Chinese New Year mood is in the air with just 2 more days to go before we roll into the year of the Monkey!
Yesterday hubs and I did our shopping for ‘kam’ (Mandarin oranges) and gifts for the girls’ teachers and his clients. I’ve always loved the atmosphere at shopping malls pre and during CNY. The catchy CNY songs booming away, the myriad display of exciting CNY food stuff, the red decor and all the CNY paraphernalia always set me in a happy mood.
When I was a kid, I’d always looked forward to CNY for it was the only time we were allowed to drink soft drinks (from recycled glass bottles that came in crates in the 1970s through to the 1980s) and stuff ourselves sick with cookies, meat jerky, prawn crackers, salty fried bean curd sticks, homemade lup cheong and candies. My favorite flavors of soft drinks were Fanta Grape and Strawberry. Those days, we were not that health conscious yet. I can’t believe I’d intoxicated my body with these colorful fizzy drinks for decades! Gawd! Anyway, I’ve not touched soft drinks for more than a decade now and they are banned in our household.
On the eve of CNY each year, dad would come home at around 11am and surprise us with a big bag of fire crackers. He would then distribute the fire crackers evenly to my 2 brothers and me. Our fire crackers ration was enough to last us throughout the 15 days of CNY, which we would play with our best friends — the 2 boys named Vincent and Michael who lived next to us. They even share the same surname as us.
On the Eve of CNY, we would make our yearly trip to Cameron Highlands, which is my dad’s hometown. Those days, it would take 3-4 hours using the old roads to reach Cameron Highlands. And poor Roy (my younger brother) and I would be sticking our heads into plastic bags and potties puking all the way! Dad would have to stop the car several times along the snaky winding Cameron roads to wash the potty at waterfalls. Sometimes he would stop his car for us to puke at the hill side. That was the only thing I hated about CNY when I was little — the torturous 3-4 hour road trip up to Camerons, to and fro. Though I love Cameron Highlands, the journey up is still traumatizing for me, up until today!
Yesterday was ‘Lap Chun’ day. Unknown to many (me inclusive), lap chun (beginning of spring) actually marks the start of a new zodiac year. Many Chinese thought that the first day of the lunar calendar records a change of a new Chinese zodiac year, but according to geomancy, the actual day only starts on lap chun. Lap chun usually falls on the fourth or fifth day of February of the Gregorian calendar.
On Lap Chun day, eggs have the ability to stand on their ends. Cass and I tried several times but were unsuccessful. We did not have the patience to keep trying but we told each other that we will try again in future until we succeed!
I googled to find out why we were unsuccessful and according to some people, the eggs must not be refrigerated. Aha, no wonder our egg did not stand!!
The above picture shows how an egg stands on Lup Chun day. We shall try again and I am confident that we will make our eggs stand one day. Watch this space! 😉