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Last Updated: Monday, 26 January, 2004, 15:20 GMT
How are you celebrating the Chinese New Year?

Thursday will mark the first day of the year of the monkey, with the people of China making their final preparations to bring in the Lunar New Year.

Buses and trains are packed with many Chinese heading to their hometowns and airports are full of newly affluent Chinese flying over for the celebrations.

Many will spend New Year's Eve at home with their families eating traditional foods, playing mah-jong and watching the traditional New Year's Eve variety show on state television.

Are you celebrating the Lunar New Year? What will you be doing to bring in the year of the monkey?

If you would like to share your pictures of the celebrations, email them to yourpics@bbc.co.uk

This debate is now closed. Read your comments below.

Your reaction:

I have an adopted daughter from China so I try to celebrate the Chinese New Year every year with her. Last Thursday we went with friends to a Chinese restaurant in North Carolina. We had a Chinese buffet, passed out the red envelopes with money in them for good luck, and had wonderful fellowship. It's a time to think, connect, and enjoy!
Jane Rubino, West End, USA

It's a cold day here, with heavy snowfall predicted, although the weather had little effect on the spirits of people celebrating the New Year in Washington's small but venerable Chinatown. There was an impressive parade with four dragons, costumed monkeys, and fireworks. It was marvellous.
Ruby , Washington, DC

Chinese New Year (Tet) is a great holiday, of course, in Vietnam. We went to temples, churches, visited to our relatives, friends, enjoyed comedy at every night during Tet. This is the time we have for relax after a long, busy, hard working old year. All of us hope this New Year will bring us a year with full of happiness, prosperity, health and all good luck will come to us. I love Tet.
Binh, Saigon, Vietnam

We went down to the beachfront boulevard where there was a huge Chinese Dragon parade and fireworks and all sorts of activities. It was great. However, I will be having pork rather than the traditional chicken lunch...
Victor D., Thailand

I am looking forward to the reunion!
Sharon Goh, Cardiff, UK
I will be flying to Malaysia this Saturday with my English husband to celebrate Chinese New Year with my family in Penang, can't wait to taste the delicious local food again, I wish I could stay longer! I am looking forward to the reunion!
Sharon Goh, Cardiff, UK

I shall go to my favourite Chinese restaurant here in Toronto and order their incredible crispy beef. When done, I shall simply sit back and smile. Kon Hai Fat Choy!
Paul, Toronto, Canada

I plan to open a fortune cookie.
Rex, New York

CNY, I woke up at 5a.m. and went to market with my mum to help her with the CNY eve dinner. We worked whole day preparing food. Next year we will eat out in a restaurant as it is getting more common here now.
Souffle, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

I'm having a dinner party with my friends in Korea Town tonight to celebrate the New Year. Traditionally, Koreans eat rice cake soup which means you are a year older now!
S Lee, Los Angeles, USA

As an overseas Chinese living in Holland, I did feel a little bit bitter, especially in the lunar New Year eve. I know there are many people, I mean the overseas Chinese, and they share the same feeling with me. So, I wish one day all the Chinese in the world can get together in the new year eve, and not one less!
James Zhang, Holland

I made dumplings on New Year's Eve. This is a family tradition. My dumplings are not as tasty as my mothers'. But I managed to complete the task. My wife was very impressed. She is a better cook than I am or ever will be. But she does not know how to make dumplings. I have to go to work on New Years day. There are very few Chinese here in London, Ontario. Not a lot of festivity going on.
Jian Yuchi, London, Canada

Home cooked Chinese food just cannot be beaten
Yao, London, UK
I went out for a NYE meal with my cousin and brother. On Saturday I will be back at my parent's house for a big meal with several families. Home cooked Chinese food just cannot be beaten, especially amongst your friends. Bring on the mooncake!
Yao, London, UK

For reunion dinner I ordered Chinese take-out since there is no time to prepare a meal after a long day at work. I taught my husband (not Chinese) and kids to say 'Kong Hei Fatt Choy'. Would love to go to Canal Street for the parade but the thought of standing in sub zero temperature sends chills to my spine.
Alison Wong, Nesconset, USA

