Happy Australia Day and Chinese New Year Day

Sydney Museum of Contemporary Art and Harbour Bridge

Sydney Museum of Contemporary Art and Harbour Bridge

Sydney, Monday

January 26 is Australia Day, a national holiday commemorating the arrival of the First Fleet from England. Citizenship ceremonies are held in major cities, and awards given in recognition of service to community and country.

Australia Day is another opportunity for Sydneysiders to be on or near the water, enjoying the Harbour in all its glory. There are Royal Australian Air Force flyovers above the Opera House, ferry races under the Harbour Bridge, jazz concerts on the foreshores, and evening fireworks at Darling Harbour.

Today is also Chinese New Year Day, welcoming the Year of the Ox. Like many great multicultural world cities, Sydney has a large Chinese population. The Sydney Chinese New Year Festival launched this weekend, and will include food and merchandise markets, parades, theatre performances, and more fireworks celebrations in the next few weeks.  Someday I’d like to experience Chinese New Year in Paris.

Launch of 2009 Sydney Chinese New Year Festival
Launch of 2009 Sydney Chinese New Year Festival

Feels like the End of Summer

To me Australia Day feels very much like Labor Day in the U.S. It marks the unofficial end of summer (the actual end is 28 February), with the beginning of the new school year. Clive’s almost-5 year-old grandson enters kindy on Thursday, a marker day for him and his parents. Anyone who’s been working during the summer holidays will also note the return of commuter traffic.

We had Clive’s grandsons with us for the past couple days, while their parents had a well-deserved though brief getaway to celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary. Clive and I must be getting older, because today we decided to forgo the usual Australia Day festivities and stay home with a glass of wine and dinner on the balcony.

Cheers, Happy Australia Day, and Happy Chinese New Year.

Sydney Opera House This Week
Sydney Opera House

Australia Day
Sydney Chinese New Year Festival
Chinese New Year in Paris

5 Responses

  1. Such a great day, I can imagine the fun atmosphere…:-)

    Could you imagine trying to have a “England” Day…ha ha

  2. Hi Carolyn,
    Happy Australia day to you both, and to Australians everywhere !
    I enjoyed the sunshine and colors in the photos. The Opera house looks magnifique !
    Happy Chinese New years too.It’s the year of the Ox, for those following the Chinese zodiac.

    Have fun !

  3. Happy New Years and Australia Day to you too!! I hope the Ox is good to you.:-)

  4. I had some fabulous chinese food when I was in Sydney. Happy Australia Day (a little late).

  5. Anne, yes an England Day would be strange! Barbara, glad you like the sunshine and thank you, Belette and Linda for your wishes.

    Sydney definitely has great Chinese food!


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