Chinese New Year '07

>> Thursday, February 22, 2007

Well, boy am I late? Chinese New Year started the past Sunday and now I'm just getting around it. I'm getting quite sentimental about it and it's about the first year that I really miss home (meaning Hong Kong) and I don't really know why. I'm getting old, I guess. So I went out to Chinatown by myself. Principe has to work, DC went to Australia with his family and I really don't feel like contacting anybody else. I wanted a lavish banquet, or dim sum, but those are activities that you need a lot of people to go along with you. So I ended up in a HK style BBQ restaurant, ordered a bowl of wontons and a roast pig and BBQ pork with rice. I haven't have roast pig for a while, thought it would be festive.

Chinatown was full of people, foreigners mostly. They buy all kinds of firework in the stores and just light them up in the middle of the streets. I was surprised of how busy Chinatown is during Chinese New Year. When I first come to this city, all the stores and restaurants close during the first few days, just like when I was in Hong Kong. For us, it is like Christmas; We celebrates from home but everything is supposed to be closed, it's a time for us all to rest. Now even the barbershops are open, which is a big no-no. I guess everyone is getting commercialized and money-driven.

I bought a phone card to call home. They never work around the first few days of new year. I must have dialed around 40 times for it to go through and my little brat of a cousin hanged me up. Why is he even answering the phone? The boy is like 5 years old. Til this day, I still didn't get in touch with some of my aunts. God knows what they'll think about me now. "He called his grandma, but didn't call us... I guess he's too important for us now..." My grandma already told me that one of my uncle-in-laws ask why I haven't called her as early as I had, implying that I either forgot about my grandma or not love her enough... Oh well...

I was obsessing about the fact that I didn't get to have a full Chinese New Year meal, so I dragged Principe out Tuesday night to a restaurant and ordered shark-fin soup, peking duck, beef stew and craw meat with pea shoots. I would have loved to have some lobsters, but it was too much food. And I had some sweet and sour chicken leftovers that I made at home, so I tried my best to control myself. When I was eating the soup, I was thinking of why our people eat shark fins at all. Surely it doesn't taste, with the technology we have now they could make it could have been plastic or some kind of noodles, people wouldn't be able to tell and I doubt that it has any kind of nutritional value. (ES told me that it has a high mercury content, you may get mercutry poisoning if you eat a large quantity of it) But all in all, I was happy that I did something for Chinese New Year and have tons of leftovers that I won't have to cook for a week.

But then, it is still not the same as being in Hong Kong and be surrounded by friends and family...

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