How to tame your (Year of the) Dragon

Gong Xi Fa Cai (Happy New Chinese New Year)!

Yes, it’s that time again in our household, the place is spotless, inside and out, and chinese red packets hang from every garden tree or bush. The kids are excited about it, wife and mother in law are cooking up a storm, and I’m looking forward to Reunion Dinner tonight. For in Chinese households (ours is not really a Chinese household, but we like to follow the tradition of my wife’s cultural background), you head off to the head of the household for what is the most important meal of the year. A bit like Christmas day turkey with all the trimmings is for me. In our case, the Chinese head of the household comes to us, and she cooks the meal too. Result!

You are not allowed to clean on New Year’s Day (tomorrow) as this sweeps away all the good luck and prosperity of the coming year. Hence the frantic cleaning that has gone on over the past day or so. Even our cars have been given the treatment (inside and out), and the poor spiders who’ve been busy weaving away all year unfettered have had their web homes summarily swept away in a swirl of cruel brush strokes.

And this year, the year is auspicious – the Year of the Dragon. I’m a Rabbit (easy going, friendly apparently? no you shut up), but the Dragon is sought after. Much birthing of babies this year, so as to have little Dragons in the future. Not in our household I hasten to add, but around the Chinese globe no doubt.

So for all my Chinese friends, may you have happy, safe and prosperous New Year, and may the little Dragons grow up to be nice Dragons, because I have met enough annoying little Dragons to last me a lifetime. Now please excuse me as I have to prepare myself for tonight’s feast of epic proportions.

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