Chinese New Year - Part 4


Hello! It’s only a couple of days left until the first day of Chinese New Year. I have prepared a conversation for you today with 2 of my students, 榴[lau4]槤[lin4] Durian and 威[wai1]哥[go1] Brother Way. I am very very grateful I was able to get their help to create this episode together so you will get to listen to different Cantonese voices as well as different accents. In this conversation, 榴[lau4]槤[lin4] Durian and 威[wai1]哥[go1] Brother Way came to my home to visit me during the Chinese New Year, you will hear some activities we do for Chinese New Year, some names of the decorations and food. Hopefully you will find this episode helpful, if not able to say or use these terms covered in this episode, as least you can understand what people are saying when you do go visit during Chinese New Year!

A: 咦[yi4/yi2]?榴[lau4]槤[lin4]!威[wai1]哥[go1]!嚟[lai4]咗[jo2]啦[la1]?恭[gung1]喜[hei2]發[faat3]財[choi4]!

B: Dummy! 新[san1]年[nin4]快[faai3]樂[lok6]!身[san1]體[tai2]健[gin6]康[hong1]!青[ching1]春[cheun1]常[seung4]駐[jyu3]!

C: Dummy, 我[ngo5]祝[juk1]你[nei5]出[cheut1]入[yap6]平[ping4]安[on1],牛[ngau4]年[nin4]大[daai6]吉[gat1]!

A: 隨[cheui4]便[bin2]坐[jo6/cho5]啊[a1]!唔[m4]好[hou2]客[haak3]氣[hei3]!

B: 嘩[wa1]!Dummy, 你[nei5]屋[uk1]企[kei2]啲[di1]佈[bou3]置[ji3]好[hou2]靚[leng3]喎[wo3]!

A: 哦[ngo4]!呢[ni1]啲[di1]揮[fai1]春[cheun1]係[hai6]樓[lau4]下[ha6]派[paai3]㗎[ga3]!你[nei5]哋[dei6]想[seung2]唔[m4]想[seung2]要[yiu3]呀[a3]?我[ngo5]有[yau5]好[hou2]多[do1],俾[bei2]啲[di1]你[nei5]哋[dei6]啦[la1]!

C: 唔[m4]好[hou2]啦[la1],多[do1]謝[je6]你[nei5]先[sin1]啦[la1]。我[ngo5]通[tung1]常[seung4]都[dou1]去[heui3]人[yan4]哋[dei6]屋[uk1]企[kei2]拜[baai3]年[nin4],好[hou2]少[siu2]有[yau5]人[yan4]去[heui3]我[ngo5]屋[uk1]企[kei2]拜[baai3]年[nin4]嘅[ge3]。

B: 咁[gam3/gam2]我[ngo5]要[yiu3]啦[la1],留[lau4]返[faan1]下[ha6]一[yat1]年[nin4]都[dou1]好[hou2]呀[a3]。

C: 但[daan6]係[hai6]啲[di1]揮[fai1]春[cheun1]可[ho2]唔[m4]可[ho2]以[yi5]下[ha6]一[yat1]年[nin4]再[joi3]用[yung6]再[joi3]貼[tip3]㗎[ga3]?會[wui5]唔[m4]會[wui5]好[hou2]唔[m4]吉[gat1]利[lei6]㗎[ga3]?

A: 有[yau5]啲[di1]人[yan4]會[wui6/wui2/wui5],有[yau5]啲[di1]人[yan4]唔[m4]會[wui5]。有[yau5]啲[di1]人[yan4]覺[gok3]得[dak1]浪[long6]費[fai3]呀[a3]嘛[ma1/ma4],咪[mai5/mai6/mi1]再[joi3]用[yung6]囉[lo1]。

B: 唔[m4]緊[gan2]要[yiu3]啦[la1],我[ngo5]都[dou1]唔[m4]迷[mai4]信[seun3]嘅[ge3]。環[waan4]保[bou2]啲[di1]呀[a3]嘛[ma1/ma4]。差[cha1]啲[di1]唔[m4]記[gei3]得[dak1]咗[jo2]!我[ngo5]帶[daai3]咗[jo2]啲[di1]年[nin4]糕[gou1],蘿[lo4]蔔[baak6]糕[gou1],芋[wu6]頭[tau2]糕[gou1]俾[bei2]你[nei5]啊[a1]!


