The Family Reunion – An Annual Pilgrimage


So it’s that time of year again. The Lunar New Year arrives, and we witness the happy congregation of dispersed Chinese at the home of their family elders. They perform tuan yuan (reunion). In essence, they return from all corners of the land, the region and the world to wei lu – to gather literally around the family hearth for a massive meal. (It’s always about a meal, isn’t it?)

It can be quite a huge undertaking for those of limited means, but the very act of returning to the place of one’s childhood, to touch base with aged relatives, siblings and other relatives, is meant to strengthen the sense of belonging that we all need in order to reorientate ourselves in the world annually.

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