Even as the Christmas and New Year festivities end, Singapore prepares for the next major celebration – the Chinese New Year. It is totally amazing how quickly the decoration on the streets, in department stores and supermarkets transform. All things nativity are gone and we now prepare to welcome the year of the rabbit.
As I look at all the transformation, I cannot help but think of the logistics involved behind them – the planning, the work, the resource allocation – and appreciate my job at UPS more.
One of the things that I enjoy about the Chinese New Year is the different types of food that are unique to the celebrations including my favorite — pineapple tarts. Pineapple tarts are golden in color and represent the welcoming of wealth into the new year.
This year, instead of buying pineapple tarts, I plan to bake them myself from a recipe I found on the Internet. Since I have no experience in baking pineapple tarts, I bought extra ingredients in case I need a couple of tries to ensure they’re edible.
Chinese New Year stretches over a period of 15 days starting with the New Moon on the first day of the lunar New Year and ends on the full moon 15 days later. Starting on the first day of Chinese New Year, receiving red packets containing money symbolizes blessing of good luck, longevity, prosperity and good health. Normally, married adults will give out red packets to their relatives and friends.
Singapore is a multi-racial society. The interesting thing is, during Chinese New Year, people from other cultures such as Malays, Indians and Eurasians also join the Chinese in their celebration. Every year, we will invite our Malay and Indian neighbors to our house and my parents give their children red packets, too!