Events celebrating Chinese New Year have been held across New York for a week now (including my dim sum making last Sunday), but today they reached a dramatic, colourful conclusion with the parade.
The event was very nearly right on my doorstep. Furry dragons, sequined snakes and lantern-adorned floats left Chinatown, bobbed along Mott Street (parallel to my street) and towards Tribeca as children let off confetti canons and beautifully-made up women waved to families below.
The only problem was that they didn’t really go anywhere. After arriving at the parade full of New Year spirit, my cheer was knocked by the waiting. The floats and bands inched forward at a rate of about a foot every ten minutes. At one point, as I craned to see a dancing dragon, a particularly sharp-elbowed tourist knocked me into a palette of fish:
It was then that I decided to do the parade myself – that is, by walking from its stagnant start to its finish.
Of course it warmed me back up in no time. And once again it felt ridiculous that I live here, and just a block away from all this excitement and culture.
Happy new year!