Gong hei fat choi! Happy Chinese (Lunar) New Year to you my friends. May the Year of the Water Tiger bring you strength, courage and the facing of your demons in this third pandemic year. Some of you, like me, may be feeling a bit battle weary as we try to live with COVID-19 and while it’s a different life to pre-2020, I hope you find that life – despite its imperfections – is still well worth living. We have no choice but to go on with love, not fear, in our heads and our hearts as we slowly, inexorably continue to move forward.
While celebrations have been cancelled or postponed again this year at various locations, Westfield Doncaster has held a number of lunar new year events and other locations around Victoria are also holding events but check with relevant municipalities to be sure. I still remember visiting Bendigo for their Easter Festival a number of years ago and being very touched to see its Chinese history being celebrated including a dragon parade and lion dance performances by the Chinese Youth Society of Melbourne. A visit to the Golden Dragon Museum there is worth a visit as well as the Chinese Museum in Melbourne’s Chinatown.
I’m glad that the Oriental Teahouse is still open for business in Chapel Street (if venturing south side) and Little Collins Street in the city and I was also interested to read about Hong Kong style cafe Mongkok Teahouse opening in Camberwell. I’m still yet to visit modern Chinese fine diner Lee Ho Fook but a number of friends of mine (Chinese and non-Chinese alike) have celebrated milestone birthdays at old Cantonese favourite and Melbourne institution Flower Drum.
A number of ANZSOG’s alumni were awarded Australia Day honours this year but I was really happy to hear that Chinese Australian writer Alice Pung OAM had received an Order of Australia Medal for her contribution towards literature. I’ve not read her latest book One Hundred Days but it is on the list. While I’ve never met her, I have attended one of her virtual lectures and I think she’s a very humble, modest and deserving winner.
Finally Mr Rosanna and I have been very busy at home and I will reveal more in coming weeks and months, however we’ve still made time to celebrate special occasions over the past year including this picture of us taken at my birthday celebration last year – I hope you enjoy it! Here’s to riding the wild tiger in 2022…
PS. Late breaking news – don’t forget that Twilight Sounds is on next Saturday 12 February from 4 – 10pm if you’re after some local open air live entertainment. The legendary headline act is Joe Camilleri and The Black Sorrows while Banyule local Wilbur Wilde will also be playing.