Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Waii Jao (Chinese New Year)

I love living in the Bay Area, particularly Alameda, where a short car trip away (about 3 miles) you'll find yourself in downtown Chinatown Oakland. Every Sunday Golf goes to his flea market and I'll walk with Aidan in his stroller around Chinatown, a few blocks away. I let him play in the local park where there's a pretend Chinese junk ship for kids. I love having him interact with all the kids and I've even thrown around the idea of having him attend preschool in Chinatown so he'll begin learning Chinese in addition to his Thai and English.

Across the street from the park is a Chinese grocery store where we go often for food. The owners were having a Lion Dance ceremony done with a long string of firecrackers held up on steel rods outside the entrance, a lion dancer, and the big drums and cymbols. We made our purchase just in time and crossed the street to the park again so the firecrackers wouldn't be too noisy for Aidan's tender ears. What a thrill! I love it so much that I live in a part of the country (and city) that such a spectacle can be seen. All around the Chinatown area as we were walking we could see red paper reminents of the firecrackers from many ceremonies that had taken place over the week. I could hear another bunch of firecrackers being lit off a few blocks away and driving on our way home we saw another storefront going through with the ceremony.

Earlier this week Golf paid respect to his ancestors. Mother, Father, Sister and Brother. We laid out a table of food and lit the candles and incense. This is a twice yearly event, plus we do it on the death anniversary of each family member. Golf's heritage is both Thai and Chinese, so we participate in both cultural rituals. Below are a couple pictures from last week's offering. Notice how my baby has grown into a little boy!!!

1 comment:

Mel said...

Happy New Year Aim and fam! mmmwwwaaahhh!