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CNY advice

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EADG
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CNY advice

Postby EADG » Sat, 04 Feb 2006 7:35 pm

ok, ok, I know, it's nearly over, but I still want to Do The Right Thing with my new neighboors, who are local Chinese, family with 2 young boys

they have been having a lot of friends and family over, and have been very nice to me, I want to bring something over, but not sure what's appropriate

any suggestions?

question 2: how common is it to tip (red envelop) your guards? one of my mates did this last year but others didn't
Ape Shall Not Kill Ape

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Plavt
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Postby Plavt » Sat, 04 Feb 2006 8:07 pm

Food usuallly best guest for Chinese.

Plavt.

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Wind In My Hair
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Postby Wind In My Hair » Sat, 04 Feb 2006 11:11 pm

ha ha plavt, while that is normally true, most of us have eaten far too much in the last week or two already :-&

for CNY what matters is not so much the gift as the bringing of good fortune into the household. the usual custom is to bring over 4 mandarin oranges (which represent gold): 2 for the host and 2 for the hostess, and as you hand them over to each say things like wishing you success, prosperity, health, happiness etc. stay for half an hour or so, chitchat, eat the goodies... they will then each in return hand you 2 oranges before you leave.

the children will of course be thrilled if you gave them a red packet each. though the custom is only married people need give angpows, many have gone modern and we just give angpows to each other for good luck whether we're married or not.

as for giving red packets to the guards, i would say go ahead. we give red packets to everybody... the market vendors, estate cleaners, maids etc. all in the spirit of abundance and wishing good fortune on everyone :D

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Plavt
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Postby Plavt » Sun, 05 Feb 2006 1:00 am

Interesting information WIMH, I was just going by what I read (and haven't read for some time come to think of it). I am really wondering what the signifigance of oranges is (how do they represent gold?) though.

Hope you haven't put on too many pounds. :D :D :D

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EADG
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Postby EADG » Sun, 05 Feb 2006 3:56 am

ahh Plavt, I think I know the orange / gold connection, it's from the Chinese kanji for orange, the first chatacter being the same for gold

so WMIH, for those angpows, how much money?

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Wind In My Hair
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Postby Wind In My Hair » Sun, 05 Feb 2006 1:36 pm

EADG is right about the gold / orange connection. and plavt is right about the extra pounds... what's more those pounds seem to like me a lot as they just won't go away! :oops:

for angpows: no hard and fast rule for how much to give, except to make sure it's an even denomination ie $2, $6 etc (avoid $4 in case they are superstitious). for the neighbours' kids, depending on how well you know them, $8 is a nice auspicious number. if you want to give more as they've done a lot for you, $10 or $20 each should be okay. if you give too much the parents will feel obliged to give something back to you. they will probably give you an angpow too anyway, for good luck.

for the guards, a token $2 will suffice if that's what it is, a token. if you want to show more appreciation just increase the amount. if you give them $50 they might even take a bullet for you! :wink:

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Postby Spunky » Sun, 05 Feb 2006 8:45 pm

u know, after marrying, I learnt from my wife that $10 is an odd number...and so is $50!! :???:
So it's like $8, $12....$40....somehow $50 is more inauspicious than $40 :shock:


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