GUNG HEI FAT CHOY!!
I want to be back in Hong Kong, where every year for the 25 years my parents lived there we got caught up in the fabulous celebrations. One year I was even part of the lion dance. We used to get little red shiny envelopes with gold characters on the front and fresh new money inside – Lai See money given by elders to others – MISS THAT!
So in Britain we are preparing for record numbers of Chines for lunar new year, given the easing of the visa situation, but I guess, given the Chinese have less money to spend right now that it won’t bring the prosperity businesses are hoping for. As China’s economy wilts, the growth in tourist spending is slowing even though there are more Chinese tourists. From June, Manchester will offer flights to Beijing, making it the first city outside London to do that, but I wonder if we’ve missed the moment. Our strict visa laws should have been relaxed years ago. Anyway, in the meantime, I’m off to find crispy duck pancakes and sizzling prawns….
This is the Year of the Monkey and it begins on Monday February 8 and lasts until Jan 27th, 2017. My firstborn son is a monkey and all the characteristics below are spot on for him.
Each Chinese New Year is characterised by one of 12 animals which appear in the Chinese zodiac. The Chinese zodiac is divided into 12 blocks (or houses) just like its western counterpart, but with the major difference being that each house has a time-length of one year instead of one month.
A few notes on the Monkey
Principal Qualities:- Intelligence, clear-sightedness, keenness of mind, quick-witted, curious, innovative and mischievous, lively and flexible. In addition, their gentleness and honesty bring them an everlasting love life. Although they were born with enviable skills, they still have several shortcomings, such as an impetuous temper and a tendency to look down upon others.
Weaknesses:– A slight superiority complex and often indulges in a low opinion of others. Can be suspicious, cunning, selfish, arrogant, jealous.
Work: Able, ambitious, gifted in everything
Best role: A “gentleman-thief” (?)
Worst role: No bad roles, can be the best around so long as he wants to be
Money: Rich from time to time, but too spendthrift to remain so for long
Luck: He is the animal most adapted to life on earth
Cannot live without: Movement, discussion, the exchanging of ideas
Adores: Taking care of others
Detests: Feeling excluded, ignored or another’s indifference
Leisure activities: Sociable and likes to circulate
Favourite places: Everywhere, provided life is instances and he is not bored
Plants: Sandalwood and Cedarwood
Professions: Politician, diplomat, ambassador, writer, storyteller, salesman, actor – and thief
Lucky numbers: 1, 7, 8
Famous people born under the monkey sign
Julius Caesar, Leonardo da Vinci, Charles Dickens, Lord Byron, Celine Dion, Tom Hanks, Will Smith, Halle Berry, Christina Aguilera, Diana Ross, Elizabeth Taylor, Alice Walker, Michael Douglas, Owen Wilson, Daniel Craig, Mick Jagger, Bette Davis, Annie Oakley, Eleanor Roosevelt, Cuba Gooding Jr., Gisele Bundchen, Kim Cattrall, Nick Carter, Patricia Arquette, Alyson Stoner, Christina Ricci, Demi Lovato, Miley Cyrus, Nick Jonas, Selena Gomez.