The week before CNY

As I was waiting for my yee mien at lunch this afternoon, it occurred to me that it has been a pretty quiet CNY this year. Upon reflection, year 2004's CNY was quiet too. Is something going on?

I remember during the teenage years that the weeks before CNY would be filled with trips to Sungai Wang or Lot 10 or 1 Utama for New Year shopping and gatherings. I would be shopping for new clothes as the New Year demand new "everythings" from clothes to shoes. We would be hunting for the best bargain around town as our pocket money was pretty limited. Shall we go for a carrot-cut pants where the wider the pants the better. Or shall we go for that hip bright coloured shirt? What about hair cuts? Go for the more expensive pro or the student cut at Thomas & Guys? Decisions, decisions and decisions. These two weeks will also see people returning borrowed books and money to each other as it's a taboo to owe anyone anything during the New Year. Old debts must be settled before new ones :P

In the working adult years, pre CNY would be filled with endless requests for "sau kung" (wrapping up of working days) lunches & dinners where we would all perform the lou sang ritual, a ritual involving some weird multi-coloured dish where the higher you mixed the dish with chopsticks, the better luck and wealth you will gain in the coming New Year.

This year I had one gathering among the old boys and that's it.

A few years ago would see me hanging out at ZipD's house for mah jong sessions. It's like every week we would play mah jong up until CNY. This year, ZipD's parents moved out of the house and he has the whole place to himself. In any other circumstances, that would be like a new nirvana for us - we could now hang out and play games, mah jong, whatever to our heart's content without "parental supervision" (in quotes because it's not like the parents are supervising but you know the freedom of not having older folks around to nag). Strange thing is, that's not the case now. Are we all bored of mah jong? Or just so bored that no one feels like doing things at all? Hmmm...

Oh... the older I get, the more I dread CNY... can someone please stop time?


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