As this year’s Lunar New Year ambassador, I am honored to welcome everyone to Dublin’s Lunar Year of the Rabbit.
This year of the Rabbit is predicted to be full of luck and hope.
In mythology, twelve animals were asked to race. The Rabbit arrived in fourth place, shortly after the Tiger, and beating the powerful Dragon, Snake, and Horse. Those people born in the year of the Rabbit are charming, mischievous, amorous, and exhibit athletic prowess. In short, Rabbits are great craic, which makes them a marvelous animal to start this year.
There are different rituals for Lunar New Year, particular to each country’s culture. One might eat a fish toss, a hot pot, banh chung, dduk, or dumplings. There are varied games, and money that may be circulated in red or white envelopes.
What is the thread that connects Lunar New Year and the countries that celebrate it? For all of us, Lunar New Year is about homecoming. Home is vital. Home is where our parents, uncles and aunts dwell. It is the one time of the year where people can take two weeks off; in the past, it could take you many days to travel back to your family seat.
I am ethnically Chinese, born in the United States and have lived in Ireland for a decade. I have been thrilled to see the Asian communities in Ireland blossom. Home for many of us, is now rooted in this country. We are delighted to embrace our homecoming, on this holiday, here.
Gong xi fa cai!