Monday 15 February 2021

A Different Chinese New Year

Happy Lunar New Year!

It's always a date I look forward to since young. The excitement begins during reunion dinner when my grandfather used to start the ball rolling by getting all the grandchildren to line up and wish him in return for an Ang Pow. Over the festive period, the exchange of greetings, oranges and Ang Pows continue nosily amid tables of poker cards and mahjong. I really missed those times. Sadly, once grandfather passed away, things had never been the same at the house where my grandmother still lives.

This Covid disrupted year just served up another new experience. No effervescent Loheis, visitations limited to 8 people and general restrictions meant that the mood was mostly subdued. Although one can hear enthusiastic chatters in certain houses, it was typically done behind closed curtains and probably hoping there would be no strange knocks on the door.

The first day seemed to pass slowly. Then news report emerged that a group of 5 guys had sped down a road in the wee hours, crashed into a shophouse and were burnt to a crisp. The drama level increased when one lady tried to extricate the body of her loved one from the wreckage and got herself thoroughly burnt. What a way to start day 2. As information drips came through, a video clip incriminating the silly act of extreme over speeding began circulating. Speculations were rife that the car was modified, the driver was intoxicated, there was a dare to perform etc. Whatever the outcome, I feel pity for the 5 families who will alter their view of Chinese New Year from now on. Hopefully, it's a lesson learnt for many.

This year will be remembered and my biggest wish is peace and stability for all.

Tip: Chateau Giscours 2014, fine minerality with earthy undertones

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