新年快乐（xīn nián kuài le).
This is the saying every Chinese are saying around the end of January / beginning of February every single year.
This is my first time celebrating the Chinese New Year, and I am excited.
The Chinese New Year’s, also called the Spring Festival, days lasts 10 days, an it is beginning at 28th of January, 2017.
This is the day, the last day of this year, to get together with all the family member and have a little celebration. But it is so different from western cultures.
First of all, yes, it is not celebrated on the first calendar year, January 1st. It is as well not one that is celebrated on the same day. Furthermore and most importantly, it is something that the family, the extended family celebrates together. Unlike in Western cultures, where the teenagers or most people from 15 to 25 goes out to drink themselves to the dust with their friends. That is called in the chinese culture using and idiom: 酩酊大醉 （mǐng dǐng dà zuì). It is a little nicer, with a meaning: drink like a lord, or drink until one’s death. Idioms are playing an important part in Chinese culture and language, but we will talk about this later on.
Another part of celebrating is giving out lucky money. If you want to have a lucky New Year, you have to get lucky money! It is either big or small amount of money, one thing is important, that it is lucky, and it helps you to make your hopes come true. Another idiom, which wishes you to have your hopes come true: 万事如意 （wàn shì rú yì).
Actually “spring starts” twice in lunar year 2017, according to the traditional Chinese solar calendar, which starts with a period called ‘Start of Spring’, which always begins within two days of February 4. As lunar year 2017, starts on January 28th 2017, and finishes on February 15th 2018, there will be two ‘Start of Spring’s, one on February 3th 2017, and another on February 4th 2018.
To keep the Chinese lunar calendar within half a month of the traditional solar calendar, there will be a leap month in 2017 (a second lunar month 6 starting July 23rd). So there are 13 lunar months instead of 12, which means there are 384 days in Rooster year 2017.
Thank you for reading!
Let us have an awesome Year of the Rooster!