除夕(chú xī), the Lunar New Year’s Eve, is today. The first character, 除, means “elimination” and the second, 夕, means “evening” – so what gets eliminated this evening?
An ancient child-eating monster!
But wait, the monster is afraid of red things and loud noises! Aha!
Bring the red decorations and the fireworks! Ha, there he goes!
People have 7 days off. At home, older people give red packets with money to the children, and everybody makes dumplings – often putting a coin inside one of them, which brings a whole year of good luck to whoever gets it.
Many people put a poster on their door with the lucky character, 福, then tilt it upside down: “Upside down” sounds like “come” – exactly what the New Year does!
And that’s how the Chinese New Year season kicks off! Stay tuned: We smell a theme week coming up!
No monsters here. Baidu Baike