Year of the Dog: A Special Kind of Chinese New Year

Dear Friends, 新年快乐!

I wish you health, good relationships, and prosperity, in that order. 

If you have supported me through hardship, thank you for that time.

If you have given me advice, thank you.

If you have spared a thought for me, thank you.

And, most of all, forgive me for the mistakes I have made.

I’m probably the last one to greet you, but it’s not really too late, is it?

Believe it or not, I’ve been asleep most of 除夕 (CNY eve) and 初一 (first day of CNY) this year, nursing a bout of vomiting and diarrhea that started in the wee hours of 除夕.

I don’t really know what caused it but I’m guessing a bad combination of coconut water and tom yam soup the day before ? Blame my greedy self for wanting to try everything!

Ominously enough just a few days before I had joked with my friend Yien about how I wanted to lose weight even if it meant losing it painfully.

‘You really wouldn’t want that,’ she said to me, having just lost 3kg from being stressed out.

‘Oh yes, I do!’ I told her.

Well, after losing all the weight I wanted thanks to this sudden ‘purge’, all I have to say is: be careful what you wish for. You might just get it ?

On the good side, this is the first time I’ve lost instead of gained weight during Chinese New Year. Since from what it appears, my appetite isn’t picking back up anytime soon, I’m guessing I’ll continue losing weight all throughout Chinese New Year.

On the bad side though, I’ve been missing out on a lot of things, beginning with the splendid meal my elder sister cooked for our reunion dinner. There were eight dishes in total and all I ate was a third of my bowl of plain white rice and a few pieces of mushroom.

After dinner, I drowned myself in a concoction of pills, pushing me to sleep way before I intended. I slept through the countdown, neighborhood fireworks, and the temple performances, missing out on my favorite dragon dance.

Usually, the first to wake up in my family, I was last this year around, formally waking up at only 1.15pm. The pills had too strong an effect on me since I didn’t take them too often. By the time I woke up, half of 初一 was gone.

Having said that, through the physical pain and inconveniences, this has probably been one of the happiest Chinese New Year in my life.

This year, everyone in my immediate family was home for the reunion dinner. Last year, my dad and my elder sister were away. I even celebrated it with my newly born nephew Caleb, who enjoyed his six months on Earth.

Instead of being stressed out, everyone at home was relaxed. I haven’t been in such a celebratory mood in a long, long time 🙂

From my business perspective, I actually managed to collect 95% of my payments within the last two weeks of Chinese New Year! (Thank you to my clients who paid) From a Chinese superstition point of view, collecting money owed before Chinese New Year is always a good sign 🙂

While I don’t expect every year to be as fantastic as this one, I definitely hope that I can see my parents grow old, my siblings progress and my nephews grow up.

From my business front, I hope my businesses will continue growing and I will continue working hard.

I know not everyone gets to enjoy this moment and I feel truly, truly blessed. One thousand percent.


I feel really blessed to be alive to see and experience this.

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