Yesterday my whole team had a big lunch in New York's Chinatown to celebrate Chinese New Year. My boss himself is Chinese so he treated everyone. I felt like I was in China where companies treat employees during Spring Festival. I gave my son $20 so that he will know Chinese New York is good and fun.
Yong Yan, Princeton, USA

Well... I had a Chinese takeaway if that counts...
Paul Mann, Aberystwyth, Wales

Chinese in West Texas are rare but have good restaurants and our friends will all be there for the feasts.
Britt Towery, San Angelo, Texas, USA

Stay in my room alone, trying to connect to CCTV which failed a million times, stressed out because so many essays, don't dare to tell my mum I only had some bread for a whole day yesterday when I really should have be with them having a big family meal...
Jo , UK

I will be celebrating with my Irish colleagues with a meal at the local Malaysian restaurant at lunchtime today. It's not going to be as festive as being in Malaysia with my parents and family but we'll make the best of it. I do regret that I haven't made more of an effort at the festivities for my 2 1/2 year old son and I will miss the old "Lo Sang" with my extended family.
Pamela Yeh, Belfast, Northern Ireland

I'm at work. Just thinking of my family stuffing their faces on my mother's beautiful cooking is enough to make me weep. Ah well, I will at least be meeting good friends tonight for noodles (long life) and we'll cook together on Saturday - when we're all off work!
Lee Tse Yin, London

I'm celebrating this Vietnamese New Year away from family who live in Chicago, IL. This will be my first time not being home for this event. I miss the tradition of exchanging lucky money, the festivity of ringing in the new year, the wearing of new clothes, but most of all, I missed being around my love ones.
Synh Vo, Colorado, USA

The Chinese New Year is named Tet Holiday in my country, Vietnam. On the first day of Tet, Vietnamese in general and Danang people in particular visit the ancestors' tombs buried in the remote areas. Traditionally, they believe and hope that ancestors would bring lucky things to them during the coming year. This is a occasion Vietnamese people visit their relatives.
Nhu Truc Le, Danang City, Vietnam

For the last three years, my non-Chinese wife and I have been throwing Chinese New Year parties. We invite about 40 people, eat, drink, tell stories, and share my culture. For those of you who are homesick, there is no better cure then to invite your non-Chinese friends over, have a few traditional and not-so food, a few drinks, and spread the culture to the 4 seas.
Alan Siu, Baltimore, Maryland, USA

In Korea, the first day of the lunar year is one of the greatest celebrations of the year
Han Gye Soo, Kwangju city. S. Korea
In Korea, the first day of the lunar year is one of the greatest celebrations of the year. All family members are gathering to their parent's house and enjoy food, talk about each other's New Year's resolution. In the morning of the first day of the lunar year, all young people stand in front of their parents (or grand parents) in order to bow. In return, old persons give them "good advice" or small money. In the daytime, family members visit to their ancestral grave and make a bow to their ancestors as a token of thanks.
Han Gye Soo, Kwangju city. S. Korea

My friends and I ate "tikoy" (Chinese sticky cake) while listening to a lecture on Confucius.
Mitzie Icasiano, Manila, Philippines

Calling it the Chinese New Year is incorrect. Lunar New Year would be more accurate. Please bear in mind that the Lunar New Year is celebrated in S. Korea and Vietnam also.
George Mani, Busan, S. Korea

I'm gathering with friends, enjoying homemade Chinese dumplings, chicken stir-fry, and watching a Jackie Chan movie.
Pete, Denver, USA

Being Vietnamese, I too celebrate the Lunar New Year. I am celebrating early in the morning, revising for an A Level ICT Exam. When daylight comes, I shall be doing the ICT exam. In the afternoon, I'm going down the pub for a drink!
Khoa Huynh, Hemel Hempstead, United Kingdom

We are Chinese and will be celebrating New Year working at a take away :-( but also eating lots of good food (that'll make it up). This will be our baby Dylans 2nd Chinese New Year now he'll get spoilt with lots of nice food and Chinese snacks and lots of 'lay si'. So 'Kung hay fat choi'to all.
Linda & Peter Cheung, Leeds, West Yorkshire

