Heather Hapeta lives in Aotearoa-New Zealand: real travel, real adventures, real stories, real photos. Recent destinations Vietnam, Cambodia, Taiwan and Hong Kong – now NZ destinations due to COVID travel restrictions
It’s not long until the Chinese New Year (28th January 2017) will be celebrated – this year it’s the year of the rooster. I am a rooster.
And, oh no! I have just found out that when it’s the year of your Chinese birth zodiac sign it’s never a good year for you. That fortune in all aspects of your (my) life will not be very good and therefore, we roosters should be careful during 2017 – it’s a fire rooster year.
Apparently 1945 was a wood rooster so maybe I’m safe from a bad year. Also, just so you know a wood rooster is ‘energetic, overconfident, tender and unstable’ I of course, couldn’t comment!
It seems to bring myself good luck in this zodiac year of my birth I need to wear red so will check my wardrobe – I don’t think I have a lot of red although my winter coat is full-length and red, so covers me completely so I’m ok for winter
Red of course is one of the luckiest colours in Chinese culture, standing for prosperity, loyalty, success, and happiness. Apparently, it can also drive away bad luck and evil spirits.
Research tells me I can wear red belts, socks, shoes, or other red clothes. Apparently red underwear is highly recommended but another ‘rule’ that we roosters need to pay attention to, or the red won’t ward off bad luck, is I cannot buy red underwear for myself.
Now you know what I need for gifts this year!
One good thing, as well as wearing red, I also need to wear Jade accessories– so will be wearing more pounamu (NZ Greenstone/Jade) and that’s easy for me.
However, it gets even more complicated, it also seems I need to adjust my furniture and dwellings to face east “to get Tai Sui behind them”.
All I can say is crikey, Gong Xi Fa Cai, Gong Hey Fat Choy and 新年快乐
The Dunedin Chinese Gardens were high on my ‘to-do’ list and I suggest you put them on yours too. Along with the Scottish settlers, the Chinese have been in the Otago region since 1863 (incidentally, the same year my mother’s family arrived on Banks Peninsula, from Cornwall.)
This Chinese Scholar-garden, Lan Yuan, is tucked in beside railway tracks and the Toitu OtagoEarly Settlers Museum in the city centre – on the corner of Rattray & Cumberland Streets. It’s the only authentic Chinese garden in New Zealand and in fact is the first in the Southern Hemisphere and one of less than half a dozen outside China which surprised me.
Despite being in the city, it is an amazingly peaceful and quiet place and I know when I’m back in Otago I will revisit this wonderful garden.
Look at the photos and I know you too will love them.