B: 唔[m4]使[sai2]咁[gam3/gam2]客[haak3]氣[hei3]啦[la1]!呢[ni1]啲[di1]糕[gou1]點[dim2]係[hai6]我[ngo5]自[ji6]己[gei2]整[jing2]㗎[ga3]咋[ja3]!


B: 威[wai1]哥[go1],你[nei5]有[yau5]冇[mou5]帶[daai3]嘢[ye5]嚟[lai4]送[sung3]俾[bei2]人[yan4]呀[a3]?你[nei5]拜[baai3]年[nin4]兩[leung5]手[sau2]Fing Fing好[hou2]冇[mou2]禮[lai5]貌[maau6]㗎[ga3]!



C: 個[go3]盒[hap6/hap2]入[yap6]邊[bin1]呢[ni1]啲[di1]叫[giu3]咩[me1]名[meng2]啊[a1]?


C: 呢[ni1]隻[jek3]有[yau5]白[baak6]兔[tou3]仔[jai2]嘅[ge3]糖[tong4/tong2],我[ngo5]次[chi3]次[chi3]去[heui3]拜[baai3]年[nin4]都[dou1]見[gin3]到[dou2]㗎[ga3]。

B: 呢[ni1]隻[jek3]叫[giu3]白[baak6]兔[tou3]糖[tong4/tong2]呀[a3]。我[ngo5]個[go3]女[neui5]好[hou2]鍾[jung1]意[yi3]食[sik6]㗎[ga3]。

A: 攞[lo2]幾[gei2]粒[lap1]返[faan1]去[heui3]啦[la1],係[hai6]全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2]攞[lo2]嘢[ye5]食[sik6]叫[giu3]做[jou6]找[jaau2]銀[ngan4/ngan2]。好[hou2]好[hou2]意[yi3]頭[tau4]㗎[ga3]。











A: Oh? Durian! Brother Way! You are here already? Gung Hey Fat Choy!

B: Dummy! Happy New Year! Body healthy! Beautiful always!

C: Dummy! I wish you safety going out and coming home, Ox Year Very lucky!

A: Please sit anywhere! Don’t be polite!

B: Wow! Dummy, your home’s decorations are very pretty!

A: Oh! Those Fai Chuns were distributed downstairs! Do you both want some? I have a lot, can give you guys some!

C: No, thank you in advance. I typically go to other people’s places to visit them for Chinese New Year, rarely do people come to visit me.

B: Then I will take it, it’d be good to save it for next year.

C: But can we put these Fai Chuns up again next year? Will it be unlucky?

A: Some people do, some people don’t. Some people think that it’s wasteful, so they reuse them.

B: Never mind. I am not superstitious. Be a little more environmentally friendly. Oh I almost forgot! I brought you some Year cakes, Turnip cake and Taro cake!

A: Aiya! Why are you so polite! Here, let me give you some red pockets in return for the gifts.

B: No need to be so polite! Those cakes I just made them myself!

A: No, it’s the new year. Here, lucky lucky.

B: Brother Way, did you bring anything for her? To visit people in Chinese New Year if both of your hands are empty, it’s very impolite!

C: I am so sorry. I am really not familiar with the traditions.

A: No worries. If you don’t know, you are not guilty.

C: What are these things in this box called?

A: This is 全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2] the year box, the box that contains food for Chinese New year. Typically they have sugar lotus seeds, melon seeds and some candy.

C: This Candy that has a rabbit on it, I see it every time I go visit someone during Chinese New year.

B: This one is called Large rabbit creamy candy, my daughter loves them.

A: Take a couple home! Grabbing food from the 全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2], the box that contains food for Chinese New year is called 找[jaau2]銀[ngan4/ngan2] grabbing silver. It is a lucky thing to do!

B: So I am not going to hold back then.

C: I will also grab some.

A: So then in the Lunar New year, what’s there to do for you both?

C: Normally during Chinese New Year I would return to my hometown, but this year I cannot.

A: That’s alright. Now you have the opportunity to come to my home.

B: I am still going to visit other people for Chinese New Year later on, but tomorrow I have arranged for my friends to come to my home to play Mahjong.

A: Oh! Durian you know how to play Mahjong? Brother Way, do you know how to play?

C: I don’t know how to.

A: Ok, next time when we have four people, Durian and I will teach you how to play!

C: Great!

