This world is populated by a variety of races that come from different cultures and different backgrounds. These people differ in many ways. Do you know Chinese in all over the world have something in common? It is the Chinese New Year! Chinese New Year is the most important festival in Chinese culture and it is celebrated once every year. They do not have a specify date for Chinese New Year because the date is set by traditional calendar that was invented in China long time ago. A day before Chinese New Year or known as Chinese New Year eve, family members who is working out of state will go back to their hometown to have a family gathering and a special dinner will be served. There is fifteen days of celebration in the Chinese New Year and each day carries a different meaning. For example, for the first day of Lunar New Year, it is the welcoming of gods from the heaven and earth. According to the elderly, the family members will gain protection from this goddess by worshipping them. Many Chinese will abstain from meat because they believe that this will ensure long and happy lives for them.
Most of the western people do not have a deep understanding of what Chinese New Year is all about. Further more, this is not a common festival that they is celebrated. As a result, it creates a big difference of the surroundings for Chinese New Year. The purpose of writing this research paper is to compare the ways international Chinese students celebrate Chinese New Year in United States of America.
I have been in America for 15 months; this is my second year celebrating my Chinese New Year in the states. Since I have been here, I have never enjoyed the Chinese New Year anymore. Things were different here. I still have to attend classes, do my assignments and I do not receive any “Ang Pow.” Ang Pow is a small envelope in red color that contains some money given by married people. I felt frustrated during Chinese New Year. I missed the holidays that I used to have back in Malaysia, I missed the “Ang Paos” that provide me fortune, and I also missed my family and friends in Malaysia.
Compared to last year, I felt better this year. When I first arrived United States, I knew only a few Malaysians. I celebrated this major festival with only a friend. We bought some beers, had a long conversation about our history in how we had celebrated New Year for the past few years. At that particular time, I had the urge of going back to my sweet home that is at the other side of the globe just to get a loving hug from my parents. Being here in a western country, I could not feel the Chinese New Year’s surroundings, I felt sad and homesick. I called my family in Malaysia, hoping to get a warm greeting from my beloved one.
This year, I went to a party that was held on February 9th, which was two days before Chinese New Year at my friend’s apartment. It was a gathering for all the Malaysians as a celebration for Chinese New Year. We had decorated the...