Red envelope

This is a picture of a Hongbao.
This is a picture of a Hongbao.

I have been privileged to know about my culture and traditions all my life. I know that some Asian people don’t know about their traditions and cultures because many families lose their traditions over time or forget them as they immigrate to their new home. This is part of why I consider myself lucky and I am thankful that I still know about my family’s traditions. In the mid 70’s, my Chinese grandparents fled from Vietnam to America with 6 kids and everyone my grandpa had helped save leaving behind family and their home to escape communism. They had to live in Malaysia for a period of time, they did not know the dangers of this at the time, but they were playing and using the bathroom in the same place. My mom got really sick and so my grandma had to sell her wedding ring for some apples to help my mom get better. Even through this, they did not forget the traditions they used when they were in Vietnam and China. One of the traditions was the red envelope. I typically get the red envelope on my birthday, Chinese New Year, or any other special occasion. The money that I get inside the envelope is nice, but I think the envelope itself is special because I see it as a message from my loved ones. Some of them wish you prosperity, health, luck, happy new year, and more. When I was little, sometimes I wished that I had lighter hair or lighter eyes. Now, aspects from my culture such as the red envelope assures me that dark hair and eyes are just as nice.

Place(s): Vietnam, China, America

– C

Relationship:  unknown unknown