This is about a week late as I was on holiday for the past week, but I thought I’d wish people a happy year of the Rabbit.
I got to experience my very first genuine Chinese New Year this February now that I’m living in Beijing, and I have to say it was one of the most awe-inspiring spectacles I’ve ever experienced. Fireworks stands started springing up all around the city about a week before the turn of the (lunar) year. The fireworks around the city of 20+ million people started to slowly build through the week until turning into an almost constant drone in the background the night of new years eve. Then once midnight actually rolled around, it was just the most unbelievable thing that I had ever seen. Literally, as far as the eye could see, there were fireworks going off. It seemed everyone in the city had gotten their hands on some and were setting them off. Within about 20 minutes, visibility had been cut in half just from the haze created from the gunpowder residue in the air. It was quite a sight of just the pure power of a large native population of people all celebrating at the same time. The crazy thing is… the celebration is still going on as a week later I can still hear the explosions outside my window.[slideshow]