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A dog came to us

16 February according to the lunar calendar will come the year of the Yellow Earth Dog

A dog came to us
Photo: Mikhail Karpechenko, Evgeny Goncharov
Chunjie is the most favorite holiday of the Chinese people. In translation into Russian it is the Spring Festival. In astronomical terms this is the first day of the lunar calendar. Chinese New Year is celebrated for two weeks.

A month before the New Year's holiday on the streets of Chinese cities appear its harbingers - temporary pavilions from asbestos-cement panels. They sell pyrotechnics. But not every year and not in every city. It all depends on whether the city authorities will allow New Year salutes and fireworks. Once in no time, but more often allowed than prohibited. The Chinese love this thing.

Another sign of an early New Year's holiday is a rush demand in supermarkets. Beer and cola, meat and fish, vegetables and fruits are stored for future use, as if announced the introduction of grocery cards.  

In the clothing markets, too, crowds of buyers. There are pre-holiday discounts - all the accumulated non-liquid goods are sold cheaply for a year.

The Chinese must necessarily buy New Year paired pictures with the wishes of happiness, health and wealth, to glue them on the door of his home. These red pictures are not removed until next year.

If you have business partners in China, forget about them for this time. Every year I hear from my Chinese friends the same thing: "This time we will rest only one week. We must work, we must make money. "" They lie, and they know that they are lying.

Wherever a Chinaman lives, wherever he is, a New Year's Eve he must spend in the parental home. And if it's a married couple, first visit the parents of the husband, and then the parents of the wife. Migrant workers and students go home.

Almost half a billion Chinese people break away and go to their homes. Therefore, a week before the holiday in the country, the transport crisis begins, which is increasing every day and reaching its peak on the eve of the New Year. Kilometer queues to the ticket offices of airports, bus stations and railway stations. Hundreds of additional flights do not solve the problem of transport collapse. The annual great all-China moving!

That's where the expanse of train station thieves. Some collective farmer puts a suitcase, a bag, a knot on the X-ray tape. Then he runs to the other side to pick up his luggage. And he sees that his suitcase has already been attached to his feet. Search-fistulas now. A pocket thief in the train station is like a pike in a pond with crucian carp. And in the city the criminal element does not sit on the stove. The thief feeds the New Year's Eve for a year.

Do not show your cash when calculating at the checkout in the store, avoid crowds, do not walk through the dark streets - God protects the treasured.

I do not wish you, a foreigner, these days to be somewhere on the road in China! Sleep over to you on the reinforced concrete floor of the airport or railway station, lining the newspaper "People's Daily," and stand in line with the titan to collect boiling water for freeze-dried noodles.   

Well, we arrived with grief in half. At home they waited and prepared for the meeting-they killed the hog-house, smoked them, smoked them.

By the new year the Chinese was supposed to change into everything new - they all give clothes and shoes to each other. Children mum - a thread of pearls, a silk handkerchief, the daddy - the block of expensive cigarettes, sandalovye rosary. Brother or sister - iPhone. Parents give the children red envelopes of hunbao with money.

In the New Year's Eve the whole family is making dumplings - the main festive dish. Several dumplings are made with a filling with a value. If you get a dumpling with candy, the whole year will be sweet, with a piece of salted vegetable - salt, with a slice of sour vegetable - sour, with bitter pepper - bitterly, with charcoal - black will be a year. But the coal gleams through the thin dough, and nobody will take this dumpling - and it will remain in the big cup.

On the New Year's table must be a dish of fish. Once the Chinese fish was very expensive, ate it only on the big holidays. The image of a fish is a symbol of prosperity in the house. Now in China, there are many fish, sea and river. And frozen fish, like ours, in China is not for sale - only fresh or alive. But the fish is still more expensive than pork and beef meat.

By the way, is it possible at the year of the Dog meeting there is a dish of dog meat? I asked Chinese people from their acquaintances, they say that it is possible. And in RuNet it is written that it is impossible. And who to believe? However, in Russia we still will not be served roast from a dog with bamboo shoots.

And in general, I get the impression that the Chinese themselves do not know such subtleties, why in 2018 year there comes the "yellow" and "earthen" dog. The most common answer you will hear is: "So it is written in the calendar". And with this you can not argue.

On the wall hung photos of deceased relatives. If the ancestors do not have photos left, write their names on strips of paper. All of them are invisibly present in the feast - they are congratulated, they raise glasses of beer and vodka in their honor.

At midnight, everyone goes out into the street and fireworks are launched, and firecrackers are blown up. The louder the crack, the farther away the evil spirits flee from the house.   

The next day, walking around the guests begins. Since the Chinese have developed family ties, all cousins, cousins ​​and further along the descending line should be visited. Accordingly, and accept all. There are enough products, if only the pancreas does not disappoint.

Not everyone has parents in the village.

In Beijing, I watched with interest my neighbors on the floor - a married couple. Before the holiday, the husband came with a worker from a neighboring supermarket, who brought him a large cart loaded with products, half of which consisted of semi-finished products for quick preparation. A week after the New Year's Eve, the door of their apartment was half-open. The guests walked, walked, walked. It was clear how from the kitchen to the table and back the wife is rushing. That's where she used the ready-made duck in Beijing in vacuum packing.

In the middle of the yard was a round platform. Two weeks there they undermined all kinds of pyrotechnics. And not children, but adult uncles. Since I lived on the twelfth floor, the salutes exploded just in front of my window. I listened to this cannonade, plugging my ears with cotton and hiding my head under the pillow.

Pyrotechnics are expensive. If the Chinese did not pay this money to fire and smoke, and contributed to the national piggy bank, then for the five-year plan, probably, would be collected for the construction of an aircraft carrier.

Instead of our New Year tree, the Chinese have a dwarf mandarin tree. These trees in tubs are grown in special nurseries, and guess so that by the new year they bear fruit - this is the "Christmas tree". I also bought such a tree. Mandarins on it are sour to the attention of the jaws and are not suitable for food. 

On the 15th day of the first lunar month, Yuanxiaojie, or Lantern Festival, is celebrated. This is where the New Year celebrations end. Finally celebrated. And now - to work, work and work. Often seven days a week, 12 hours a day. Saving on everything - saving money for the next Spring Festival.
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