Monday, February 18, 2008

Love the Lions

Yee Sang tossing at Sin Chiew Daily Newspaper; we had Lion Dance visit to our media partner to show our appreciation of good working relationship and to bless the year with prosperity and good luck.

Do you know that Yee Sang tossing is a Malaysian culture only? It is not practiced in China, Hong Kong or Taiwan. Only famous in Malaysia. When asked among my Chinese friends, they are all not very sure where it came from. Even if it was originated from China, someone introduce it to Malaysia and it got famous here. Most believably it was started in Klang Valley. Later, it was fast spread throughout the nation. You can taste the best Yee Sang in hotels around Klang Valley including the one from my hotel. Fascinating, isn't it. I asked my boss to clarify this to me. He told me all these stuff about Chinese immigrants starting it during the tin mining era. Well, for sure, I could not find any writing documentation to support the fact. May be the Chinese knows better and can explain this one day.

Another famous popular Chinese dish is Bak Kut Teh. It is also not a dish familiar at the restaurants in China, Hong Kong or Taiwan. Exquisitely in Malaysia only. May be Singaporean will argue but hey, who can beat Klang Valley for that. You can find it every where. I, as a Malay can still tell the obvious. My brother in law is a Chinese convert. He used to cook us a Chi Kut Teh, so I had a bit taste of the herbs used. It was a simple herbs mixture but Chinese in Malaysia managed to turn it into hot recipes that is famous among the non-malays because the Malays do not eat pork. The halal version is Chi Kut Teh, that uses chicken instead of pork.

Back to Lion Dance, I am writing about it actually, now I am straying. Pardon me. Our Lion Dance Troupe for the day was Chung Wu Tai Chi Society Dragon and Lion Dance Troupe. They've won a few competition awards around Malaysia. Another proud facts about Malaysia is that we are among the top Lion Dance performer in the world. We have beaten up China, Hong Kong and Taiwan in many world competition. I've read it many times in the newspaper but I have no energy to find the facts for the benefit of this blog. You may check it out yourselves, ya.

My Lion Dance Troupe, have done a great job in Sin Chiew Daily. They have shown an impressive performance today. I am so proud to have chosen them to perform on behalf of our hotel. Our audiences all were entertained and sometimes made sounds such as Wow! Oo! Wah!... They commented that the performance was the best among the five other performances earlier that came to visit Sin Chiew Daily. I was like a proud mother and so happy to hear that.

What so interesting about the Lion Dance that we brought was that they incorporated a fun element, good communication and movements such as teasing and playful act among the two lions as well as the audience. The throwing of the mandarin oranges was fabulous. All of us try to get one and was not despair. It was awesome. They could throw it very accurately. And they can really do stunts with ease to the applause of all who was present.

Towards the end of the visit, we all had fun and exchange contacts. Due to excellent job, the lion dance troupe were in demand by the media now. They might get themselves even busier next year :)

To show my appreciation, I would like to disclose their contact here:
CHUNG WU TAI CHI SOCIETY DRAGON AND LION DANCE TROUPE
No. 81, Jalan Hujan Gerimis 1, Taman Overseas Union, 58200 Kuala Lumpur Tel: 019-312 0886 (Mr. Danny Sew)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Love Conquers All

Leonardo da Vinci wrote:

"The unicorn, through its intemperance and not knowing how to control itself, for the love it bears to fair maidens forgets its ferocity and wildness; and laying aside all fear it will go up to a seated damsel and go to sleep in her lap, and thus the hunters take it."

Earlier mentioned of unicorns in the western world was perhaps by Herodotus in the 3rd century BC. He wrote something about 'horned ass' of Africa. A century later, a Greek Historian and Physician described unicorn as 'ass of India'. He travelled to Parsi and heard stories from merchants who passed through India, obviously why the name is such. Fascinating, isn't it. You'll get all these information from the internet, of course.

