Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Chinese New Year: The year of the Dragon

Happy New Year! Again?! Yup, although more than 3 weeks have passed by since the largest part of the world celebrated New Year (based on the Christian calendar), enough other religions and cultures celebrate New Year a complete different date (i.e. according to the Buddhist calendar, it’s already 2055!) Last Sunday, it was China’s turn. The year of the Dragon that follows the Rabbit has started and has been a massive celebration, at various places in the world. It is said that the Dragon brings prosperity, being a symbol for good fortune and great power.

For the Chinese, celebrating New Year means a long period full of festivities with friends and family. It is one of the few periods that the Chinese have some days off; public transport is packed as everyone travels through their huge country to spend the new year together with family. This results in the largest annual human migration in the world. Given the fact that there is quite a few Chinese students in Salamanca, the year of the Dragon has been celebrated here as well. Sunday night became an evening full of delicacies, where traditional Chinese courses such as dumplings were presented next to the western pancakes and pasta. Preparing dumplings (cooked ball of dough filled with minced meat and cabbage) is quite an art itself. It’s possible to create different shapes with symbolic meanings – but only if you got the right skills… Well, it tastes the same anyways J Talented or not, the empty plates at the end of the evening speaks to its success. A new and interesting experience of once again, a new year.

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