my spring festival story
professor ömer sahin ganiyusufoglu takes picture with traditional lion dancing. (courtesy photo)
by ömer sahin ganiyusufoglu
my wife and i have been living in china for 17 years. we have learned that chinese new year is the most important and beautiful time in china. that's why we stay in china every year for chinese new year and don't go back to our home in germany.
like every year, we try to be very active around chinese new year.
before chinese new year, we always go to department stores to see the joy with which the chinese buy gifts, food and drinks for the big meal together with families. we especially notice how happy the children are to receive gifts, and we hear happy chinese songs everywhere. you can see the excitement of the people for the upcoming significant event.
my wife also busies herself during the chinese new year. she buys typical chinese decorations and decorates our home as if it were a chinese home. she bought lanterns with chinese music, so that happy chinese songs sound in our flat all the time.
on the day of chinese new year, we want to fully experience all the celebrations. that's why we have been going to an international hotel in the city for the last few years, where many people celebrate the chinese new year. this year was no exception. this year we again went to an international hotel and experienced many chinese traditions. for example, we were served dumplings on new year's eve.
we were also able to experience the skyscrapers in the city center with their beautiful choreographed illuminations, and took many photos and videos. these were sent to our friends in germany, europe and america, so as to share the happiness of chinese way of celebrating the new year.
on the first day of the spring festival, the hotel organized a dance of the lions. this year we were present during the whole ceremony. following the chinese tradition, the dance started at 10:18 in front of the hotel building. we followed the dance with great interest and also touched the lions, while later getting to know more about the signs of chinese zodiac and the good expectations for the new year.
my wife and i have become very accustomed to the celebrations of the chinese new year. since we will probably return to germany in a few years, we will miss the chinese new year very much. that's why we hope to stay healthy and live in china for many more years to support the country's significant development and to experience the wonderful chinese traditions again and again.
we admire how much the chinese people cherish their traditions, making arduous and long journeys to spend the most important festival with their families and friends. this unprecedented cohesion is a great strength of the chinese people. this cohesion no matter in good times or bad times is an essential source of power and motivation for china's further successes in the coming decades.
we wish china and all chinese a happy, prosperous, successful and peaceful year of the rabbit.
professor ömer sahin ganiyusufoglu is the industrial development consultant at qingdao international academician park.