Chinese New Year means nothing to the Japanese , it is another day at work or school or home.
But for us Singaporeans who are Chinese , living in Sendai , we really missed the atmosphere of CNY back home. The re-union dinner on the eve , where family will get together for a meal . For Christina and I it is usually done at her mother’s home. ( steam-boat , YuSheng , lor-duck , ngoh hiang , vegetable soup with fish ball and abalone…etc..) .On the first and second day of CNY , it is visiting relatives and friends . Highlight was a meal at my sister’s house ( home cooked cantonese food ) . We are proud of Clarence and Caroline who took over the responsibility of visiting some of our close friends , former neighbours and relatives while we are away in Sendai, Japan.
Yes , we missed having CNY back home ! But we did try to create the traditional CNY atmosphere in Sendai.
The Gideonite team had our own re-union dinner with white radish cake and Yusheng ( Christina’s original recipe of Japanese Yusheng – fish sashimi , 2 packs of Japanese salad , one pack of Totilla chips – crushed , black sesame seeds with soya sauce, honey , lemon juice, olive oil ) Oishii !!!
On first day of CNY we had steamboat dinner ( Nabe – Japanese style steamboat ) together with a new friend from China who volunteered to personally make and cook chinese dumplings (jiaozhi) for us .
On the second day , we invited our new friends in Sendai to celebrate CNY with us. The Gideonite chef ( Christina and Pek Kuan ) whipped up a sumptuous meal for the guest ( curry chicken , glutinous rice , fried beehoon , white radish cake ) . Not forgetting the traditional cookies for CNY like pineapple tarts , love letters cookies etc.. CNY is not complete without a round of singing CNY songs ( led by Victoria ) , giving of Ang-Pows (chocolates not money ) to kids .We shared “iBless” to bless our guests.
During the CNY celebration we took the opportunity to promote our upcoming events in Feb and Mar…English Circles for kids and for teens/adults – 8 sessions of learning and speaking English in a a fun and relaxed environment. There will be singing, games , speech ,drama and food :))
As usual , we were up at 7 am on Sunday morning , driving 140 km north to Kesennuma for the worship service at KFBBC . Our 2 and half hour journey was amongst snow covered landscape . At KFBBC , we sang our CNY Gongxi song and got the congregation to bless and greet each other with “Gongxi, Gongxi” . We had a wonderful time of worship . Thereafter we went to visit a Kasetsujyutaka ( Temporary Housing Unit cluster ) to bring our CNY cheers to them with CNY cookies , cakes and “Bak Kwa ” . We sang the songs ” Sukiyaki” ( some of you might remember this old Japanese song) and ” Born to be loved ” . One old lady was so touched by the songs and her first words after singing is that she did not understand what love is as she has not been loved “
Gong Xi Fa Cai Pastor Caleb and Christina!!! 🙂 may God continue to bless the work of your hands in Japan:) so good to read about how well you’re connecting and reaching out to your new neighbours and friends!