Bad luck Chinese New Year Superstitions:
Buying a pair of shoes is considered bad luck amongst some Chinese. The word “shoes” is a homophone for the word for “rough” in Cantonese, or “evil” in Mandarin.
I am not planning on buying a pair of shoes since I just got a new pair of “red” boots while in Australia. I ordered them while I was there and just received them. Red symbolizes flames, which will scare the evil away. Traditionally, people wore red shoes, but today it is underwear.
I am all set to scare away the evil spirits.
The Nian monster tells the story of the origin of the festival. The fearsome Nianshou is a mythical beast who has a taste for human flesh. Nian, also a homonym for “year”, used to roam wild at the start of spring, terrorizing villages and devouring townsfolk. (Reminds me of the story of Abiyoyo) One year, an old man fought off the creature with firecrackers, loud drums, bright lights and red banners. That old man set the CNY stage for a millennia to come.
I am ready to jump into the tradition, with my new red boots, will have to buy some red clothes, watch some fireworks, and embrace 15 days of the loudest, wildest cultural festival on Earth. I don’t know if it can get as loud as it was in Changzhi when the guards were setting off what seemed to be sticks of dynamite (huge huge firecrackers) at 7:00 in the morning. Will let you know.