So Dummy saw them and called out their names and said 嚟[lai4]咗[jo2]啦[la1]?meaning came already? Meaning you are here already? Then she said 恭[gung1]喜[hei2]發[faat3]財[choi4]!I explained this last episode meaning congrats on your wealth.

Then 榴[lau4]槤[lin4] Durian said 新[san1]年[nin4]快[faai3]樂[lok6]!Happy new Year! 身[san1]體[tai2]健[gin6]康[hong1]!Good health and 青[ching1]春[cheun1]常[seung4]駐[jyu3]!youth will stay with you always.

And Brother way said 我[ngo5]祝[juk1]你[nei5]出[cheut1]入[yap6]平[ping4]安[on1],I wish you safety going out and coming home. 祝[juk1] means to wish. So for example, I wish you a happy birthday, 我[ngo5]祝[juk1]你[nei5]生[saang1]日[yat6]快[faai3]樂[lok6]. Then he said 牛[ngau4]年[nin4]大[daai6]吉[gat1]!meaning ox year very lucky.

If you don’t remember any of these Chinese Sayings, you can go back to my last episode on Chinese New Year part 3, around the middle of the episode, you will find some of the more common sayings.

Dummy said 隨[cheui4]便[bin2]坐[jo6/cho5]啊[a1]!please sit anywhere, 隨[cheui4]便[bin2] means casual. 坐[jo6/cho5] means to sit, so meaning literally casually sit, really it means make yourselves comfortable, sit anywhere. She then said 唔[m4]好[hou2]客[haak3]氣[hei3]!meaning don’t be polite. In the Thank you in 19 different ways episode, I talked about 唔[m4]好[hou2]客[haak3]氣[hei3]!to mean you are welcome. Clearly in this context, no one was thanking anyone, so here 唔[m4]好[hou2]客[haak3]氣[hei3]!means do not be polite.

Then 榴[lau4]槤[lin4] Durian said 你[nei5]屋[uk1]企[kei2]啲[di1]佈[bou3]置[ji3]好[hou2]靚[leng3]喎[wo3]!your home’s decorations are very pretty! The English was a direct translated line, 你[nei5]屋[uk1]企[kei2]your home, 屋[uk1]企[kei2] means home. 啲[di1] can mean some or ‘s possessive. 佈[bou3]置[ji3] means decorations. So here 你[nei5]屋[uk1]企[kei2]啲[di1]佈[bou3]置[ji3] your home’s decorations, 好[hou2]靚[leng3]喎[wo3]!meaning very pretty. 喎[wo3] is the emotion sound that ends the sentence here to express that you realized something, or to express slight surprise.

Dummy gave an emotion sound as a response. 哦[ngo4], 哦[ngo4] is used here to acknowledge. 揮[fai1]春[cheun1] I have mentioned last year, you can go back to Chinese New year episode 1 and 2 for review. But basically 揮[fai1]春[cheun1] are those red papers with words that you put up on the wall for Chinese New Year. The tradition started with people originally believing the colour red can ward off a certain monster that comes out during Chinese New Year. So Dummy was saying these 揮[fai1]春[cheun1] were distributed 派[paai3], 派[paai3]means to hand out for free. From downstairs 樓[lau4]下[ha6], 樓[lau4] means building, 下[ha6] means down or below. So downstairs, 樓[lau4]下[ha6].

Next line is easy 你[nei5]哋[dei6]想[seung2]唔[m4]想[seung2]要[yiu3]呀[a3]?you guys want or not want to have? Meaning do you guys want some? Then she said 我[ngo5]有[yau5]好[hou2]多[do1],I have a lot. 俾[bei2]啲[di1]你[nei5]哋[dei6]啦[la1]!give you guys some. 俾[bei2] means to give. 啲[di1] here in this context means some. 俾[bei2]啲[di1]你[nei5]哋[dei6]啦[la1]!give you guys some.

多[do1]謝[je6]你[nei5]先[sin1]啦[la1]。means thank you in advance. Different from thank you, 多[do1]謝[je6]你[nei5]先[sin1]啦[la1] just like in English Thank you in advance is like when you are refusing someone when they are offering something to you, or if the person will offer something to you in the future, that’s when you will use 多[do1]謝[je6]你[nei5]先[sin1]啦[la1].

