The Year of the Tiger
Posted by jonathanfryer on Tuesday, 16th February, 2010
The Banqueting House in Whitehall was filled with several hundred guests this evening, celebrating the Chinese New Year — of the Tiger. That happens to be my year, as I was born in 1950, so I could hardly fail to be charmed by the comments of Sarah Wu, the indefatigible Director-General of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, who declared that ‘The tiger symbolises bravery, energy and competititveness. People born in the Year of the Tiger are said to make audacious and passionate leaders, but they are also sensitive, given to deep thinking, and capable of great sympathy. They embrace the unpredictable and love a challenge because they know they’ll always land on their feet.’ I don’t know about that last bit, about always landing on one’s feet, but most of the rest seems pretty true to my character/aspiration, as indeed do many of the supposed characteristics of Gemini, my Western birth sign. I wonder if other people feel equally at home in their Chinese and Western astrological skins? Anyway, this year’s certainly going to be one in which China itself has to weigh up how it is doing newly centre-stage in world politics — and for the rest of the world, it will be one in which they have to decide how to relate to China.