I'm on leave today but it doesn't mean that I'm having it easy. Indeed, it has been a very busy day.
But I'm back in the house tonight to observe the coming of Spring. Yes, it's Li Chun time again, the observance of Spring by Chinese all over the world although I doubt there will be anything cheerful about this festival in many parts of China this year, seeing that that country is gripped helpless in the midst of a snow storm. Spring? It's like the deepest depth of winter. The worst in five decades, that's what the media is reporting.
According to the Chinese almanac, Li Chun was supposed to commence at 7.02pm. Many Chinese considers this occasion as the start of the real Chinese New Year, the day coming exactly 44 days after marking the Winter Solstice on 22 Dec 2007. Anyway, at 7.05pm this evening, my aunt stuck the word Hock on the side of our rice urn. It's meant to signify abundance for the whole year.
My wife, who is an on-off-on follower of fengshui, decided to keep some fish in the eastern sector of the house. We went to my brother-in-law's house last night to collect some peacock fish. I dutifully released them into their new home at 7.10pm.
So that's Li Chun for us this year. Short and sweet. Nothing much to celebrate. Just a Chinese cultural belief.
PS. Chinese New Year's just three days away. Strange that I'm looking forward to it but it's for one very good reason: my daughter is coming back tomorrow from Kuala Lumpur. Good reason enough?