Most people think studying overseas is awesome, cos you get to travel and you get your independence and stuff. Which is perfectly true, until something like Chinese New Year pops up. Chinese New Year is a big thing in Singapore, and in most other countries where there is a significant Chinese community. Chinese New Year is not so much a big thing here, in Cambridge.
I blogged about my first CNY here last year, which was generally quite a tempered if homesick post. But I sometimes feel that CNY here is a lot about your "social status". Do you have people to celebrate CNY with, outside of organised activities? Or are you going to be spending your CNY eve kinda on your own?
Social media can help make you feel worse, when people upload photos of themselves with friends and food. It makes you wonder if every other Chinese out there is at this moment, surrounded by the warmth of friends and food, and perhaps just too busy enjoying themselves to post photos of food(cos the food is of course, a very important part of Chinese New Year)/selfies on Facebook.
But of course, that's not entirely true. Some of us are just spending a quiet night in our rooms, as any other night, writing our essays/lab reports (or drawing/colouring geological maps). And most probably, missing home/family/friends/food very much.
Not meant to be an entirely emo, poor-me post, but just something I thought about. I Skyped my family earlier at lunchtime while they were having/after they had reunion dinner (yay 8 hours time difference), and while I miss the people and the food, I'm glad to be able to escape those CNY questions for another year. Not particularly keen on hearing "有没有男朋友了啊？" (do you have a boyfriend?) over and over again.
On a side note, I've been seeing a lot less about not eating sharks' fin soup on Facebook in the run up to this year's CNY. I guess people are generally a lot more aware now, which is good, and it seems this is reflected in consumption trends. If CNA can be relied on.
Anyway, no matter where you are/who you're surrounded by, hope you have a Happy Chinese New Year. And if you are celebrating it on your own, maybe you will be comforted by the knowledge that there are many others out there in the same position! I do wish people wouldn't feel alone, cos that's an awful feeling.