According to the Chinese zodiac, it is now officially the Year of the Dragon. What can we expect in the future as we transition from the Rabbit? Astrologers predict that the next year will hold good luck, as the dragon is the most auspicious and powerful of the signs, and an increase in the fertility rate. Those born in this year are said to be intelligent, energetic, extroverted, often conceited, and quick to lose their temper when provoked.
Although considered to bring good fortune, some believe that 2012 will hold more international conflict, citing the relationships between earth and water elements. The powerful yang of water might auger a natural disaster or the human struggles toward political equality. The water sign also represents charity and generosity, which hopefully could signal for a positive transformation of economic and societal institutions.
While there will be fighting and strife in the days ahead, the elements are not as much in opposition as in the past several years. From nature, we can forecast possible viral epidemics, and powerful disasters such as earthquakes and floods. Sadly, experts say that there are fewer angels of mercy to aid in what could be higher death tolls than normal. Fortunately, there should be an improvement in environmental protections and recovery from past human-made catastrophes like oil spills and and nuclear meltdowns.
Want to celebrate the Year of the Dragon here on the coast?
-Head to San Francisco, where 6,000 participants, 22 floats, marching bands, lion dancers, and an arsenal of firecrackers will dazzle your senses and help usher in good fortune and scare away the negative spirits of the past. The parade is held on February 11, and is one of the largest celebrations held outside of Asia. There is also a city-wide treasure hunt that takes seekers on a romp through San Francisco’s neighborhoods and rewards them with fun, prizes, and a healthy workout.
-San Luis Obispo locals can watch the Cal Poly Lion Dance Team perform around the county this month. Witness a cultural tradition and see the amazing strength and acrobatic skill required to bring these creatures to life! (Visit their website for a performance schedule.) If cavorting lions are not enough to impress you, on January 25 the Peking Acrobats challenge gravity at the Clark Performing Arts Center in Arroyo Grande. Tickets range from $45-55.
-Cal Poly will be hosting a dinner on January 28, where Wushu Taichi masters Liu Yu and Norm Petredean accompanied by students will give a demonstration. This graceful martial art will inspire serenity, strength, and promote a healthy flow of qi that will help balance and prepare you for the upcoming year.
Break out the red envelopes, make some mooncakes, and have a great Year of the Dragon!