The YAPPY BUNCH raided Binondo recently to celebrate CHINESE NEW YEAR for 2016!
And this time, we are welcoming THE YEAR OF THE MONKEY!!!
We woke up early to drive out to Binondo and we were all excited and lazy.
Well, the Chinese Adonis and I were excited.
The little lords were, as usual, LAZY. He he he he he he he!
Don't fret Mati and Andrei. This is already our 5th year in doing this Chinese New Year Tradition and let me assure you that there will be MORE to come!
BWA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!
The lucky colors for THE YEAR OF THE MONKEY were White, Blue, and Gold so we all rummaged our cabinets to wear the cool shades!
The color of the day for us was blue and we all wore matching hues!
As for the ever rebellious Andrei, he got a white shirt with thin lines of blue. No surprise there. He always wants to be different from us.
Check us out 5 years ago! Here, everybody was feeling clean and green!!! He he he he he!
Augh! I've been rhyming kanina pa!!!!
In the previous years, we would park in Manila Cathedral and ride "kalesas" or sidecars to get to BINONDO.
This time, we parked by the bridge near the little side eateries. A very kind old couple said it was so fine to park in front of them and they will look after it.
And we're walking all the way!
Of course, we still plan to make several stops for photo ops! He he he he he!
It's going to be a KUNG HEI FAT CHOI day everybody!
We officially started our CHINESE NEW YEAR CELEBRATION by crossing Jone's Bridge!
I don't normally like walking but seeing the bumper to bumper traffic heading towards Binondo, going on foot WILL be the only way to travel!
Let's c'mown Andrei!
It may not be so obvious in the pictures but the sun was really joining in our celebration!
And we see this familiar and beautiful Friendship Arc!
And finally we're in Chinatown!
We immediately hear firetrucks blaring its sirens to announce their crossing.
And we also see a lonely float! He he he he he!
There is still a bit of walk going to Ongpin, the main party street for that day in Binondo. In order to avoid the crowds, we used several detours.
We almost jumped when suddenly we heard firecrackers at one side.
I think the Chinese Adonis let out a small "AHAHAAAY!"
Yeesh! Check out the traffic jam!
I wonder what person in his right mind would dare bring a car during this day?
While we were walking, we saw my cousin Kuya Ariel!!!!
We knew that we were near Ongpin when we saw these familiar signs.
Yup! That's for ENG BEE TIN! The most popular store selling Chinese delicacies in Binondo. Check out the lines! That just gets longer every year!
OH the humanity inside!
Wohooo! We finally get to Binondo Church! This marks the start of our trek along Ongpin st!
When we get to Binondo Church, it also signifies that it's time for a stopover to get some snacks for us.
Yep! We're eating immediately!!!
There are several carts that offer hot street foods that are cheap and tasty.
We already ate breakfast but the Chinese Adonis was curious to snack on some buttered corn!
Of course, my little foodie followed suit and got his own. A cup of buttered corn only costs P10.00 each!
I bet somebody is so tempted to try the squid balls!
As for me, I'm deciding whether or not to get a jumbo hotdog (kaya mo ba to).
After filling ourselves up with street food, it's time to FINALLY raid Ongpin!
Now, where should we start squeezing ourselves in?
It's always a walk-a-party when it's CHINESE NEW YEAR in BINONDO! No matter how crazy and noisy it gets, it's fun to see the familiar. Here are some of the usual sights we see in Ongpin that makes us love the celebration of CHINESE NEW YEAR more!
Tikoy, more tikoy, and SOME MORE tikoy!
Colorful balloons of every design!
Andrei is somehow taking pity on these tied-up puppies.
... and a scalp! He he he he he!
During the CHINESE NEW YEAR celebration, families would always have round fruits in their table to invite prosperity!
Walis Tambo guy!
Beads for good luck!
Mati saw another stall offering more designs.
Look! It's one more ENG BEE TIN store and it's still packed!
Is ENG BEE TIN the Starbucks of Chinatown Manila????
I also saw clothes for Sto. Nino.
Have you seen my lucky charms?
Maybe these Lucky figurines got them! He he he he he!
Colored Quail Chicks!
And also the chickity chicks!
I"m thankful that Andrei is not crazy about these baby birds anymore.
More round fuits!
Plants that are... fluffy?
There were also Chinese Dragon wannabes.... Ha ha ha ha ha! So weird!
Some people may find the walk in Ongpin during CHINESE NEW YEAR terrifying because of the crowds. But the Chinese Adonis and I treat it as an adventure.
As for the little lords, they would initially give the usual whine at the start of the trip, but when we get there, their eyes would be so preoccupied with curious sights that they forget about their hissy fits before.
After a bit of walking, we see the Welcome Arch of Manila Chinatown!
This arch also marks the walkway through the Bridge of Friendship!
And we see more waves of people!
