By Xu Zhuowei
To celebrate the approaching Spring Festival, on January 16, over 20 expats joined a joyful celebration in Longguan Township, Haishu District, taking part in traditional activities such as making paper-cutting art, preparing rice cakes, dressing up in Hanfu robes, and a tea ceremony.
Expats from the United States, Russia, Poland, India, Bangladesh, Singapore, South Africa and many other parts of the world followed the Chinese instructors as they demonstrated how to cut out rabbit designs on red paper that could be pasted on windows as holiday decoration. Soon, the participants were creating their own intricate work. Laughter permeated the festive atmosphere, warmed by the smell of hot rice cakes and refreshing Chinese tea.
"The most memorable thing for me today is learning paper-cutting art! Although it is very difficult, the experience was fun!" Stacey from South Africa has been working in Ningbo's education sector since 2013. During the past decade, she has made many friends and fallen in love with the city's vibe. She now regards Ningbo as her "second home".
Sannia from Indonesia has worked in Ningbo for 9 years, but this is her first time making New Year rice cakes, an authentic Ningbo treat full of the city's unique flavour. "I love this city. During previous Spring Festivals, I travelled to other cities across China, but this year I intend to stay in Ningbo and spend time with my friends here to fully enjoy the comfort of home."
In recent years, Ningbo's thriving economy has attracted many overseas citizens to start businesses, launch new careers, and settle down. One organizer of the Longguan event said, "Many of the expats here today plan to stay in Ningbo for this year's Lunar New Year. Through this event, we want to share with the expat community our holiday cheer, so they could feel the warmth of home even in a foreign country."
Chief Adviser: Zhao Qingchuan
Proofreader: Xu Zhuowei