Today is New Year’s Day of our Chinese friends. Officially, we are in the Year of the Horse and the Year of the Snake is over.
While it would have been a treat to be in the midst of the noise and the Chinese New Year festivities, I wish to write about my own New Year celebration away from my loved ones.
Well, 2014 is the 6th New Year I was away from home but was able to spend Christmas in foreign lands two times in those six years.
Though I try to replicate the traditions and the fun of celebrating with loved ones, I knew it will never be the same. Year after year, I would prepare for New Year the way it has always been in the family. I made sure to have polka dot clothes, this New Year I wore a blouse I bought from Manila.
I would try to have as much round fruits of the 13 that’s “required” to be served in the table. This year, with the kind-hearted DFAC (dining facility) personnel and my local friend (who I’ve been requesting to buy for me since 2010), I was able to complete the 13 round fruits. I was so happy, because in this part of the world, this could be considered an achievement. No joke…
So this is my humble New Year goodie table. I displayed my 13 round fruits and round food such as my Maltesers, Oreo, Skittles, round cookies, Reese’s, etc., along with my gift from my boss and few chocolate bars.
Before the clock struck 12:00 to signal the coming of 2014, I made sure I had my polka dot blouse on and coins and bills in my pockets. I had all my windows, doors and lights open (it’s not as if I have a lot of them in my small room).
As my own personal superstition for New Year, I carry with me my passport too (to attract more travels, but this is just me!). I placed small stuff from my loved ones in my pockets (to have them with me for the entire year, again this is just me).
As soon as it’s 12:00, I was jumping and quietly greeting myself and my loved ones a happy New Year. Jumping. Another superstition for those who wish to grow taller. I know I wouldn’t anymore, but I just carried that tradition with me until now. After about 2 minutes, everything was quiet. I closed the doors and windows and unused lights. I changed into my PJ’s. The New Year fanfare is finished.
A silent prayer was offered for a year that I survived and a new one coming.
New Year celebration is not about the firecrackers or the media noche spread at the table. While I wished I was not alone and somewhere else, the show must go on.
New Years mark a new beginning and a closure of the past. It is a celebration of survival. For though the world is harsh and life may be tough, you were able to get by. A stronger and better YOU is born. New surprises and challenges are up ahead, but everything has prepared you for what tomorrow will bring.
From my humble little room in this part of the world, I wish you a belated Happy New Year, hope all has been well since, and a Prosperous Year of the Horse ahead. Cheers to another year of living and loving!