Sunday, March 22, 2015

Afternoon walks

In my French family, there is a tradition to have a walk in the afternoon after lunch. There are plenty of parks and woods with walking trails around, and most often we are not alone. We are joined usually by families with young kids, old couples holding hands, or a man or a woman walking their dog. We do not have this tradition in our own small family but since we have nice weather at the end of winter, we decided to go out for an afternoon walk. We loved it so we continued with more walks in the wood.

On a sunny day, trees are clearly reflected on the lake surface.

The leaveless trees are welcoming spring who would revitalizing their life.

Walking in the wood. It is such a huge difference to a tropical forest.

The little girl is happy to go out. These days she waves her arms and legs in excitement realizing that we are heading out.

Dozing off on daddy's chest, so comfortable.

The big girl has plenty to do : picking up flowers, collecting stones, touching everything with her stick...

Most of the time she walks behind us since she has too many things to occupy herself. But from time to time she rushes to catch up with us.

Passing through a bridge. It is actually a canal bridge.

Walking through a tunnal, the big girl liked the echoing effect.

While enjoying the peaceful scenery, it made me think of a Chinese poem I once learnt at school.
Withered vine, old tree, crows at dusk (枯藤老树昏鸦) 

Here I'm replacing crows with ducks since they sound the same in Mandarin. :-)

Tiny bridge, flowing brook, cottages (小桥流水人家) 

Acient road, west wine, lean nag 古道西风瘦马

The poem ends with:
The sun sinking west, a heart-torn traveler at the end of the world (夕阳西下, 断肠人在天涯)

It resonates in a sad atmosphere but it was certainly not how I felt at that moment. It actually warmed my heart with the peaceful, tranquility ambiance, especially the lovely time I got to spend with my beloved family. 

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Chinese New Year Movies 2015

When I was a teenager, I loved Chinese New Year. Beside getting the red envelope and savoring plenty of good foods, I especially enjoyed time spending with friends, hopping from one house to another, and going to the cinema for Chinese New Year movies.

This must be an unique tradition in the Chinese movie markets I guess, as I don't think they do the same thing during Christmas or Deepavali. The movies do not necessary linked to anything CNY, but normally at the end of the film, the actors and actress would reappear on the screen and express their blessing to the audiences. 

There are 8 movies on the list during CNY this year. My favorite is Triumps in The Skies. I watched this drama series years back and I really love Francis Ng (吴镇宇).

If I were in Malaysia, I would probably go watch From Vegas to Macau II since it is starring by Chow Yun-Fat.

Lucky Star 2015, a typical CNY theme movie (Hong Kong), I would go for it if I long for good laugh.

The King of Mahjong is directed by a Malaysian, with a Singaporean actor pairing with some Hong Kong stars. I would go to support the Malaysian/Singaporean film industry. Even though the market is limited, Malaysian/Singaporean films are blooming, they have joined the CNY market a while back.

Another CNY theme movie with a Singaporean actor.

Franckly I don't like Jackie Chan's movie, too much actions, I think it is more appealing to the men audiences. His films are always the big hit during CNY.

Sandra Ng becomes a man? Worth watching. 12 Golden Ducks.

Another Hong Kong theme CNY movie.

These firms are not aired in France, I would rely on the internet if I want to watch them. How about you? Have you watched at least one CNY movie since the first day of CNY?

The Yee Sang Puree

It has become a tradition that we have Yee Sang during Chinese New Year (CNY). It is a dish to be eaten during the 7th day of CNY to celerate the day of Human. It is a common celebration among the Chinese communities in Malaysia and Singapore, less common in China tough.

This year I prepared twice the dish to celebrate with two different groups. I didn't follow the Malaysian recipe as I can't really get the same ingredients, and some people don't like raw fish. Instead, I created a simple platter consisted of seven kind of colorful vegetables, and a sprinkle of sesame seed. It was quite well received by the French, the tossing ritual was convivial. We ate them as starter / entrée.

We had some leftover vegetables afterthat, and since we were running out of food for Awena, I decided to make her some Yee Sang puree.

Since she was too young to join us while tossing and enjoying the dish, this would make up for her.

She dislikes pieces in her puree, so I needed to make sure all the ingredients are well blended.

And the verdict? Well, she didn't like it that much. It was the first time she didn't finish her meal in the sitter's place, and she was less enthousist during dinner seeing this puree again.

It doesn't matter, at least we know there are things she doesn't like.