Friday, March 1, 2013

A Chinese New Year Rant (2013)

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Excerpt picture from Carlsberg's Chinese New Year 2013 Campaign of Prosperity and Positivity

The Lunar New Year, a Chinese celebration tradition that has long been celebrated by the Chinese since we can remember, which mainly consists of : elders giving 'Ang Paos' (red packets), Lion Dances, Fireworks and a lot of eating, and most of all the gathering of family clan members.

As a kid, this was one of the holiday season I looked forward to, of course who can deny not looking forward to relatives giving you money to spend on toys and such in exchange for a memorized greeting of wishing prosperity and good health? It was also a period where I can be worry-free (From homework) and just wander around with cousins while visiting houses of relatives whom I have no recollection of.

Thinking back of those days with rose-colored glasses sure brings a sting of bittersweet nostalgia

The journey back to hometown Ipoh with the girlfriend

But as I grow older, these things grew secondary and my perspectives have changed, I began to notice more details in the older generation's conversation,

The ever warm trio of paternal aunts(Fondly known as 姑媽 Gu1 Ma1 )who's hospitality seem to be close to motherly has sibling rivalry that tends to want to one-up one another in the slightest ways, though it's petty as most

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Aunt Sabrina (Fondly known as Mama Mo), whom I have not seen for a decade as well as 6th uncle and his wife

A cousin who was the eldest among all of us(whom I recall had daughters older than me that called me Uncle) ran a huge beef and sausage business that was highly successful but went down under a few years back due to a rumor started by an ex-employee that said his meatballs from Sweden wasn't halal. Which in the end proved to be baseless but by the time the investigation was finished, the biggest vendor had already gotten their meatballs somewhere else (which explained the difference in taste at said establishment in recent years)

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And her husband Ben, whom I always see year after year

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Their son (on the right) and friend who was visiting Malaysia for the first time

The third uncle whom is known for his colorful language every time he came over(though was very friendly and brought the kids to shopping malls and theme parks) was actually suffering from diabetes (who passed on a few years back due to the stubbornness of not wanting to stop sugar intake)

The nephew Alfred whom stuck to me like glue after awhile, no relations to the dark knight

Now, the drive back to Ipoh (The hometown where I spent most of my earlier years during long term breaks) is mostly about catching up with relatives and seeing how the coming generation have grown (and maybe to see their reaction when given 'Ang Paos' in the next couple of years or so hoping)

At her hometown messing with granma's scooterbike thing

They say that life's a journey, not a destination. And as every one of us is on never-ending voyage to the next destination, I'd like to think of  Chinese New Years as a time where we all take a quick break from life and meet up at the next rest stop on the highway.

A night of drinking games with monopoly deal with the girlfriend. Best dry beer ever, it shall be a yearly tradition from here-on out.

And just enjoy the company.

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