Spring is Here
Spring has a great deal of meaning in Chinese culture. Come to experience China and the word ‘Spring’ is a word that you will encounter but best of all, you’ll get to experience it. As in the West, in Chinese culture, spring is a time for things to be new again, flowers are in bloom and everything seems bright and refreshed after a cold white winter.
It’s not just the weather that changes during this wonderful season. There are also lots of parks and mountains where the new flowers and all kinds of blossoms can be appreciated and admired. In China, the cherry blossom is in bloom during the first weeks of April as well as the pear blossoms that turn the country side into a multi-colored rainbow of colors.
Festivals in Spring Time
All the new colors, new flowers, milder weather get people thinking about what to do next. As an ESL teacher in China this is a very exciting time to be in the country. While the world-renowned Spring Festival actually takes place in winter, the first week of April brings about the first festival of spring which is the Tomb Sweeping Festival. One the fourth day of the fourth month, families gather and pay homage to their dearly departed and to their ancestors, street corners come to life with bright fires of people burning paper offerings to provide their loved ones with a better in life in the here after.
It is a great time to visit the mountains during this festival. China has hundreds of national parks and if you are a big fan of Ang Lee’s movies, the final scene of ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’ was filmed near the hanging temple of Mount Can Yang Shan near Shijiazhuang in Hebei Province (if you would like to live and work in Shijiazhuang, just apply, they are currently looking for teachers).
To appreciate the beauty of spring, it’s not necessary to go outside the city, within the city limits parks are filled with people. Little children are running around, some are learning to ride a bike or even to take their first steps. Old gentlemen use large brushes to practice calligraphy on the bricks using water. With the heat, it quickly evaporates and they get to practice all over again. Some people will practice Tai Chi in the morning before going to work or have salsa lessons in the evening. All of this while surrounded by the old traditional charm of old bridges and blossoming trees.
Don’t just use your imagination to create a beautiful picture of all this in your head, you can experience this yourself while working and living in a fast growing city with a solid and well established EF school. Come and enjoy spring in China. Maybe by the time you are reading this article it’s not spring, but you’ll be coming to China for at least a year, so you’ll definitely have a chance to experience it!