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currently: eating Maltesers.

On Friday night, Boyfriend and I went to the first night of the Auckland Lantern Festival at Albert Park. Ever since we've started dating, we've always attended the Lantern Festival together. We eat, we photograph and we walk around the lanterns. And this year, it was no different.

This year's opening didn't feel as crazy packed as it has been in previous years, but then again it was a Friday night. Boyfriend and I got a small selection of $5 foods. From a delicious mango lassi, to 'popcorn chicken', delicious creamy egg tart, to vegetarian fried rice and Sui Mai dumplings.

Some of the classic features of Auckland's Lantern Festival don't change. For example, the (infamous) karaoke stage, where two young girls made the unfortunate choice of singing 'California Girls' by The Beach Boys - as opposed to 'California Girls' by Katy Perry. By the end of the song they were laughing loudly into the mic and not singing.

There weren't a great deal of brand new lanterns (when you've been to the festival for four years in a row, you get a feel for what's familiar). One of the newest lanterns was the one with the girl on the bridge in front of the snakes (It's the year of the Snake if you were unaware). The lantern is said to be about the 'Legend of the White Snake', a story about a snake who takes the form of a woman.

What's always fresh and brand new are the acts the AsiaNZ Foundation bring to the festival.

One of the stunning acts on stage were the Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe, who made me feel incredibly unfit and inflexible. Their costumes were also amazing. I love the colours of the Asian culture.

Even the Sky Tower got in on the Chinese New Year celebrations.

The musical act this year weren't as unique as the Chinese reggae group from last year, but this year's classical music group 'Beauty and Melody' certainly did have beauty and melody. They were so talented and happy, and cute little smiles!

After a lot more photograph taking, I finished my night with a cooling $5 Ice Kachang, and we began to head our way back home. But we did stop at this beautiful chalk drawing on the sidewalk outside of Whitcoulls. Happy Chinese New Year everyone.

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