Chinese New Year: Year of the Sheep

Last thurday, 19th February, was the Chinese New Year of 2015. This year it is the year of the Sheep, the symbol of promise and prosperity. Well, I will drink to that :)

This year I couldn't join in with the celebration as I was still at the Houston airport, awaiting my 6 hours long transit before catching another long (9.5 hours) flight back home. Well, last year was indeed fun though when I celebrated the Chinese New Year with my Chinese friends with LOADS of fireworks! Here are but just a few accounts of the celebration:

The Chinese New Year is a very important time for Chinese folks in honour of their various dities and their ancestors as per the tradition. It is a bit like christmas where all the family members gather around for a feast. It is also considered the important Spring festival in China when they burst crackers, have an amazing display of fireworks, and have loads of live entertainment of dancing and singing. It is determined by the Lunisolar chinese calender falling between 21st January to 20th of February. Folks in and around China have their own different traditions as to how they celebrate it. The festival is traditionally celebrated for 15 whole days with each day signifying different customs. The 2nd day is the actual "beginning of the year" which is also considered the day all the dogs were borned too, so they are given a special treat...

Animal of the year : Sheep or goat

The sheep (or goat) is meant to symbolise promise, prosperity and success. Hmm, well, I could roll with that! The animal is the 8th animal from the 12-year cycle of the chinese zodiac animals in their famous animal wheel. 

Anyway, coming to the celebration in Southampton, every year a grand celebration is hosted at the local church among the chinese folks and whoever wants to join in... There are some art and crafts workshops, lots of red decor, a lot of feasting, taditional dancing, choir singing and all sorts of enjoyment...

Here are some of the moments captured by my friend Prameen:

Picture courtesy: Prameen Chanko