As a Chinese living in Australia, I go to see the New Year’s Eve fireworks as a ritual every year. It is always a good time to reflect on the past year and look forward to the next when the firework spectacular lights up the sky from Sydney’s iconic attraction – the Sydney Harbour Bridge. This year’s display did not disappoint with photos shared on WeChat wowing many of my friends back home.
The news reported that with a price tag of $7 million, the New Year’s Eve fireworks have attracted an estimated 1.6 million people around Sydney Harbour. From where I was standing, that seems very accurate. While waiting for the firework to start, I stood amongst the crowd where I heard conversations in an array of languages including English, Spanish, French, Chinese, and many more.
"We think it's really worth it, really worth it to provide a focus and an opportunity for people to come together, our visitors and our multicultural community to have a safe celebration of who we are in Sydney in the 21st century in our wonderful city," Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore said.
With 37% of the population born overseas and 40% of residents speaking a second language, Sydney enjoys the reputation of cultural diversity and inclusivity. NSW also has the largest share of international students in Australia. I was also delighted to see the rainbow fireworks from the Bridge as a tribute to Australia saying Yes to marriage equality in 2017. Diversity runs through the veins of Australian society, making Australia a wonderful place to live.