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Cultural Imperialism; Fried Chicken Takes Over China
Ellen’s at Night, Shepherd’s Delight?
Importing la Vie Française to Nanjing
The Love Story of a Chinese Century: Sanmao and Hexi
Cultural Imperialism; Fried Chicken Takes Over China Fried chicken and beer is now all the rage in China; and it’s all because of the Koreans. Admittedly, both the food and the beverage have been around for a while. However, pairing the two during meetings with friends is now the in-thing to do after a South Korean TV drama has created an unprecedented craze about the combo that is now entering into Chinese mainstream culture. Read the Full Story
Ellen’s at Night, Shepherd’s Delight? Ellen’s at night is one of those infamous places many tend to steer clear of, but what about Ellen’s by day? It felt strange disembarking walking into a place that looked more like a ‘pirates cove’ than a bar/restaurant; in tune with its reputation for the rough and rowdy after 10 pm. Read the Full Story
Importing la Vie Française to Nanjing Nine years ago Hu Ya opened up the first French restaurant in Nanjing; now the owner of one of Nanjing’s most longstanding establishments is venturing into the bar scene. On the checklist of foreign cuisine in Nanjing Les 5 Sens is undoubtedly a top contender. Opened in 2005 by two Chinese ladies and a French chef it has been a steady success. Read the Full Story
The Love Story of a Chinese Century: Sanmao and Hexi Hardly a Nanjinger does not know the tragic love story of Sanmao and Hexi. The Chinese writer, who partly grew up in Nanjing, would have been 71 this month. Local students are currently bringing her story to the stage.  Read the Full Story

Hello Nanjing - The premier expat social network for pleasant living in Nanjing Jiangsu, China

Nanjing Spring festival guide 2011

Spring Festival 2011 takes place from Wed. Feb. 2nd to Tues. Feb. 8th.

For those working standard office hours, there are two 'make-up' days of extra work – on Sun. Jan. 30th, and on Sat. Feb. 12th.

Spring Festival is the most important holiday of the year in China. Typically, at this time people celebrate the past year and pray for a fortuitous new year. This is also a time for families to gather.

Thus, in a country of 1.3 billion people, you can be sure that buses and trains will be packed – particulary at the start and end of the holiday period.

Limited services

During the holiday, most government officials will be off, although key government positions will be maintained, such as police stations, TV stations, etc.

Regarding non-governmental businesses, you can be sure that in most cases, they will be closed from Feb. 2nd to Feb. 8th.

{tab=Restaurants} Most small restaurants will be closed for at least 7 days. If you happen to live near a student area (for example near Nanjing University or the Nanjing Arts Institute, you can expect the restaurants in the area to adhere to students’ schedules, meaning a closing period of at least 20 days. {tab=Local markets} Most local markets will also be closed, since farmers have a stronger mindset to return home at this time.

Fortunately, there are 80 markets that will remain open in the downtown area, mainly. If you’re desperate, head towards Xinjiekou and put on your walking shoes. {tab=Hospitals} Hospitals will have less doctors and nurses on duty, and most pharmacies will also be closed for at least 7 days. In case of an emergency, here is a list of hospitals that had emergency staff on duty during the holiday period last year – thus good bets for this year, for those who need help. {tab=Transportation} Taxi drivers will also be working less hours, so you can expect cabs to be sparse.

As for buses, they will keep their normal schedule (from 5-6 am to 10-11pm). {tab=Banks} Banks and post offices will be closed for the entire holiday. {tab=Hellonanjing}The HN team will be in Suzhou doing some non-Nanjing-related stuff, meaning less updates from us until around Feb. 12th.  {/tabs}

What's still open

Most major supermarkets (such as Carrefour and Wal-Mart) will operate on normal opening hours, while all of the fast food places will remain open, including Burger King, McDonald’s, KFC, etc. If you need some fast food delivery, check out our fast food delivery section in the directory.

As for some of the bigger chain restaurants not located inside shopping mall food courts, it depends. Some will open on the 2nd and 3rd, but many of these will cater to family gatherings only – if you come with a small group, expect higher prices and less attentive service.

Expat establishments

The only two venues we have received word that will close during the holidays are Secco and My Place. EDIT: Secco is now open.

Here's a sampling of some venues that will remain open:
  • Castle Bar: open all year round from 20:00 to late, 7 days a week
  • Blue Marlin: open from 10:00am to 2:30am every day
  • Blue Sky: open from 11:00am to 2:00am every day
  • Finnegans Wake: open from 10:30am till late every day
  • 61 House: open from 10:00 till late, with daily food & drink specials, big-screen movies and big-screen Nintendo Wii games available by request.
  • Jimmy’s: open from 18:00 till late, possibility of a BBQ night or two lingers...
  • Mazzo: open from 20:00 to 4:00 every day
  • Ellen's: open from 9:00 till late with killer specials every day (free beer, cheap plonk, etc)

Survival tips

  • Food: if you're staying in town, stock up at a major supermarket with enough food to last you a week.
  • Medicine: If you're a queasy type, buy some basic medicines before the pharmacies close. Handy: Huang Lian Su for diarrhea (黄连素), Ban Lan Gen (板蓝根) and Xiao Chai Hu for fever (小柴胡)
  • Meetups: post up in the HN social forum if you're looking to hang out with like-minded folk.

Attractions around town

Confucius Temple: the Qinhuai International Lantern Festival Lantern Festival takes place from Jan. 31st until Feb. 20th. The theme this year is "Heaven seen through the light of wisdom". Apart from traditional lighting of lanterns, the area around the Ming City Wall will have a light exhibition focusing on Southeast Asian cultures with a "Green Olympics" theme thrown in for good measure. For a recap of last year's festival, check out the article Lantern Festival: the last word on the Spring Festival.

Xuanwu Lake Park: from Feb. 2nd to 17th, Xuanwu Lake Park will host a "rabbit festival" with a lightshow along the wall showing two 11-meter cartoon rabbits interacting.

Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum: too early for plum blossoms? According to experts, flowering will begin in early February this year, a nice preview, perhaps, for the official Plum Blossom Festival in March.

Hongshan Forest Zoo: from Jan. 28th until Feb. 8th, the zoo will hold a "Spring Rabbit Lunar New Year Festival" with lots of dudes dressed up like rabbits, the showing of a "bunny sitcom" from Feb. 4th to 8th (10am, 11:30, 2pm in the zoo's central square) and a "Pro rabbit photo station where families can get some memorable snaps for a fee.

Wanda Plaza: for those in the Olympic Stadium area, the Jianye District of Culture and Tourism Bureau will host a bunch of art performances and fashion shows on Feb. 2nd, 4th, 9th, and 17th.

– credit to Longhoo.net for the above event information

Staying safe

HelloNanjing wishes everyone a Happy Year of the Rabbit, and we also hope that everyone stays safe.

Last year, hospitals reported zero drunk cases, although that has already been surpassed this year. As for holiday injuries last year, HN reported that 45 people suffered injuries after slipping on ice, while four children suffered firecracker injuries, including one 7-year-old who reached for a firecracker just as it detonated.

This year, stay safe, relax, and enjoy your holiday. Happy New Year!

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