Yuan Xiao Jie & Lantern Festival

Chap Goh Mei- the Chap called Gourmet

Yuan Xiao Jie, Lantern Festival and Chap Goh Mei all mean and amount to the same thing. Essentially, it has now come to the  fifteenth & final day of the Chinese New Year (Feb 17 for the year of 2011) celebrations. And that’s where the phrase ‘Chap Goh Mei’ comes in useful, if you happen to be in Malaysia. In the Chinese Hokkien dialect, CGM simply means the fifteenth night of the new year and it applies, in the strictest sense, only to the countries of Singapore and Malaysia. No other place I know of uses such a subtle and enigmatic phrase. What does that tell you? Quite simply, it means there are a large number of Hokkien people residing in these two areas. It could also mean that the Hokkiens from China were the earliest migratory Chinese (as in birds) to this part of the world. To throw you another puzzle  to ponder on. In Penang, where the majority of Chinese are of the Hokkien lineage, the day is also regarded as the Lovers’ Day (Valentine’s Day).

Happy Yuan Xiao Jie

Happy Yuan Xiao Jie- Fortune Comes Abundantly ©

As this is the year of the Bugs Bunny, it’s only fitting that we include a picture of the cute bunny. This one was taken at a lion dance event given by the ‘Kepayan Lion Dance troupe’. The Kepayan Lion Dance troupe is the only group I know of that has an annual animal mascot related to the animal sign of each of the year. Last year they had the tiger dance. A bit late in the day to show you the tiger picture, now that the Tiger year is gone.

Year of the Rabbit ©

As you well know, on the eve of Chinese New Year day, there would be a family reunion dinner where everyone gorges themselves with gastronomic delights. Well, the same applies to Yuan Xiao Jie. Now everyone will gobble down every last bit of the food delights before heading back to bed and starts the grind the very next day. Ahhhhhhh….. every good thing in life has to come to an end, somehow. To put you in a celebratory mood for tonight. Here’s the dancing fountain from Perdana Park in Kota Kinabalu that you have been hearing so much about lately. More on this later on.

Click to enlarge.

Dancing Fountain from Perdana Park ©

Yap, it’s back to the grind from mid-night tonight. 2012 will be coming up sooner than you think. Time does fly.

Happy Chap Goh Mei! from the chap called gourmet.

You still didn’t get the joke, did you?

Images: All Rights Reserved

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