The attached link reviews the Chinese New Year experience and it very similar to my experiences. This article is not absolute but a window into the culture during this time but I will say I have experienced the exact situations. It is a time to spend with your family and that’s why there is a massive migration of people heading home. During my 3 visits during this time is about eating, drinking, gambling, and resolving family disputes. My schedule is like this and happens in most of this area in China, Nanjing. The morning starts with dumplings, and then we will journey to our location for the day (each day will be at a different relatives house rotating from mother side to father side). Then we will be offered sugar water and snacks for all guests arriving. We will give gifts of cigarettes, alcohol, fruit, snacks, and soy milk. At lunch time we will eat lots of great fresh food and drink lots of Baijui but NOT too much because we will be gambling after lunch. The males will sit at one table and the females/kids at a separate table. My wife sits at our table because she needs to translate for me. After lunch the ladies will clean the tables so fast and efficient it is amazing. With the tables cleaned the gambling starts and we play cards. We drink tea and eat more snacks. At dinner there is usually more food and lots more alcohol and it is a game to make sure everyone drinking drinks the same amount. After our amazing meal we will gamble more and others will come and go to different places to gamble. It is a great time just walking around the villages and seeing groups of people gambling and having a great time for the holiday everyone has a smile on their face. We repeat at a different relative’s house each day for 10 days straight.
Again it is all about family and when there are family arguments during the year it is a time to resolve family disputes. Inviting family for a fest during this time is a sign of great respect and I am glad to see my wife’s father and uncle talking again, Happy New Year!
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