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回忆上世纪60年代时的香港春节 (上)
How did my family celebrate Chinese New Year in 1960s? (Part 1 of 2)


 
当你读这篇文章时,我们已经开始欢度中国春节了。在此,请允许我用“恭喜发财”向所有读者致以问候!
 
When you are reading this, we are already into the Chinese New Year celebration period. So, let me greet all the readers with “Gung Hay Fat Choy”!

在农历新年的前15天中,从传统到食物,不同地区的中国人庆祝新年的方式各有不同。本文将分享我1960年代童年时期的春节经历。当时我在香港生活 - 在我离开家人前往加拿大之前。
 
Different geographic regions in China have many variations on the traditions, methods, and foods consumed during the Chinese New Year celebrations covering the first half month of the Lunar New Year. I will now share my experiences from my childhood in the 1960's while living in Hong Kong – the period before I left with my family to come to Canada.


 
我出生在香港一个家规很严的家庭,是四代同堂。这意味着每个角落都有强制执行和遵守的家规。不久前,我的家人被电视节目选为上世纪香港十大最具影响力的家庭之一。

I was born into a very structured family in Hong Kong with four generations living together under the same roof. This means that there are family rules and regulations enforced and followed at every turn. In fact, my family was selected recently as one of the ten most influential families in Hong Kong over the last century by a television program.

除夕前一个星期左右,我的祖母将带领全家所有女性准备新年小吃,用作招待将上门的客人和祭奠祖先。小吃包括油角,芝煎堆,年糕,萝卜糕。成功准备小吃(把面发号)象征着来年的美好和繁荣。 

About a week before New Year's day, my grandmother will lead a team of family females to make New Year snacks for anticipated visitors and offerings to ancestors. The main items are Deep-fried dumplings, Sesame balls, Glutinous Rice cakes, and Turnip cakes. Success in this activity (making the dough rise properly) symbolizes a good and prosperous year ahead.

 
农历十二月二十八日,全家都要里里外外打扫一遍。为了不忘记这一重要工作,人们还编了一句俗语:“年廿八洗邋遢”。当时甚至还有一项政府法令,人们在这一天必须把香港殖民地里的所有建筑物内的公共走廊和楼梯打扫一遍。

On the 28th of December under the Lunar Calendar, cleaning is mandatory around all the dwellings both inside and out. To facilitate this, they created a Cantonese limerick for it - “On the 28 th of December, time to clean up” . Back then, there was even a government decree to sweep and wash all common areas and stairways in all the buildings throughout the colony on that day.

除夕的晚餐是一件大事。所有在家附近工作的家庭成员必须回家吃饭,不得缺席。除夕的晚餐都是精心准备的美味佳肴。每个人都有机会讨论和总结当年的成就,并为来年制定要做的事和目标。

New Year's eve dinner is a big event. All household members working near and far must come home to dinner, no exceptions. The best foods are served in the most elaborate manners. This is a chance for everyone to discuss and summarize this year's achievements and to make resolutions and goals for the coming year.


 
晚饭后,我会穿上新鞋,和亲戚一起去维多利亚公园。那里有专门为庆祝春节而搭建的“临时”夜市。我们会在那里购买鲜花和植物,包括水仙花,兰花,桃花,银柳和盘桔。

After dinner, I put on my new shoes and would go to the “temporary” night markets specially constructed for the New Year at Victoria Park with my relatives. We would buy flowers and plants for display at the house over the New Year period. These included Narcissus水仙花, Gladiolus, Peach blossom branches, Pussy Willow twigs, and Potted Tangerines.

下周六续登。
To be continued next Saturday.

 

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