Thursday, January 26, 2017

Racing Home For The Year of The Rooster

By Asia Pop Culture


The Lunar New Year falls on Jan. 27 in 2017.  So just as we are writing this post right now, it is already Chinese New Year's Day in China and Taiwan (The two regions are 14 hours ahead of U.S. Central Time Zone).

Lunar New Year is the most important holiday in the Chinese calendar, which also triggers the largest migration of human beings in the world. Spring Festival travel rush started on Jan. 13 to Feb. 21 this year when people return home for family reunion and then travel back to cities they currently work and live.  Big cities like Beijing and Shanghai become ghost towns as Chinese New Year approaches.

Xinhua reports 2.98 billion trips are expected during the 40-day Lunar period, including more than 2.5 billion road journeys. The demand for tickets on public transport is so fierce some people spend days trying to get a seat for the annual migration.



Photo from Jan. 25 at Shanghai Hongqiao Railway Station, Source: Shanghaiist.com 



From Jan. 28, Spring Festival celebrations will continue for around two weeks to welcome in the year of the rooster.

According to Chinese astrology, 2017 is a Fire Rooster Year, so those born in 2017 are Fire Roosters. The last Fire Rooster Year was 1957. Famous Roosters include Beyoncé, Bob Marley, Jennifer Lopez, Britney Spears and Jennifer Aniston and famous Fire Roosters include Stephen Fry, Steve Buscemi and Hans Zimmer.

According to Chinese astrology, roosters tend to enjoy social events and being in the center of attention, and enjoy sports.  However, 2017 is set to be unlucky for Roosters (born in the year of 1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993 or 2005).  Chinese astrology dictates that Roosters will have to pay attention to their money and health extra carefully.

Although China has used the Gregorian calendar since 1912, the Chinese New Year is based on the ancient lunar calendar, which changes each year.  Roughly a sixth of the world's population will observe Chinese New Year, with celebrations in Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia and others. London and San Francisco both claim to host the largest celebrations outside of Asia.

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