Then Brother way said 我[ngo5]通[tung1]常[seung4]都[dou1]去[heui3]人[yan4]哋[dei6]屋[uk1]企[kei2]拜[baai3]年[nin4],I typically go to other people’s places to visit them for Chinese New Year. 通[tung1]常[seung4] means normally speaking or typically speaking, 去[heui3]人[yan4]哋[dei6]屋[uk1]企[kei2] meaning going to other people’s home. 人[yan4]哋[dei6] means other people. 拜[baai3]年[nin4] like I mentioned last episode, the activity of going to visiting people during Chinese New Year is called 拜[baai3]年[nin4].

Then he said 好[hou2]少[siu2]有[yau5]人[yan4]去[heui3]我[ngo5]屋[uk1]企[kei2]拜[baai3]年[nin4]嘅[ge3]。 rarely do people come to visit me. 好[hou2]少[siu2] literally means very less. Meaning not often, 有[yau5]人[yan4]去[heui3]我[ngo5]屋[uk1]企[kei2]拜[baai3]年[nin4]嘅[ge3] meaning have someone go to my home for 拜[baai3]年[nin4] to visit me during Chinese New Year.

So then Durian 榴[lau4]槤[lin4] said, 咁[gam3/gam2]我[ngo5]要[yiu3]啦[la1] Then I will take it. Then she said 留[lau4]返[faan1]下[ha6]一[yat1]年[nin4]都[dou1]好[hou2]呀[a3]。it’d be good to save it for next year. 留[lau4] this term, I just talked about it last time on the conversation episode. Last time I told you 留[lau4] as in 留[lau4]喺[hai2]屋[uk1]企[kei2] stay at home. To mean stay. But here 留[lau4] means to keep or to save. ]下[ha6]一[yat1]年[nin4] means next year. So 留[lau4]返[faan1]下[ha6]一[yat1]年[nin4] means to keep it or save it for next year. 都[dou1]好[hou2]呀[a3] would be nice, would be good.

But then Brother Way asked 但[daan6]係[hai6] but, 啲[di1]揮[fai1]春[cheun1] those red paper Fai Chun, 可[ho2]唔[m4]可[ho2]以[yi5] can or cannot, 下[ha6]一[yat1]年[nin4] next year, 再[joi3]用[yung6]再[joi3]貼[tip3] reuse and restick. 再[joi3] means again, 用[yung6] means to use, 貼[tip3] means to stick on, like for example a sticker is 貼[tip3] 紙[ji2], literally a sticky paper. So therefore 再[joi3]用[yung6] means reuse. There is a term 循[cheun4]環[waan4]再[joi3]用[yung6] meaning recycle and reuse, that you might hear sometimes in everyday conversations.

So brother way was wondering if they could be reused again and reput up again next year. Then he asked 會[wui5]唔[m4]會[wui5] will or not will, or will it be or will it not be, 好[hou2]唔[m4]吉[gat1]利[lei6] very unlucky ?吉[gat1]利[lei6] meaning luck or lucky is a term you will often hear during Chinese New Year, and possibly daily life if the person you are speaking to tends to believe in Chinese religious practices.

So then Dummy responded, 有[yau5]啲[di1]人[yan4]會[wui6/wui2/wui5] literally have some people will, 有[yau5]啲[di1]人[yan4]唔[m4]會[wui5], have some people will not. Meaning some people do, some people don’t, or some people will, some people won’t.

Then she continued 有[yau5]啲[di1]人[yan4] have some people, meaning there are people, 覺[gok3]得[dak1 think or feel 浪[long6]費[fai3] meaning wasteful. For example,

Do not waste water


Do not waste food


Then she said 咪[mai5/mai6/mi1]再[joi3]用[yung6]囉[lo1]。so they reuse. 咪[mai5/mai6/mi1] here means so or therefore or then. For example:

If you want to do it then do it! Don’t need to ask me.

你[nei5]想[seung2]做[jou6]咪[mai5/mai6/mi1]做[jou6]囉[lo1]! 唔[m4]駛[sai2]問[man6]我[ngo5]啦[la1]!

If you feel tired then take a rest!


