Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Sunday, Feb. 6, 2011

    We only worked 2 days this past week because of Chinese New Year.  This is a big holiday here, well, the biggest for the year.  Some people get 2 weeks off work, most students get a whole month off, and the temple was closed from Wed. Feb. 2-4.  Since Tuesday, Feb. 1 was our prep day, we had a total of 5 days off.  But time comes, and time's all a blur now!

    We did do a few things, but the humongous crowd attending the festivities were so amazing and overwhelming that we were glad that we stayed home most of the time.  We went to the parade at Tsim Sha Tsui Thursday night and fireworks on Friday at the harbor. 

    Chinese New Year begins according to the Chinese calendar which consists of both Gregorian and lunar-solar calendar systems. Because the track of the new moon changes from year to year, Chinese New Year can begin anytime between late January and mid-February. Below is a chart that shows the beginning day of Chinese New Year and the animal sign for that year.

Year Chinese New Year Begins Animal Sign
2007 February 18 Pig
2008 February 7 Rat
2009 January 26 Ox
2010 February 14 Tiger
2011 February 3 Rabbit
2012 January 23 Dragon
2013 February 10 Snake
2014 January 31 Horse
2015 February 19 Sheep
2016 February 8 Monkey
2017 January 28 Rooster
2018 February 16 Dog
2019 February 5 Pig posted some pictures that described well what it's been like since the New Year Rush started later part of January.

    There is still traditions of having the New Year's Eve Family dinner.  Children still look forward to visiting family and friends and received the red envelop full of money.  Daughters still go home to the parents on the 2nd day of the New Year and received warm welcomes from her parents, siblings and old friends.  Of course, the tradition includes lots of food.  I wonder who would cook all the food?  One of my friends from the temple went to mainland China for 3 days to celebrate the New Year with the in-laws.  She said while she enjoyed the country side and visited her in-laws, she was really glad to be home.  The parents were getting old, so she was the one to buy and cook all the food.  She was so exhausted from her trip that she was happy to be back to the temple working on Saturday.

     Saturday was a great day at the temple since we had a full house all day.  The Spirit was strong and we were all edified.

     We met a few new people at Church Sunday.  President Dai, the former Hong Kong Temple President and his wife came to visit.  Their son and his family live in Hong Kong.  Came to find out that Sister Dai is from Tainan, my home town.  Small world!  Sister Tong, the young lady who buys me cough medicine many times, was there with her sister from Sichuan.  It was so sweet to hear their stories of coming to Hong Kong to do temple work.  I know the Mongolian members took 68 hours of riding in the train to come.  But most of the Chinese members fly and the cost is quite high.  They sacrifice much to come to the temple.  What good examples they set for us!

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