun chicken pizza and a massive platter of seafood pasta.
It will be interesting to see how we create our own LNY traditions over the next few years, and find our own ways to celebrate. It is still LNY now, so here’s wishing everyone a very happy Lunar New Year!! May you have blessings abound in the year to come. 🙂