Friday, February 08, 2008
Gong Xi Fa Cai, Hong Bao Na Guo Lai!!!
Check out Sean in Brian's old samfu, a photo-shot made possible only cos I bribed him with a Ferrero Roche.
Day 1 of the Year of the Rat is almost over here in Moscow. Unlike last year, when we had such a blast in London, this year's celebration is a low-key family affair.
This little table decoration is the best that I could do, given limited availability of CNY food and decorative items here in Moscow (plus limited creativity on my part). Look, I even got a pineapple (in Hokkien it's Ong Lai which sounds like Luck Come) and a pomelo (I don't know the significance of pomelo, but I vaguely remember seeing pomelos during CNY). When we made our phone calls home to our families in Malacca and Sabah this morning, I found out from my mum that she bought her pineapple for less than RM2 each; mine was S$16, or RM40!! I would never buy such a pineapple in normal circumstances, but what the hey, it's CNY!
This would be the 4th consecutive CNY that we are spending away from Malaysia :(
Although we are in cold, wintry, Moscow, where there's not a hint of CNY anywhere around, I was adamant about making this an event of some significance for the boys. I bought loads of chocolates and other goodies, and packed the fridge with soft drinks. As a kid, I loved CNY so much and would spend all day drinking bottles and bottles of Sarsi (rootbeer), munching goodies, stuffing my face with mandarin oranges and of course, collecting angpows.
Above is the spread we had for last night's reunion dinner. The menu was wintermelon pork ribs soup, sweet and sour pork ribs, soy sauce chicken and boiled eggs, steamed seabass hongkong style, braised shitake mushrooms with siupakchoy and ginger-garlic oyster sauce prawns. For dessert, we had bird's nest soup. Eddie explained to the boys the significance of reunion dinner and added some c&b story about how the first-born son is expected to help mummy clean up after dinner.
And because Brian had read or heard that the longer children stay up on CNY eve, the longer the lives of their parents, both boys insisted on staying up before succumbing to droopy eyes by 1145pm.
As my parents did all those years ago, I too slipped angpows into their new PJs (bought by my mum when we were in Malaysia) after they've gone off to dreamland, for them to discover with glee in the morning.
Gong Xi Fa Cai Everyone and to Everyone a Happy New Year!