Tuesday, February 12, 2008

More CNY Stuff--Decorations

This is the last post about CNY. Here are some pictures of the traditional decorations that all have special meaning, but I am not sure what they all are. Most public buildings were decorated with cherry blossoms, mandarin/tangerine trees, red lanterns and gold banks. The lobby of our building was very representative.

Most mandarin or tangerine trees are groomed into a columnar shape except for this one on the floor of my office. It is bigger than me and so beautiful.

CNY is all about money; giving it, getting it, wishing for it, etc. The "red pocket" the main focus. It is a small, decorative, red envelope that you fill with money and hand out to people. There are lots of rules about who gets the red pockets and how much money they receive. Any single people, especially children who wish you Happy New Year, get a red pocket. If you are a boss, you should give them to those you manage. We prepared a bunch of red pockets for all the service people in our building: security guards, door men, concierge, etc. Each red pocket should contain HK$20-100 (US$2.25-12.00) depending on how close you are to the person or how helpful they are. It is a pretty good system because you just give money and there is no effort in shopping for gifts. We do not tip the door men in our building even when they carry the groceries. The red pocket is like the year's tips.
There were traditional lion dances all over and this one was in front of our building.

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