Dragon Hunting In the Rain

January 30, 2012

Given the title of my blog it is about time I wrote something about dragons. This year is the Chinese Year of the Dragon and I thought it this was the perfect opportunity.  On Sunday we went Chinatown in the centre of Newcastle where the celebrations for Chinese New Year were taking place.  This is an event that happens every year but strangely enough we had never been before.  My son was keen to go as he had been learning about Chinese New Year in school and I thought it would be interesting so we went to catch a bus.

I will break here for a quick rant about the Sunday service on the buses. We had to wait over three quarters of an hour for a bus, it seemed the first one had come early and the next one was late so we missed the start of the dragon hunt. I was not impressed. We did manage to get to China Town just in time for the start of the procession of the dragon along the street.

My first impression was that it was very crowded and very noisy. As well as lots of  firecrackers going off there were lots of drums and cymbals making music that the dragon was dancing too.  We could hear the dragon but we could not see what was going on though the crowds.

My son was desperate to see what was going on and kept demanding I lift him up. I think that he forgets he is now eleven and nearly as big as me. I did my best to try and lift him but really I needed a crane for that job.  We worked out way though the crowds to try and get a sight of the dragon. I was holding on really tightly to my son’s hand as I was scared that I might lose him, but he seemed to be really enjoying pushing his way though the crowds.

It was quite good fun, the dragon would go to each restaurant and shop along the street, stop for a while and perform his dragon dance. I assume the dragon dance was to bring good luck and prosperity to each shop along the way.  We did manage to get quite a few glimpses of him but taking photographs was very difficult given that he was moving so fast. These are the couple of photos I managed to take where you can just see a little bit of him.

If you look by the two flags you can just see a little bit of the dragons ear.  The flags were used to indicate the procession of the dragon along the street and were placed on either side of the doorway when he danced. The people in yellow are playing the drums and cymbals.

The next shot is a little better, I managed to get a picture of his head.

I have to say we had a really fun afternoon chasing the dragon down the street, even though it was crowded and started pouring with rain. We will definitely go again next year but try and get there a bit earlier.

Other posts you may be interested in:

A trip to Beamish Museum

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