So, happy Chinese New Year for those of you who celebrate it, and welcome to the year of the snake.
According to my token Chinese mate, who spent the majority of yesterday getting pissed in Flanagans rather than run the risk of bumping into any of her family at the celebrations on the other side of town, the year of the snake is actually considered a particularly undesirable year in the Chinese calendar to be born in, and people actually refuse to marry people who are. As it happens, my ex was born in the Year of the snake, so I wish I’d have sought out some of that Chinese wisdom before entering into that train wreck of a relationship.
Anyway, despite the disgusting weather I headed into town yesterday to see what was going on.
After braving the wind and sideways rain all the way from Old Hall Street, and remembering why it’s never a good idea to buy jarg UGGs from St. John’s, let alone wear them in the rain, we finally got to China Town just in time to catch the end of the parade.
I say we caught the end of the parade, we could see it in the distance in front of us – but with my shoes in soaking up the rain like a bleedin’ pair of sponges, I was in absolutely no state whatsoever to run after it, so I pled invalid and sent our Dee jogging after the dragon with my camera instead. She’s the little one running off into the distance like a Baywatch bird… sort of.
Ten steps later I found her doubled over, gasping for air and swearing she was never going to run again.
So, deciding that the dragon was obviously on it’s way home, we had a quick mooch around the stalls and were just about to cut our losses and go for a Chinese when we noticed a crowd forming across the grass in Great George Square.
I couldn’t believe how many people had turned up to see the end of the parade, especially considering it was still pouring down and the grass had turned into a mudbath – but despite the bad weather it was packed. And as soon as the dragon and drums started going the atmosphere was fantastic, and I actually started enjoying myself.
Between the dragon dancing and the lions performing, they began to set off Firecrackers up some makeshift scaffolding, which was great… albeit a bit terrifying when one of the fella near blew his foot off.
Eventually the performance ended and we were suitably freezing and wet, so we decided to treat ourselves to a Chinese. Apparently that was everyone else’s idea too, so you could barely get through the door in any of the restaurant’s in Chinatown, let alone get a seat.
So there was nothing else to do… with vague memories of 3am spring rolls from the Shang-ri-la whizzing through our heads we headed there for a banquet.
I can’t even begin to describe how close I was to bursting to tears when it was shut… seriously though, what Chinese restaurant closes on (surely) their busiest day of the year?
Losing the will to live and desperate for a sit down and a warm we went to Casa Italia… which, by the way, I still swear is the best restaurant in Liverpool… but that’s a post for another day.
So there you have it Queens, a wet and soggy Chinese New Year in Liverpool.