Chinese New Year is around the corner. For many Chinese people whether from mainland China or overseas, this is definitely the happiest time of the year. Seen as the time for a reunion, celebration and harvest, CNY is a grand festival that many good things happen.
Just like many places in China, Singapore also observes CNY, following a variety of traditional practices: home decoration, New Year food preparation, Spring Couplet, red packet, dragon dance and etc. There is no word to describe how lively the streets are particularly in Chinatown where most Chinese people cluster until you see it in person. The jolliest time of CNY is not the day itself, but one week before that; not the daytime in Chinatown, but when night falls.
2019 is a year of Pig in the Chinese Lunar calendar. Chinatown is decorated with a wide range of colourful lanterns that light up the entire night. Among all the beautiful lanterns, there is a huge one in the middle of the street. That is a group of adorable gold pigs of difference sized which carry a lovely smile welcoming the tourists from over the world. Other lanterns are shaped into ancient coins, symbolizing good fortune in the coming year.
The streets are packed with stalls selling various New Year products, and people who are going for New Year shopping. Actually, it’s just too crowded to move at all and you have to be patient and smart to push way for yourself. Whatever you are interested in, wherever you are from, don’t ever miss out the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum located in the South Bridge road of Chinatown. That is one of the landmarks in Singapore and one of the best architectures too. You will be amazed by its look, especially during the night. When we were there, there was holding a lion dance in front of the temple, bringing up the festival ambience very much.
Under the warm lighting that perfectly depicts its shape and brights up the red appearance, the Temple looks sacred and stately like the mysterious architecture in the famous Japanese animation Spirited Away. It is just too good to be true.
People worship and pray here, hoping a brand new start in the coming year.
Bustling as the streets are, you can still find a quiet corner under the temple. The sea of red lanterns just brings me back to the ancient time. I think of myself as if time travelled while at the same time feel hilarious about the festiveness.
This is a peaceful and lively time. At this moment, I wish everyone seeing this post 恭喜发财，大吉大利 (happy and prosperous)！