Durian then said 唔[m4]緊[gan2]要[yiu3]啦[la1]never mind or no worries, 我[ngo5]都[dou1]唔[m4]迷[mai4]信[seun3]嘅[ge3]。I am not superstitious. 迷[mai4]信[seun3] means superstitious. 迷[mai4] can mean myth, 信[seun3] means to believe as a verb. So 迷[mai4]信[seun3] literally means myth believing, meaning superstitious. 環[waan4]保[bou2]啲[di1]呀[a3]嘛[ma1/ma4]。Be a little more environmentally friendly, 環[waan4]保[bou2] is short for 環[waan4]境[ging2]保[bou2]護[wu6] meaning literally environment protection, meaning environmentally friendly. 啲[di1] used after an adjective is used to compare, meaning the -er form or more something something, for example,


快啲 (Dummy PY: Fie Dee)

Then Durian realized she forgot something, 差[cha1]啲[di1]唔[m4]記[gei3]得[dak1]咗[jo2]!差[cha1]啲[di1] means almost, so for example, almost 100 marks 差[cha1]啲[di1]一[yat1]百[baak3]分[fan1] 唔[m4]記[gei3]得[dak1]咗[jo2] meaning forgot. 唔[m4]記[gei3]得[dak1] means do not remember, 咗[jo2] is the past tense indicator, so 唔[m4]記[gei3]得[dak1]咗[jo2] I forgot. Then she said 我[ngo5] I, 帶[daai3]咗[jo2]啲[di1], brought some , 年[nin4]糕[gou1] year cake, 蘿[lo4]蔔[baak6]糕[gou1],Turnip cake, 芋[wu6]頭[tau2]糕[gou1]Taro cake 俾[bei2]你[nei5]啊[a1] To you! 帶[daai3] means to bring, 糕[gou1] means cake. So say for example a regular cake is 蛋[daan6]糕[gou1], meaning egg cake, because regular traditional cakes usually require eggs in their recipes. So 年[nin4]糕[gou1] year cake, or other names are Chinese New Year cake or rice cake etc, which is usually in red or white, the texture is glutinous. 蘿[lo4]蔔[baak6]糕[gou1],Turnip cake I have talked about before, obviously made with turnips. 芋[wu6]頭[tau2]糕[gou1]Taro cake also very clearly made with Taro. The reason why during Chinese New Year we like to eat these 糕[gou1] these year cakes, turnip cake etc, is because 糕[gou1] cake is the homophone of 高[gou1] meaning tall, meaning they have the some sounds and pronunciation. 高[gou1] meaning tall is the metaphor for progression.

This is quite a typical scene you will see with Cantonese people. They like to give favours in return back and forth.

Dummy then responded, 哎[ai1]呀[a3] meaning like oops, 做[jou6]咩[me1] why, 咁[gam3/gam2], so 客[haak3]氣[hei3] polite呀[a3]!紮[jaat3]番[faan1]啲[di1]禮[lai5]俾[bei2]你[nei5]!紮[jaat3]禮[lai5] remember I mentioned last episode, 扎禮(Dummy PY: Jaat lai), usually just a small amount to compensate for the price of the gift. The reason why they do this is so then there is give and take and the loop will continue next year. So Dummy is saying, let me give you some red pockets in return for the gifts.

So then Durian responded 唔[m4]使[sai2]咁[gam3/gam2]客[haak3]氣[hei3]啦[la1]!meaning no need to be so polite. So normally 唔[m4]使[sai2]客[haak3]氣[hei3] is no need to be polite. But to emphasize it even further, you can add 咁[gam3/gam2] meaning so, 唔[m4]使[sai2]咁[gam3/gam2]客[haak3]氣[hei3] meaning no need to be so polite. She continued, 呢[ni1]啲[di1] these, 糕[gou1]點[dim2] cake items 係[hai6] is 我[ngo5] I 自[ji6]己[gei2] myself 整[jing2] make 㗎[ga3]咋[ja3] only!meaning I only made these cakes myself!

But Dummy refused, saying 唔[m4]好[hou2]嘅[ge3]!no good. 新[san1]年[nin4]。meaning New Year, here it means Chinese New Year. 利[lei6]利[lei6]是[si6]是[si6]吓[ha5]! Remember 利[lei6]是[si6] is the red pocket or packets married people hand out during Chinese New year, and it means lucky? So you can stack 利[lei6]是[si6] together to form 利[lei6]利[lei6]是[si6]是[si6] meaning lucky lucky, which is also one of the Chinese New Year Good Luck sayings.

So then Durian asked brother Way, 你[nei5] you 有[yau5]冇[mou5] have or not have 帶[daai3] brought 嘢[ye5] stuff 嚟[lai4]送[sung3]俾[bei2]人[yan4]呀[a3]? To give to people here means Dummy. Meaning did you bring anything to give to Dummy.

