Chinese New Years  Jan 25, 12 DRAGON– Third Day (Chikou/Chigau):


Through the 15 days of this New Years’ of the Dragon, I am going to write of my life in Hong Kong and the relationship between my:

1)   urban ( city girl )and rural ( outback girl) persona,

2)   humanitarian/aid/development work and corporate work,

3)   career focus: Social services(education, health, social welfare),

4)   career focus: Business(corporate consulting, communications, management)

Today, the third day of the Lunur New Years people stay closer to home only normally traveling to the temple of wealth. It’s a day to have ones fortune told.  It’s a day of expecting and hoping for  the best.

For me, I have lived my life expecting the best. Even in the worst periods of my life, my optimism has kept me going. And, I yet I must admit I have walked into the temple to have my fortune told many  times. Not just in Hong Kong during Spring Festival, but on a whim, or on advice of Chinese friends, or as a planned special event.

My first experience with the temple of wealth was not in Hong Kong but in Taiwan in 1981.  I was given a book called the I-Ching by my Chinese speaking western best friend,  Kathy.  And, I was taught about CHANGE.  Like the seasons ,  the life of a person is a change process. And, the I-Ching is the book that helps to tell the story, the future of ones life.  And, at the temple of wealth the joy sticks or coins, a symbol of the I-Ching are used to determine ones future.


And for the fun of it, in celebration of  the day, since I am not near a temple at this time,  I have asked my question and  thrown the coins online.

My answer is :

Hexagram 33 Tun - Retreat

Cast Hexagram:

33 – Thirty-Three

Tun / Retreat

The tranquil Mountain towers overhead, yet remains this side of Heaven:
The Superior Person avoids the petty and superficial by keeping shallow men at a distance, not in anger but with dignity.

Such a retreat sweeps the path clear to Success.
Occupy yourself with minute detail.


Retreat in this instance is not a desperate flight in disarray, but a conscious choice to distance yourself from forces that would rob you of your peace.
It is not a surrender, but a regrouping.
Retreat from this conflict is actually an advance toward your own center.
You move toward balance, and thus a much stronger position.

Cast Hexagram:


Hexagram 33
Tun – Retreat


above: Ch’ien / The Creative, Heaven


below: Kên / Keeping Still, Mountain

Very simply:  This symbol states, my goal in my life is to…..

RETREAT. Success.
In what is small, perseverance furthers.


In Hong Kong (unlike my expat experience in Taiwan and China), Spring Festival provides foreigners the time to escape from their fast and furious lifestyle. They can stay in their homes or travel outside the country.  No local host national will be disappointed that “the foreign devil, the gweilo” has  disappeared from the family and nations festivities. That because, Hong Kong is a place of informality, of a rushed urban city lifestyle, of apartments more like compartments closed to neighbors.

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