My family and I will attend a dragon dance show. However, most of us will stay at home. Foods such as oranges, pineapples, and the well-known "tikoy" will be included in our dinner. No mah-jong at all but Fung Shui will be done to avoid the bad luck throughout the year. It is expected that the house will be rearranged to prevent any misfortunes to enter the household.
Ersa Arriola, Philippines

I am student in UK. These days we have many exams... so no time for celebration. We are going to make dumplings and loads of good food this weekend. Happy new year to everyone and especially those students away from home!
Chen Yun, UK

How am I celebrating?? With a takeaway of course.
John R. Smith, UK

My parents will come over and we'll have a big banquet
Jeff Silverstein and Yu Liu, White Plains, USA
My wife's Chinese and I'm Jewish. We're taking off from work Thursday and Friday. We're going to cook dumplings, sweet and sour fish, deep fried carrot strips, omelette and stir-fried seaweed. We're also going to our local Chinese supermarket to buy some ready-made dishes and sweets. My parents will come over and we'll have a big banquet. We'll have the video camera on our computer so my wife's parents can see us and chat with us so we can celebrate together. In the evening we'll watch a tape of the New Year's Gala from CCTV-4, which is shown on Channel 63. On Sunday we're going to the dragon parade in Chinatown in Manhattan.
Jeff Silverstein and Yu Liu, White Plains, USA

This is the 8th Chinese New Year I am away from my parents in China. The phone line from the UK to China is far too busy but thanks to broadband connection, I can video conference with my family and watch them set off fireworks and cheer together┐
Jinfu Li, London

This is our second Chinese New Year here in the UK with our two young children (both under 3). We've decorated our house with red New Year greetings and lanterns. On New Year's Day we'll be wearing new clothes and the kids will receive red packets. It's hard to get them excited about Chinese New Year as it's so quiet here but we'll be having friends over for dinner on the weekend. Happy Monkey year everyone!
J. Chang, Newbury, UK

A time to reconnect with my heritage and culture
Ron, California, USA
Well, our family will be having traditional Chinese New Year's dinner with "steam boat", wearing red, and of course passing out the red envelopes. Of course, it is certainly tamed and ordered considering the celebrations in Singapore, where my relatives live and where I come from. It also provides myself, the generation raised in the United States a time to reconnect with my heritage and culture.
Ron, California, USA

I'm first generation English, my parents are Chinese, so I don't celebrate the festivities to the extent most do, but I still enjoy the idea of seeing family and stuff. It's like a second Christmas really. Happy New Year!
Cee Wah Chan, Bournemouth, England

I just returned home from Vietnam before the Chinese New Year a couple days ago. I had a chance to see my family members and friends. I also went to the flower market. Unfortunately, I could not extend my trip to attend Chinese New Year in Vietnam. I wish all my family members and friends a happy, luck and joy in the year of Monkey.
Tai Luu, Philadelphia, USA

My step-dad's family makes a TON of dumplings and we all eat until we can't move!
Sarah, Los Angeles, California, USA

I wish everyone good luck and good health this year
Victor, Oxford
Chinese New Year is very important and working here in the UK I missed all the traditional things that I used to do with my family. Most of all the wonderful food that the whole family shared on New Year's eve. I wish everyone good luck and good health this year.
Victor, Oxford

I will be visiting my Chinese friends and eating stir fry.
Michael Stewart, Luton

This is, no doubt, the most homesick time of the year for me and, I believe all overseas Chinese. I wish everyone a happy New Year. I have been listening to the celebration special programmes on Taiwanese radio online. Now, I wish I had bought some fire crackers for later. Happy New Year everybody!
Jake Beanie, Bath, Avon

We have a lot of Chinese people living here in Vancouver, Canada so the festive mood is pretty good. As usual our family will be eating TONS of delicious foods and drinking lots of wine! We will be going to the 'flower market' to buy some lucky flowers for good fortune for the New Year.
Nikki, Vancouver, Canada

