A very multicultural group of poetry loving revelers shared food and drink at Library Square Pub on Chinese New Year's Day. Two international students from Brasil joined us along with Karen, a man from Iran, 5th generation Vancouverite Todd Wong, born in Scotland June Ventners-Clark, Peter Clark, Phoenix and Sherry Shigasu.
After the World Poetry Gung Haggis Fat Choy Gala at the Vancouver Public Library, some of us went to the Library Square Pub. Monday night appetizers were 2 for 1. We had nachos, spring rolls, popcorn shrimp and chicken wings. Our multicultural crowd counted ancestry from around the world: Brazil, China, Japan, Scotland, Iran, Germany, India and more!
There are many similarities between Chinese New Year's Eve and Scottish Hogmanay:
1) Make lots of noise. Chinese light firecrackers to create loud noises to scare away bad spirits. Scottish also create loud noise by clanking kitchen pots and setting off cannons and church bells. Doors are opened to let out bad spirits.
2) Pay off your debts.
Chinese like to ensure that you start off the New Year with no debts
hanging onto your personal feng shui. I think the Scots do the
same but especially to ensure that they aren't paying anymore interest.
3) Have lots of good food and visit friends. Eat lots and be merry. Both Scots and Chinese enjoy eating, hosting their friends and visiting their friends. If you spend all your time visiting friends, then you don't have to cook for anybody. But good guests always bring good gifts too!
4) Party on dude! In
Asia, Chinese New Year celebrations will go on for days, lasting up to
a week! Sort of like Boxing week sales in Canada. In
Scotland, the Scots are proud partyers and are well known for making
parties last for days on end.