A brand new beginning

A brand new beginning

The expatriates in the City got together to celebrate the Chinese New Year at Yauatcha, located on MG Road, recently.

It was an evening to remember as families and friends bonded over authentic Cantonese food, which included varieties of dim-sums, hargau, classic steamed prawns dumpling and crispy prawn cheung fun among other dishes. Dressed in the traditional attire, the expatriates re-created the festive spirit and welcomed the Year of the Horse. 

Angele, who is married to a Chinese, came for the celebrations with her family. The family, which had moved from France recently, was eager to celebrate it’s first New Year in the City. 

“It is not just Chinese friends that we are meeting. Since we have made a lot of new friends over here, we also met with them. That’s the custom for the first day of the New Year,” explained Angele.

“We’ve also connected with our friends back home through Skype. We’ve tried to re-create the festivities right here as far as possible,” he said.  Liana, a student of Canadian International School who was enjoying herself at the get-together said, “It’s such fun out here that I’m hardly missing the celebrations back home. For us, it’s very important to have a good beginning.” 

For Mark and Nancy from Holland, it was the first time that they were being part of such a celebration.  “We enjoy Asian food, which is why we’re here. It’s nice to be part of the celebrations,” they said. 

Taini Temahora Neumann from Australia, who is in the City for two months, said, “Since my grandmother is Chinese, I know a couple of the customs. But we include them in our Christmas celebrations. For instance, the money which is exchanged in red packets during New Year is done during Christmas in our household.”

Pointing out the increasing number of Chinese nationals in the City, Ema Trinidad, founder of ExpatLife India, who organised the evening said, “While there are many celebrations for those from other countries, noticing the growing number of Chinese nationals, I thought that this would be a great occasion for them to come together. The foreigners here are homesick and enjoy such celebrations.”

Explaining that many of the expatriates have worked in China and are familiar with the customs, Ema added, “The New Year is not only celebrated by Chinese, but also by Singaporeans, Malaysians and Vietnamese. Since many of them went back home in December for the holidays, this is the first time that they are getting together this year.” 

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