Chinese New Year to me, means a lot of things – from dinner get togethers to seeing random children in the kampung-hood walking up to you with Xin Nian Kuai Le greetings, their hands stretched out for “you know what”. :P And not to forget the massive traffic jam if you leave for your destination during peak times!
But most importantly, Chinese New Year is about family and celebrating the start of a new lunar year; a new animal cycle. This year, it’s the rooster. I’ve spent the past one and a half months working on clients’ CNY campaigns and initiatives, with barely any time to focus on how I would celebrate the festivity this year.
2017 started off really hectic for me – I didn’t have enough time to focus on myself or the blog. Jien and I work at least 15 hours per day and even during weekends just to make sure all timelines are met. In a way, this has made me (him too!) rather uptight and always on edge.
I was also in the midst of relocating my digital marketing agency as well as our home, on top of overseeing the floor plan and renovation proposal for our family home. I only realised how close Chinese New Year was when the kitchen smelt of butter and caramelised pineapple puree, a sign that my mother in-law was making her signature pineapple tarts for guests to savour. And they are really the best I’ve eaten.
The family home was decorated with Chinese New Year ornaments two weeks prior and my in-laws prepped the dining area with more chairs for the reunion dinner. This year, our family friends joined us in celebrating as my in-laws are big believers of the notion, “the more the merrier”. We ate really well as my mother in-law went all out in the kitchen, dishing out family favourites such as kari buah keluak, chicken pongteh, jiu hu char, “chak bek” and otak otak curry. Jien and I brought over some homemade sui kow (he makes a mean one) and yee sang with fresh salmon slices to add to the spread.
Baby Belle was sent for her due service and engine oil change earlier in the week to make sure she’s ready for the road as we went up north to Sitiawan to visit my grandmother on the second day of Chinese New Year. In view of bad traffic, Jien and I left Bangsar at 8am to skip most of the jam. We left Sitiawan around 3pm but suffered horrendous traffic due to the large number of cars on the road as well as the massive downpour. I’m so glad Baby Belle got us home safe, without any issues. :)
I’ve witnessed some pretty bad road accidents in the past few weeks so if you’re always on the road, do pay extra attention as (according to a Feng Shui site) the first half of 2017 will see more people being prone to road accidents. I’ve become quite particular about Feng Shui and luck this year as I had a rather difficult 2016 so I’m not taking any chances!
If you’re travelling outstation during the Chinese New Year period, do remember to service your car at your trusted workshop and get your mechanic to use Shell Helix Ultra for your engine. And remember, do not text or eat or sleep or apply makeup while driving. This is only ideal if you’re the passenger haha! :P
I spent the third day of Chinese New Year catching up with my good friends over lunch and dinner respectively. Looking back at how the first three days of CNY went, we spent a good amount of time with family members. I ended 2016 with a few grievances and am glad I was able to (somewhat) move past them during Chinese New Year because in life, you can’t expect everything and everyone to be perfect (十个指头不一般齐).
Gong Xi Fa Cai everyone! May the Year of the Rooster bring you happiness, good health and wealth. 喜气洋洋 合家欢乐!