But of course, that didn't dampen our spirits! It will still be an adventure!
Si Mati labas tiyan. Ha ha ha ha ha ha!
While walking, we saw another long and noisy dragon.
Every year we pass by this place to pay respects to the drug store. Now it's not really a religious place or there's no martyr inside. But we cannot forget the time when the crowds got so crazy in Ongpin 5 years ago. I took the little lords here and the very friendly staff said Mati and Andrei could stay inside a bit until the pandemonium died down.
I remember too that the ladies said the reason they called Mati and Andrei was because they found the two so cute! Awwwwww!!!
E, what about the mommy and daddy??? Kidding!
Those ladies were so nice! Too bad I don't remember their faces anymore. But we still pass by for a honorary picture with this store. He he he he he he!
Wohoo! We see Ongpin!
Normally we go straight along the streets of Ongpin. But the Chinese Adonis really wanted to eat at this Maki place in the quieter corners of Binondo.
Ngiii! Check out the lines of other restaurants!
Ahhhh! Finally! The sticky noodles that Yub has been craving for.
Blogpost soon to follow!
We got so fat and happy with our Chinese lunch that we felt braver in attacking Ongpin again!
Hmmm... I think we're lost... He he he he he he!
We just followed the noise of banging drums and firecrackers.
And before we know it, we're back in Ongpin!
There, we saw a very pretty face selling siomai in front of their store.
It's Mareng Joan!!!!
It was great seeing her and THE FOOD ALPHABET!!! Too bad I wasn't able to see my godson Sky!!!
But we did see the coffee/hot chocolate machine that the little lords played with two years ago. He he he he he!
And it's time to go back and brave the human traffic!
We then caught sight of the Ongpin North Bridge.
The arch had an inscription to "Support New Society" which was a strong reminder from the time it was built for the people in Chinatown.
And it's time to walk some more!
The Chinese Adonis felt the need for "refueling" and bought some cotton candy.
Little Andrei saw some chicks being sold at the side streets. I thought "Oh no. He's back to his old habits again."
But really, he just wanted to show me how cute they were and that he didn't plan on buying it.
He WAS willing to shell out his allowance money for this bubble gun.
For some reason I was so happy with how he spared the chickity chicks that I told him I'll pay for the gun.
And it was time to head back!
We were about to enter a side street when the roads were blocked for some parade.
The little lords were curious and wanted to see it.
As it turned out, it was a parade of the Government Officials.
Oh we'll definitely look for ways to go.
I forgot that i don't have any take home for my family. So I got some tikoy!
As for the Yub, he snacked (again) on some fishballs.
Yup! CHINATOWN is indeed his candyland!
While on our way back, we saw these gay drummers "serenading" two old ladies in a building. They gave the group some cash afterwards.
While walking, we saw one more dragon.
And a parade!
Andrei saw a mascot from the parade and got so excited. He was acting like a little child and was so cute!
Check out his happy face admiring the mascot from the parade.
Time went by so fast that my boy is not a baby anymore. He would usually ask about girls, naughty stuff, and things he plan to do when he grows up. That's why I value the times when he gets giddy like the little boy that he is. I know that it is only a matter of time when the sight of a mascot will just bore him unlike years before when he flashed that eager smile in the picture.
Egad I'm tearing up. :(
It's time to cross the bridge again! We had so much fun BINONDO!!!
I was happy that the little lords did not complain as much as before. In fact, I didn't hear them say something nasty or ask when it's time to go home! Hopefully they are now enjoying our yearly CHINESE NEW YEAR habit even for just a bit. He he he he he he he!
When we got back to the car, we gave one box of tikoy to the owners of the food stall where we parked our car. The Lolo and Lola were very kind and really offered the space. They even said they would take care of it.
I was so touched by their kindness! Andrei made mano po to both of them.
Thank you Lolo and Lola! At least, we didn't have to park all the way in Manila Cathedral. Your kindness was such a big help. God bless you both always!
Even if we didn't park in Manila Cathedral like before, we felt that we should still pass by for pictures.
It is then we discovered that they do not allow parking in the old church anymore. All cars will be towed should there be a very stubborn driver. He he he he he he!
Good thing though that there was a traffic attendant who allowed us to park for a while to take pictures. Naks! There is always kindness talaga whenever you need it!
Yep! Good thing too because these shots will be something we'll recreate every year. Ha ha ha ha ha!
It was great that we were able to do our yearly tradition of going to BINONDO to celebrate the CHINESE NEW YEAR. Hopefully, it is really something we will do with the boys even if they're old already and able to zoink our dimsum plates.
Wait a minute.... Stay at home na lang kaya kayo???
Kidding!!!!! Here's to more different kinds of family fun!
LET'S ROCK THIS YEAR OF THE MONKEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
KUNG HEI FAT CHOI!!!!!!!!!!!!!