Why did she say that? She explained, 你[nei5]拜[baai3]年[nin4]兩[leung5]手[sau2]Fing Fing好[hou2]冇[mou2]禮[lai5]貌[maau6]㗎[ga3]!To visit people in Chinese New Year if both of your hands are empty, it’s very impolite! Again 拜[baai3]年[nin4] is when we go and visit friends and family during Chinese New year, this particular activity, 兩[leung5]手[sau2]Fing Fing is a very casual thing to say, meaning empty hands. 兩[leung5]手[sau2] Means two hands, Fing is the action of swinging, meaning the imagery of you swinging 2 hands, meaning nothing in your hands. A more formal and proper term would be 兩[leung5]手[sau2]空[hung1]空[hung1], 空[hung1] means empty. Also means empty handed. 好[hou2]冇[mou2]禮[lai5]貌[maau6]㗎[ga3]!very impolite, 禮[lai5]貌[maau6] is like manners or etiquette, so that is to say, very impolite, no manners.

So brother way apologized, 對[deui3]唔[m4]住[jyu6]呀[a3]!then he said 傳[chyun4]統[tung2] tradition 呢[ni1]啲[di1]嘢 these things, 我[ngo5] I 真[jan1]係[hai6] really 唔[m4]識[sik1] do not know how。

傳[chyun4]統[tung2] means tradition as a noun and as an adjective meaning traditional. For example,

Traditional Chinese New Year cake


So when he said 傳[chyun4]統[tung2] tradition 呢[ni1]啲[di1]嘢 these things, he is just generalizing things about traditions. For example,

Things about cooking I really do not know.


So then Dummy responded 唔[m4]緊[gan2]要[yiu3]! no worries or never mind, then she quoted a saying 不[bat1]知[ji1]者[je2]不[bat1]罪[jeui6]。, literally not know person not guilty, meaning the person who doesn’t know is not guilty. So that is to say, if you never knew before, that’s alright. So now that brother Way knows, next time he won’t be able to use the same excuse.

Perhaps feeling a little awkward, brother way changed the subject, he asked, 個[go3]盒[hap6/hap2] the box 入[yap6]邊[bin1] inside 呢[ni1]啲[di1] these 叫[giu3]咩[me1]名[meng2]啊[a1] called what name?meaning what are these things inside this box called? 盒[hap6/hap2] means a box or container.

Dummy explained 呢[ni1]個[go3] this one 係[hai6] is 全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2] the year box. 全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2] the year box is usually the box you see only during Chinese New Year and it usually contains little snacks that we eat during Chinese New Year. Dummy explained, 通[tung1]常[seung4] typically speaking 入[yap6]邊[bin1] inside 有[yau5] have 糖[tong4/tong2]蓮[lin4]子[ji2] sugar lotus seeds,瓜[gwa1]子[ji2] melon seeds,有[yau5]啲[di1] have some 糖[tong4/tong2] candy 咁[gam3/gam2]囉[lo1] like that。 Again 通[tung1]常[seung4] means normally speaking or typically speaking, 糖[tong4/tong2]蓮[lin4]子[ji2] sugar lotus seeds, are lotus seeds coated with sugar, 瓜[gwa1]子[ji2] melon seeds, many different kinds, 糖[tong4/tong2] candy. Note that 糖[tong4/tong2] candy and 糖[tong4/tong2] in 糖[tong4/tong2]蓮[lin4]子[ji2] sugar lotus seeds are the same character, but the pronunciation is different because 糖[tong4/tong2] is candy, 糖[tong4/tong2] is sugar, don’t mess them up and confuse other people.

Again 通[tung1]常[seung4] means normally speaking or typically speaking, 糖[tong4/tong2]蓮[lin4]子[ji2] sugar lotus seeds, are lotus seeds coated with sugar, 瓜[gwa1]子[ji2] melon seeds, many different kinds, 糖[tong4/tong2] candy. Note that 糖[tong4/tong2] candy and 糖[tong4/tong2] in 糖[tong4/tong2]蓮[lin4]子[ji2] sugar lotus seeds are the same character, but the pronunciation is different because 糖[tong4/tong2] is candy, 糖[tong4/tong2] is sugar, don’t mess them up and confuse other people.

