Red lanterns adorned the plaza. Dragons, dancing ladies in red, stalls and fun rides all around. The smell of food whiffed across the air. Clanging and banging of drums, firecrackers exploding. Northbridge was well and truly alive for the Chinese New Year Fair 2021. While the Year of the Ox officially began on February 12, the fair was held on February 14.
It was my first time at the carnival and I met with a group of photographers who were there to capture the occasion. My attention was immediately drawn to the gigantic ox in the centre of the precinct. Given that the photographers arrived early, we decided to wander around the many stalls and surrounding streets until the official celebrations started.
We returned to the main area just in time for the opening ceremony, where crowds had gathered to witness the firecrackers, dancers, drummers and dragons. Even the State Premier Mark McGowan was there in a suit and tie. That's what another photographer told me anyway. Being a somewhat shorter person, my view was obscured by the taller people all around. However, I did find a small space where I got a glimpse of the crowd. Maybe next year I can get some stilts. There were actually some performers on stilts so I’d blend in perfectly.
By the time the opening ceremony finished, I had walked around a lot and lost the other photographers. It was a very hot and humid day and I could sense myself sizzling like a barbecued Peking Duck. Despite the heat, I continued to explore.
Eventually I did find one of the other photographers. He was sweating so profusely, I thought he had gone swimming. YIKES! It really was THAT humid. Thankfully we did drink plenty of water. After a few hours though, we decided to call it a day.
Overall, the Chinese New Year Fair 2021 was a fun experience and I’ll be back. Well done to the organisers, they did a great job of putting it all together, particularly given the challenges of COVID. Wishing everyone a Happy Chinese New Year 2021, let’s hope that the Year of the Ox brings good fortune, prosperity and joy.