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Public security turns the tables on traditional feast
02.14.2018

    Lin Xinhui, 33, and Zhu Yanjun, 35, are a married couple but as police officers they will have to forfeit the traditional Chinese Lunar New Year’s Eve dinner with their two children and other family members again.

    “When I was a little girl, Chinese New Year’s Eve meant so much to me as an occasion for a family reunion, but now I have to put my work first,” said Zhu.

    They met a decade ago while training at a police academy and got married in 2011. Lin now works with the No. 4 Squad of the Huangpu Traffic Police, and Zhu works with the Huangpu Public Security Management Division. They have a 6-year-old daughter and a 3-year-old son.

    “I have my New Year’s Eve’s dinner more often with my colleagues than with my family,” Zhu said.

    Lin would fill in for few officers who were granted leave to go home and have dinner with their families. After their own brief dinner at work, he and fellow officers would be back on the streets again.

    “When fireworks would go off, we knew that the New Year had arrived while we were on the beat,” Lin said. “I used to send my wife a quick message wishing her Happy New Year.”

    The couple often ended their shifts by going to a restaurant near their home in Pudong to have the first meal of Chinese New Year.

    “I call my daughter when I get the chance during New Year’s Eve, and she always sounds unhappy and asks when I will get home,” said Zhu.

    They try to make up for their absence by arranging family reunion during the Spring Festival period. Zhu typically works for four or five days during the seven-day holiday. When they get some time off, they cook at home. Both of them are taking cooking classes.

    Huangpu police said they try to ensure that at least one member of a police couple get some time off during the Chinese New Year holiday.