Tag Archives: WMAF

Chinese New Year celebration…

In the past weeks I read so many blog posts about the Chinese New Year and how the people will celebrate it and whatnot all. Here in Germany in my little hometown it is a bit different. Sure we would love to celebrate New Year but first of all we only hoped this time not to get sick again as all the past year. We had so bad luck each January/ February with our health that we already prepared all the medication for a week with high fever in bed. But some wonder happened and we stayed healthy! That was indeed already something new for us and actually all we hoped for.

Eating some fruits, drinking tea, Chinese New Year Gala and a dog harassing us

Back in Finland we had this big New Year celebration in Helsinki city center but here in my hometown? Not so much. Even though there are pretty many Chinese living here (we know perhaps 5% of them) there is never any event taking place. Of course they always plan to celebrate with some nice food and invite many friends over but that never happens. Thing is this is still Germany and there are no holidays over the Lunar New Year so people are just too busy to actually celebrate on a working day. We had “holidays” ourselves as we are exporting to China and we just have no customers at all for an entire week due to the holidays over there.

So what can you do when there is authentic Chinese restaurant anywhere nearby and the supermarkets have only limited amount of ingredients for making some nice Chinese dishes? You do nothing but stay home, eat snacks, have video chats with the family in China all the while the Chinese New Year Gala is blaring from the TV.  I must say it was a rather uneventful day for us and my wife was a bit down as all chat groups were filled with pictures and videos of the food in China while she was stuck with some grapes and chips.

No that was not our food this year as we couldn’t get any useful ingredients

But it all ain’t bad as this uneventful day and the entire weeks gave us time for other things. My wife finally started studying for her driving license again after starting it back in 2017! I also had time to do some video editing and finished our holiday “movie” from 2015 and started now the editing process for 2016 in which we had the crazy city tour in China.

How did you celebrate the Chinese New Year?

Be sure to follow me also on Facebook and on Twitter as I will post there occasionally pictures which do not find their way into my blog posts. Furthermore there is also my Instagram account in which from time to time some pictures and short videos might pop up.

https://www.facebook.com/CrazyChineseFamily

https://twitter.com/CraChineseFam

https://www.instagram.com/Crazychinesefamily

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Too many Passports in the Family

A couple of years ago I had a little blog post about the various passports in our family. Back then I thought it was rather amusing to have so many different ones but by now I have changed my mind.

I have both the Finnish and the German nationality and this also applies to both kids Nathan and Nathalie. They got both nationalities due to jus sanguinis which is applied both in Germany and in Finland. I on the other hand have both nationalities as my father is German and my mother in Finnish. But as my wife is Chinese and maintains her Chinese passport both kids are by Chinese law also Chinese citizens. However as China does not recognize dual citizenship they are per se really Chinese. Some smart people in some higher ranks in China probably realized that this is not such a great idea to just say no to such interracial kids and thus they soften the regulations and voila the Chinese travel document was created. At the beginning it was only valid for two years but by now (at least according to our embassy visit in 2018) our kids can (re)apply for it untill they are turn 18.

Just a few of the passports in our collection by now

Alright so we got now actually three Nationalities for the kids (kind of three, more like 2 1/2 right now with the travel document). This all sounds pretty nice to have especially when traveling as the Finnish and the German Passport belong to the most powerful ones in some rankings. It basically means that they have one of the most visa free travel rights around the globe. Really great isn’t it? Well that is till you actually travel somewhere as a family. No we do not take all the passports with us as that would be just madness. But alone for the two kids we need to have already 4 Passports with us! Especially when we are at the check-in/ luggage drop at the airport things can get a bit messy. For example last year in Japan (Osaka) the check-in took nearly an entire hour for us as the staff was just too confused with all the documents we had with us. To make it even worse for the staff we had not checked beforehand which passports we took with us. This means that Nathan and Nathalie had both their German passport and the Chinese travel document with them. But what was so confusing for the staff was the fact that I had only my Finnish passport with me and they could not quiet understand how the kids can have the German passport but non of the parents have one!

What is my nationality?

For this years’ trip to China (and perhaps Thailand) we will make sure to take the “proper” passports with us. Meaning that the kids and I have all the German papers with us in order to not overly confuse any staff at the airports. Besides this year my father won’t be coming with us so there will be one less passport to handle. I never imagined back in the day that the whole passport matter could cause trouble at the airports. I did started to realize it first time when applying two years ago for a Visa for China here in Germany and I brought only my Finnish Passport along. Oh what trouble that was as I had to bring a paper from my hometown stating that I am a registered foreigner even though I am actually German but just could not prove it at the Visa Center.

Did ever run into any troubles at an airport?

Be sure to follow me also on Facebook and on Twitter as I will post there occasionally pictures which do not find their way into my blog posts. Furthermore there is also my Instagram account in which from time to time some pictures and short videos might pop up.

https://www.facebook.com/CrazyChineseFamily

https://twitter.com/CraChineseFam

https://www.instagram.com/Crazychinesefamily

New Year and Fireworks done wrong

2018 is history and with it hopefully all the bad luck which accumulated towards the end of the year. Now we welcome 2019 and have big hopes that it will turn out better. So how did we celebrate the New Year? Same procedure as every year! We celebrated at home and had some Raclette with my father and brother. My mom decided as every year to have her peace from the family and just watch TV till we would come downstairs around 11pm.

Picture from few years ago but it was pretty much the same again this time

Yes there was nothing extraordinary with our New Year celebration and I am really happy about it as I had kind of other worries. Until we got Haruki the Shiba I never really thought much about the effect fireworks might have on animals. No, I was never one of those idiots buying a massive amount of fireworks and crackers to basically burn away my money on New Year but I liked to have few rockets ready for the big event. This year is was slightly different. In November Haruki and I had already a bad encounter with some youths throwing firecrackers at us in the dark resulting that the dog was terrified for a week and did not dare to go out of the apartment. He recovered but this made me worry a lot about New Year.

Nathalie stealing Harukis’ spot at New Year

I don’t know how it is in other countries but here a lot of people just go crazy with their private fireworks. For example this year the police arrested a man with over 850kg of fireworks! Who on earth needs that? As soon as there are posts online about respecting the animals and not to have such big fireworks they get swamped with hate comments. It is just insane how people think that their freedom will be taken away just by asking them to buy fewer fireworks. I really doubt that anyone will suffer from not being allowed to blow up half the neighbourhood on New Year but nothing is done against it and won’t be done in the next years.

Haruki with his constant sad face

Not only we had the bad encounter in November but just two days before New Year once again some youths threw firecrackers at us and they exploded right at Haruki resulting in a terrified dog with burns in his face. So I was preparing for the worst on New Year but the little warrior kept relatively calm during the whole evening even when outside. Only when the big fireworks began he started to shake but my mother kept in safe in her arms and he calmed down. Now that 2019 has begun I read every day posts from people searching for their pets as they ran away on New Year. I wonder how many are actually able to find their beloved pet again as those animals are terrified and just run in any direction during the fireworks. Once I read an article where a dog had run to another State and was found few years later over 200 km away!

For the next time New Year is coming up I will try to get some “training” done with Haruki in order to prevent too extreme reactions. Besides that I will also try to find something to throw at those kids if they get too close with their fireworks!

 

How did you celebrate New Year?

Be sure to follow me also on Facebook and on Twitter as I will post there occasionally pictures which do not find their way into my blog posts. Furthermore there is also my Instagram account in which from time to time some pictures and short videos might pop up.

https://www.facebook.com/CrazyChineseFamily

https://twitter.com/CraChineseFam

https://www.instagram.com/Crazychinesefamily