First thing first, this title is not meant to induce your sympathy or make you feel sorry for me. Actually I don’t like that every time when I tell this experience to my friends, they are kind of like ‘oh no, you must be so lonely..’

Be comfortable in you new home

We all have homesick feelings, especially during holidays and other special moments.  Lunar New Year is one of the most important day for Chinese since it means family reunion. It is quite normal to feel extremely homesick, but what’s special about Britain is her colourful culture. Even though we are in the alien land, we have numerous ways to do good with it. So no worries!

a Vietnam restaurant with orange wall in which colourful lanterns are hang from the ceiling.
photo taken at Five Rivers in Sheffield

For example, one of my friends went to Spring Festival Gala organized by the student union automatically here. International students could volunteer to perform if you have any talent, and of course you can also be audience. ‘It is really worth experiencing’ my friend Kassidy said so.

in the night rows of red lanterns are hang in the air in the Chinatown street, with subtle warm lighting.
photo taken at Chinatown in London

As for me, I made myself a hot pot with a table of dishes celebrating Chinese new year alone at home. It sounds crazy I know. I used to have new year feast with my family, but I have it alone now. I used to watch Spring Festival Gala on television, I watch it online now. It seems things are totally different in a foreign country, but you can still find the old vibe through a traditional and familiar way. This is my way to connect myself with homeland thousands of kilometres far away.

Apart from that, it is also amazing to experience Chinese vibe in Chinatown. During Lunar New Year, Chinatown in London is even busier and more ‘Chinese’ than metropolitan like Beijing or Shanghai. You will see the whole street is decorated with stunning red lanterns.

Anyway! Don’t think too much, Britain is okay.

Remember you are so lucky to have this opportunity

Well, maybe I was feeling a bit lonely when I was having a feast alone. But more importantly, I feel I was so lucky to have this uncommon chance.

I have never spent the Spring Festival in a foreign land. It is a tradition to spend the very day with my parents, grandparents and all relatives together. But because of this special night, I love my home country more. Also I have never felt family is so valuable for me.

To add this, I met two french girl in Sheffield. They were eating dumplings. Right, dumplings are snacks we must have during Lunar New Year in China. When they asked me ‘do you miss home?’ I felt very warm inside. It was like I were spending new year with my sisters.

Celebrating new year alone is a wonderful memory for the whole life of me. I connect myself with my homeland in my own way. I integrated my culture into the place that surrounds me. I got to know how people from other culture understand my culture. Most importantly, I didn’t wallow in homesickness or let bad moods erode me.