The Year Of The Dog
Magazine, The Immigrant Experience
Today marks the beginning of the 2018 Chinese New Year a celebration that will run over the course of two weeks. Based on the lunar calendar Chinese New Year has a moving timeline falling typically between January 21 and February 20.
Celebrated worldwide it is a festive time with very beautiful colorful activities, parades, bell ringing, fireworks, family gatherings, big feasts, paying respects to ancestors, and of course gift giving. Chinese children love this season as they receive the traditional red envelopes containing money that is supposed to be “lucky money”.
Each year the Chinese calendar is assigned a zodiac animal to represent that year. This year’s Chinese New Year 2018 animal is the Dog. People born in the Year of the Dog are attributed a dog’s defining characteristic which is loyalty and deemed honest, never abandoning family or friends. Other character traits include seriousness, efficiency and possessing great communication skills. Moving in 12-year cycles the following years pertain to the Dog: 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, and 2018.
A globally celebrated holiday, Chinese New Year is honored by all people of Chinese descent around the world including East and Southeast Asia, Brunei, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, North Korea, Singapore, Vietnam and South Korea.
“Gong hei fat choy” “wishing you great happiness and prosperity” is the typical greeting which is Cantonese spoken in parts of southern China and Hong Kong.