Happy Year of the Snake

Welcome to the billion odd Chinese people who are even now flocking to the party. Because today it’s Chinese New Year.


Well, given that the world is so big and time is so odd, it’s already BEEN Chinese New Year in some parts of the world   (Asia and Australia for example) and only just started here.  So I was always going to be out of synch with these two events.  I guess there may be a lot of hung over Chinese blearily looking at this post. Maybe. Or none. Or they are all still asleep.


A couple of years ago when it was Year of the Rabbit (which is the year I was born in) we went the whole hog and decked the house out in Chinese decorations. Not ‘doing’ Christmas our house doesn’t get much of a decorative overhaul ever and it was quite interesting to see it bathed in red for a fortnight.  I particularly liked all the traditions of not cleaning the house on New Year’s Day in case you dust away the luck. I think I may have taken that tradition too far since though! All I can say is we must have a very very lucky house by now!

However, for me this Chinese New Year is more exciting than most, and that’s because I am now virtual friends with a ‘real’ Chinese (origin) person who celebrates it for real.  One of the joys of ebooks and the ‘indie’ world is that you can find all kinds of things you never even would have thought existed and one of these came my way earlier in the year in the form of THE YELLOW BANANA. 

yellow banana

The search inside feature on Amazon was all that I needed to convince me I was going to love this story and I did.  My review is available here so I don’t need to repeat myself ad nauseam.

Another of the great things about this wired world where time means nothing and the phrase ‘it’s a hard day’s night’ can, if interrogated, have a whole new meaning, is that you can MEET writers.  Even if they are in Australia and you are in Scotland.  How great is that? And over the last few months I’ve got to know Jian  aka Yellow Banana aka Steven Wong.  We’ve exchanged views, thoughts, pictures, songs and generally done all that you can to get to know someone who lives on the other side of the world who has their day before you even get up however early that is.  We’ve talked books and talked technology. We’ve found things in common that show that culture is much more a thing of the heart than of geographical location. And that gives me more joy in the whole concept of Chinese New Year.  So I raise a chopstick to Jian and his family and to everyone who celebrates anything today.  We’ll be eating dim sum for lunch and a full Chinese feast for dinner with some Tsing Tso beer and generally having a great time.

Do you have a desire to bridge the culture gap and find out what life is like for someone who comes from a world quite unlike your own and yet… then download The Yellow Banana and be charmed by Jian the way I was  It’s available on ALL platforms so there’s no excuses.  You can read a great book and possibly make a new friend into the bargain. 

But I’ll be back before the feasting commences with my second post of the day because it’s also Bertholt Brecht’s anniversary and I can’t ignore that. I shunned him long enough in my youth. Of that, more later.


About callyphillips

5 Responses to Happy Year of the Snake

  1. jan needle says:

    hallo cally. glad you’re back. i was worried yesterday because you didn’t post. i’m about to be snowed in again, which is a pity because we were having a musical session at the keys tonight with food and frolics for my birthday. bloody saddleworth – as soon as the temp drops below 75 the snow blocks off all routes. ne’er mind. next sunday will do just as well.

    one major gripe, however. get bertolt brecht’s name right, or you’re dead. okay? this is your one warning out of one, geddit? as the great man would have said himself – the proof of the pudding is in the eating…

    • Aye Jan. Corrected. Utterly. Was celebrating LIFE yesterday. Can’t post EVERY day or its work innit? Twice today though as a penance. Snow here again too. We’ve had our spring yesterday, skipped summer and autumn and straght back to snow.

  2. jan needle says:

    consider yourself forgiven

  3. Cally
    Thank you for your post. Happy Chinese New Year to you too and may your year of the snake be filled with everlasting peace and fulfilment.

  4. Christine Chan says:

    Many Chinese in Malaysia eat vegetarian food on first day of Chinese New Year. For Hokkiens (people originated from the Fujian privince of Chna), the 9th day of the new lunar year is more important than the 1st day.

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