Saturday, January 31, 2009

Visit to Kelantan

Queen of the Malaysian fruits - Mangosteen( 山竹). Now there is mangosteen juice in the market, reported to be healthy, as it contain antioxidants, which is able to combat the aging process, it can be used as supplement to support our immune system.

Wah.............. it is a fresh mangosteen.

In the pasar Kada, on the way to Tumpat.

Stall selling Fruits, look at the Mandarin orange or they called it tangerine.

Fish seller, most of the market stalls in Kelantan are run by woman.Women have always played a major part in the economy of the state.

Kelantan, an Islamic state.

Kelantan or Darul Naim , is one of the northernmost state of Malaysia, located at the East Coast of Peninsular Malaya, bordering South Thailand & the South China Sea. It is one of the Malay dominated state. It is also an Islamic state.It has been politically controlled by PAS government for some time. Many of non-Muslim Malaysian,and even foreigners may have misconception of the state.

I am fortunate to live in Kelantan during the eighties, the memory from Kelantan is good. That is the time when I exposed to a dominated Malay culture for the first time. Being from a state which is Chinese dominated, Penang; the cultural shock is unavoidable.

There was time taken to understand the Kelantan dialect; which is complete different from ordinary Malay language. The makan become make, pergi become gi......
When you hear Kelantanese voice, the chances are it may be a local Chinese speaking the local dialect like a typical Kelantan Malay. It is also common when Kelantan Chinese speak Kelantan dialect with each others.

The time taken to adapt to Kelantanese Malay food, that is easier. This is because being exposed to Nyonya culture in Penang,the adoption of Kelantan Malay food as my daily routine faced no difficulty. I love the Kelantan Malay food, nasi dagang, nasi laut, nasi kerabu.....Ooooo it is good. All locals love the Kelantan food, & some of the best nasi laut may be from a local Kelantan Chinese!

I left Kelantan with sweet memories,and .....with a wife.

This Chinese New Year 2009, with one week holiday. I am going to walk the memory lane in Kelantan.

Ku nak gi kelante, make nasi kerabu, nasi dagang.....marilah.

Family Photo

Chinese New Year is the time for family gathering. That should be time for catching up on the latest happening & past events ,with the family members. There will be time of sharing and fellowship. This is the time of re-union for family members from different places, with the family from the home town.

There will be laughter, memory /story telling, watching movie together, some even go for cards playing........

Time for keeping the Chinese tradition alive, and teaching them to the younger generation.

It is also time for a family photo.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Grandma & technology

This is the picture of a 99 years old grandma ,using IT technology to obtain resources and contact her relatives during Chinese New Year.

See how joyful is her.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Chinese New Year

This is my first day of the blog, my maiden post.

Today is Chinese New Year,the year of Ox. This new year is special for me. I am able to use technology to wish my relative from all round the world. By e-mail; by skypee, by telephone, which I normally will only send greeting new year cards. I can talk personally with the relative in mainland China, Singapore and USA.

But I still have fond memory of receiving Chinese new year cards each years, the joy of receiving the cards and knowing that someone still remember you. This is especially so when the cards are from long lost friends/relatives. It is long time since I stopped my habit of sending Chinese new year cards; and I have lost the blessing of sending Chinese new year cards. I used to send Chinese New Year greeting card to grandma each year, but it stopped when the IT come into our world.

We have a big group gathering in youngest aunty's house this Chinese New Year . Gin Fong came back from Saudi Arabia, CK came back from Singapore, Boy come all the way from Sg petani , Kedah today, Chinese New Year day. Grandmum who is 99 years old is now staying with aunty. Since the last time she was admitted to GH Penang, we are all worry about her. We come with one heart, to greet grandmum good health. CK said we are going to give her a birthday soon. We are going to walk with her now, and give her our love and support , to let her enjoy every second of her life. She is a great woman, and a great grandma to us .

She married my grandfather when she was just 15 years old in 1926; a young hakka lady from Hetou village in Daipu, going all the way by boat to marry a young man from Pa Hou village, Huliau, Daipu. The young man,my grandpa just came back from Nanyang, and she had never met the man before. A blind wedding at those day is common for hakka lady.

Immediately after the wedding, she has to follow the husband to Nanyang. They have to take a river boat from Shang Ho Pau, and travelled by Han Chiang river or Han river(韩江)to Teochiew(潮州), and then to the port, Swatao(汕頭/汕头). From there they travelled by ship and cruise through the South China Sea all the way to Singapore. It will be months to reach Singapore. From Singapore they will be checked by the colonial Bristish's immigration official before continue their journey to Penang. The young man & his newly wed wife is going to the island called Penang in Malaya. This young man is working with the eldest brother. He worked in his brother's studio until 1937, then he started a new business of his own. But in that year 1937 , 7th July Japan attacked China, and the war began in China. 1941, 8th of December 1941,Japan armies landed in Tumpat , Kelantan. Later, Penang fell to the Japanese armies. All the new business was gone, the shop in Chulia Street, Penang was bombed. They lost everything.

Grandpa,my grandma and their families, have to escape from Chulia Street, Penang to Paya Terubong, the rural village area in the north of Air Itam, Penang. The life then was tough, they need to change to farming to survive. Grandpa need to feed 2 sons 3 daughters. The heavy burden and tough living during the Japanese Occupation have take away the best of grandpa's life, he was very sick after the world war. Grandpa passed away in 1945 at the age of 43, the year World War II ended.

Grand ma had to take up the task of feeding her family from the day grandpa passed away. It is difficult day when the resources are lacking, and she was only a lady from the mainland without any education & money. She started farming and collecting woods from the jungle .......... that is how she bought up all her 5 children, alone.

She was strong, and with single minded to build up the family after the war. She is now 99 years; and God is going to blessed her for many years to come. The grandchildren is going to walk with her, she has bought up our parents and bought us joy when we were in our growing years.

Long live , Grandma.

Happy Chinese New Year to you.