Brother Way continued asking, 呢[ni1]隻[jek3] This one 有[yau5] have 白[baak6]兔[tou3]仔[jai2] a white rabbit 嘅[ge3] ‘s possessive 糖[tong4/tong2] candy,meaning this candy that has a white rabbit on it, 白[baak6]兔[tou3]仔[jai2] is a cute way of saying a white rabbit, the non cute way you can say 白[baak6]兔[tou3], white rabbit. Non white rabbits are called 兔[tou3]仔[jai2]. He continued, 我[ngo5] I 次[chi3]次[chi3] every time 去[heui3] go 拜[baai3]年[nin4] visit friends and family during Chinese New Year 都[dou1] also 見[gin3]到[dou2] see it 㗎[ga3]。meaning Every time I go visiting family and friends during Chinese New Year I see this. 次[chi3]次[chi3] means every time. 次[chi3] means one time, like once, so 次[chi3]次[chi3] is everytime.

So Durian explained 呢[ni1]隻[jek3]this one 叫[giu3] is called 白[baak6]兔[tou3]White rabbit 糖[tong4/tong2] Candy 呀[a3]。Then she added saying 我[ngo5]個[go3]女[neui5] My daughter 好[hou2]鍾[jung1]意[yi3] like it very much 食[sik6] to eat㗎[ga3]。 Note that in Cantonese we will say 好[hou2]鍾[jung1]意[yi3] literally very like, instead of like it very much. So therefore, Cantonese people when speaking in English, sometimes they will make mistakes like “I very like this food.”

So then Dummy invited them to grab a couple home, 攞[lo2]幾[gei2]粒[lap1]返[faan1]去[heui3]啦[la1], 攞[lo2] means to take or to grab, 幾[gei2]粒[lap1] a few, 幾[gei2] means a few or quite, 粒[lap1] is the unit classifier for objects that are small. 返[faan1]去[heui3] means to go back. So literally grab a couple to return. Then she said 係[hai6]全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2]攞[lo2]嘢[ye5]食[sik6]叫[giu3]做[jou6]找[jaau2]銀[ngan4/ngan2] 全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2] again is the year box you will see in Chinese New Year, she explained, 攞[lo2] getting or grabbing, 嘢[ye5]食[sik6] meaning food, from the year box 全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2] is called 找[jaau2]銀[ngan4/ngan2] literally grabbing silver. Last year I explained this term, The act of grabbing food from the year box 全[chyun4]盒[hap6/hap2], is called 找[jaau2]銀[ngan4/ngan2] (grabbing silver). Of course you are not really grabbing silver, they are just snacks, it is a symbolic act that people believe will bring you wealth in the coming year.

Then Dummy added, 好[hou2]好[hou2]意[yi3]頭[tau4]㗎[ga3]。意[yi3]頭[tau4] basically means luck, or otherwise, good omen. So meaning very lucky!

So hearing that Durain responded, 咁[gam3/gam2]我[ngo5]唔[m4]客[haak3]氣[hei3]啦[la1]。 literally so then I am not going to be polite. So meaning I am going to dig in, not holding back.

Literally I also grab some first.

The topic has now been changed, Dummy then asked them, 咁[gam3/gam2] so then, 你[nei5]哋[dei6] you guys 農[nung4]曆[lik6]新[san1]年[nin4] lunar Chinese New Year 有[yau5]咩[me1]搞[gaau2]啊[a1] what is there to do? 農[nung4]曆[lik6]新[san1]年[nin4] is the lunar new year, for short 新[san1]年[nin4], new year. 有[yau5]咩[me1]攪[gaau2]呀[a3]?I mentioned last time in that New Year conversation episode, it means what is there to do? It has the same meaning as 有[yau5]咩[me1]做[jou6]呀[a3]?Or 有[yau5]咩[me1]整[jing2]呀[a3]?same thing what is there to do? But 有[yau5]咩[me1]攪[gaau2]呀[a3]?is more casual. The word 攪[gaau2] actually means to stir, but nowadays modern day casual meaning it means to do or to make.