This is the sixth year I am spending Chinese New Year alone in the States, as a student. I am a bit depressed, because I love being with my family...I just called them and they were having dinner together, and they will go out to the flower markets tonight! I am so happy for them. As for myself...I rented six movies and I will be watching videos as my way to celebrate!
LML, Hong Kong / USA

I woke up this morning at 7am (Bahamas) to call my family in Singapore. It was great being there virtually during their reunion dinner in Singapore. I felt warmth and joy as I listened to their laughter... This has been my 3rd year away from home and I felt the most homesick today. Going to cheer myself up by having some great Chinese food with non-Chinese friends in Bahamas. Cheers!
Dione Phooi, Bahamas and Singapore

Happy New Year for all the Chinese around the world
Leo Lee, Canterbury
The Chinese New Year is a very special day for us.... especially for the Chinese who is studying in UK..... In here I cannot celebrate the new year with my family as they are in HK....but never mind I will celebrate this special day with my friends here... hope everyone enjoy their new year day whoever people from Hong Kong and China. Happy New Year for all the Chinese around the world.
Leo Lee, Canterbury

I'm in Bangkok on holiday in Thailand. I am just about to get into a Tuk Tuk (Bangkok Taxi!) and head to China town for monkey business with our Chinese friends!
Tim Coster, London

For my Chinese Friends in China and here in the US, "Happy Year of the Monkey." In the US a majority of people, regardless of Religion, send out Holiday Greeting Cards during Christmas and the (January 1st) New Year. It would be a real nice touch if we could all do the same during the Chinese New Year especially in recognition and support of our Chinese friends, wherever they happen to now call home.
John, New Jersey, USA

Eating Moon Cakes and watching Dragon Boat Race!
Alan Chan, HK

I'll have dinner with some close friends, but will not be with family as they are half-way across the world and my work keeps me in London. Might pop into Chinatown for festivities if the weather is not too bad!
CY, London & Kuala Lumpur

I am not Chinese but am aware of the holiday as I have a few friends in the Far East, I will be emailing them to say 'Happy Year of the Monkey' and I will be wearing my jade Ox pendant on Thursday in a sort of celebration of things Chinese (I was born in the year of the Ox)
Liz, Cardiff UK

I am Chinese working in UK. I will spend time with friends tonight. Homesickness is the worst of the whole year at this time. Wish everybody a very happy and successful new year.
Cynthia Yuan, Surrey

Living down south, I will be travelling up North to celebrate with my family. This is always a traditional celebration for us and the Chinese society in Middlesbrough will also be getting together for one big party of fireworks, dragons and traditional Chinese food! Its always a colourful event and I am looking forward to seeing the Chinese New Year in! It sure is an entertaining time.
C, Somerset, UK

It is cold and wet. I understand this is not China but I do want to cheer up.
Bin, Sheffield

Please don't just think of this as the Chinese New Year, it's the Lunar New Year, celebrated by Asians throughout the world. I will be celebrating with my in-laws with traditional Korean breakfast food for the first time in my life! May all people have a wonderful year of the monkey!
Alan Knipmeyer, Seoul, Korea

I'll do my bit by cooking Chinese even more often than usual. Seems the supermarkets have taken note and are stocking up on interesting oriental ingredients!
Andy Millward, UK

On Thursday, I will be cooking a nice Chinese meal for my wife. Unfortunately I cannot take a day off on Thursday, as it is not a holiday here
John Seto, Reading, UK

This is the first Chinese New Year that I would be celebrating it away from home (Singapore) and as a married woman. It is not easy having very few friends here to know that this is Chinese New Year. I felt lonely as there is a lack of festive mood compared to Singapore. However, thanks to my husband, we are going to Chinatown, hoping to absorb any festive mood.

We buy new clothes to wear on the first day of New Year, prepare oranges, wrapping up red packets, cleaning up the house and finally we would finish it of with a reunion dinner this evening. At 4pm this afternoon, we would be making lots of calls to Singapore which will usher in Chinese New Year 8 hours ahead of us. We hope the year of Monkey will bring stability in the political arena, growth for the economy and lots of blessing for everyone of us. Happy New Year.
Christina Spybey, London, UK

Chinese hurry home for New Year
21 Jan 04  |  Asia-Pacific


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