Then Brother Way responded, 平[ping4]時[si4]新[san1]年[nin4]我[ngo5]會[wui6/wui2/wui5]返[faan1]鄉[heung1]下[ha2]嘅[ge3],Normally during Chinese New Year I would return to my hometown. 平[ping4]時[si4] just like 通[tung1]常[seung4] means normally speaking or typically speaking, no particular difference in terms of the 2 terms. 鄉[heung1]下[ha2] is like your hometown, another term can be 家[ga1]鄉[heung1] also hometown but 家[ga1]鄉[heung1] is slightly more formal. He continued saying 但[daan6]係[hai6] but 今[gam1]年[nin4]this year 冇[mou5]得[dak1]去[heui3] cannot go。

So Dummy said 咁[gam3/gam2]都[dou1]好[hou2]呀[a3] literally so that is also good. Meaning it’s ok, it’s alright. Then she continued, 而[yi4]家[ga1]Now 你[nei5] you 有[yau5]have 機[gei1]會[wui6] opportunity 上[seung5]嚟[lai4]come up 我[ngo5]屋[uk1]企[kei2] my home 拜[baai3]下[ha6]年[nin2] to visit during Chinese New Year。 Meaning now, you have this opportunity to come visit me at my place during Chinese New Year. 機[gei1]會[wui6] means opportunity or chance.

So Durian chimed in 我[ngo5] I 一[yat1]陣[jan6] later on 呢[ni1] emotion sound to pause 仲[jung6] still 要[yiu3] need to 去[heui3] go 拜[baai3]年[nin4] visit friends and family during Chinese New Year, 一[yat1]陣[jan6] means a while, or later. For example,

hold on for a moment,


Literally wait a while.

Then she added 但[daan6]係[hai6] but 聽[ting1]日[yat6] tomorrow 我[ngo5] I 就[jau6]約[yeuk3]咗[jo2] have made an appointment or arranged to touch base 啲[di1] some 朋[pang4]友[yau5] friends 嚟[lai4] to come 我[ngo5]屋[uk1]企[kei2]my home 打[da2]麻[ma4]雀[jeuk2] play Mahjong。

約[yeuk3] is quite an interesting word, it can mean to book, to make an appointment or to arrange to touch base.

For example,

an appointment


預[yu6] means before or pre. So meaning pre arranged meeting for 預[yu6]約[yeuk3]

A Date


Meaning arrange to meet literally. It really means a date.

朋[pang4]友[yau5] very easy is friends. 打[da2]麻[ma4]雀[jeuk2] means to play Mahjong. Do you know what Mahjong is? I am thinking to talk about Mahjong next week. Mahjong is a game we play as a Chinese ethnic group, but I heard from a Jewish friend, Mahjong is also a popular game amongst themselves as well. Not sure if the play set itself looks the same though. I will talk about it more next time.

Dummy was surprised by what Durain said, she responded with 哦[ngo4]!to indicate slight surprise. She continued, 原[yun4]來[loi4] turned out/ originally 榴[lau4]槤[lin4] Durian 你[nei5] you 識[sik1]know how to 打[da2]麻[ma4]雀[jeuk2] play Mahjong㗎[ga3]?

原[yun4]來[loi4] is a little harder to explain. 原[yun4]來[loi4] can vaguely mean “turn out”. It’s like when you realized the truth, or realized what something is supposed to be, then you can say 原來 (Dummy PY: Yuen Loy) then the fact. So Dummy realized that Durian knows how to play Mahjong, so she asked brother way, 你[nei5]識[sik1]唔[m4]識[sik1]呀[a3]? You know how to or not know how to? Meaning do you know how to play.

He doesn't know how.

So Dummy finally suggested, 我[ngo5]哋[dei6] We 下[ha6]次[chi3] Next time 湊[chau3]夠[gau3] gather enough 四[sei3]隻[jek3]腳[geuk3] 4 legs, The direct translation is weird, doesn't make any sense. That’s why again I stress my job as an interpreter is so important because if you try translating in Google translate, all you will get is gibberish you can’t understand. Anyone who needs an interpreter out there who is listening, you know where to find me. Here 湊[chau3]夠[gau3] literally means gather enough, or pool enough, pool as in like car pooling kind of pool, meaning if they can find or have, 四[sei3]隻[jek3]腳[geuk3] literally means 4 legs. But it is a metaphor, for 4 people. In a Mahjong game, you will need 4 people to play. Each seat and each person is referred to as 腳[geuk3] meaning leg literally, but really it means a person. So Dummy is saying, when we can find 4 people next time,

我[ngo5] I 同[tung4] and 榴[lau4]槤[lin4] Durian 教[gaau3] Teach 你[nei5] you 打[da2]麻[ma4]雀[jeuk2] play mahjong啦[la1]! 教[gaau3] means to teach. So the whole sentence is Durian and I will teach you how to play!

So Brother Way said 好[hou2]呀[a3]!meaning ok or sounds good or meaning of that kind.