Surmising all, in the western world, unicorns are a beautiful creature. Mystical and ancient. People say it's a myth, a legend and a fantasy but it is also related to spiritual beliefs in paganisms and Christianity. Poets, artists and writers relating it to romanticism. In novels we read stories of unicorns that turned into human beings or the one that can change shapes as they like. Not just that, in most literatures unicorns are described to be powerful, graceful than the horse, immune to black magic, can perform wonders and change shapes, the reason why this creatures are so synonym with magic and romantic love. Sigh.... So much about unicorn, isn't it.

This topic is dedicated to the person I love, who loves unicorns. He's like a unicorn too, in the unicorn and the maiden story. All the beauty, grace and wonders, unicorn seemed to be better that human being. We use elements such as these in our fantasies, to escape the reality. I love living in a fantasy world whereby the world is a better place to live in, no wars, no differences, no trouble, just love...love...love...love.

Anticipating Valentine's tonight is unsettling for most ladies, I know. We always expect something special will happen or maybe our partner will treat us to a special dinner, special gifts with a bouquet of red roses or a special 'I Love U' whispered in your ears. Hmmm....what a perfect night it would be. I wish...

You would be blessed if you have someone to say that magical-three-letter-words to you tonight. Not so much of the Valentine's night. It's just the thoughts and the spirit of having a day to really remind us of what we forget to do or say everyday of our lives. Sometimes we take things for granted, we forgot to appreciate or show our love to the one that is most important to us. With Valentine's Day, it gives us reason to do so without hurting certain egos. I would give green light to Valentine's Day on that reason.

People being in love and out of love everyday. If you have broken up with someone and alone tonight, then take it easy. It's okay. Life is a journey, not a destination. We must keep on going or we will not be anywhere. Even when we think we have reached a certain destination, it will not be the end, there will be more to go. You know it when you are old enough.

Single ladies out there do not be in despair thinking that you are missing the boat. Please be reminded, in this era, no such thing as you need to hop into the first boat that you see. Your journey might not be saved anyway. In this millennia you should build a ship instead and smaller vessels will want to tag along definitely.

Alright folks... So much said... I wish all of you lovers and singles HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!
My prayer... May your love blossoms like flowers that will never die and may it burn like a fire that will never cease and may it spread throughout the world for our peace and harmony. Amin...

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Welcoming the Year of the Rat

Home for the destitute women, House of Grace, a place in Pandamaran, Klang, Selangor.

This place is a refuge for the rejected, homeless, and neglected women of the society. The home gave shelter to the destitute women since 1980. The occupants ranging from 28 to 81 year-old. There are from varying background starting from physically handicapped, mentally under-developed, aged, stranded, abused and widows. Interestingly, some of them have been staying there for 10 over years.

The lady with the cane, on left hand side is aged 79-year old. However, she doesn't like people to hold her while she's walking. She likes to do things by her self. A show of pride and great will to stay healthy and alive. In fact most of them are very healthy and energetic. The house teaches them to be independent and they were given a regular medical check up from the Klang Hospital.

In conjunction with Chinese New Year, I went there to investigate their needs. I went there with Yasmin, my perfect partner on one sunny day. We were shown to the condition of the house which needed a spring cleaning to welcome the New Year.

I went back to propose to the management, all HODs agreed, so off we go on Saturday, 2nd Feb'08 to Klang like a rescue team :)

A total of 20 of us went there to execute our task. We are happy that while doing our jobs, the old folks sang oldies to our listening pleasure. It was very sweet and touching. Imagine your grandma singing you that old song from her era. Not just that, they even sang us songs of prayer in Chinese, English and Tamil to bless us all for coming to help them. They thanked us profusely for the little help given.

After all clean and shiny, we had Yee Sang tossing with the residents. All praying for a good year ahead. Then we serve them lunch which came from our own hotel kitchen and finally it's time to give away Ang Pow! Our Resident Manager gave a little speech on behalf of all of us with a packet of Ang Pow to each one of the resident before we say our farewell.

We went back to our hotel; some went back home to continue weekend with family while, I went back to continue being the MOD (Manager on Duty) of the day. Sweat, backache and all, are not a comparison to the feeling of fulfillment of giving. Another humbling experience to all of us.

House of Grace is located at this address:
925, Jalan Sekinchan, Pandamaran, 42000 Port Klang, Selangor, Malaysia
Tel/Fax: 603-3166 3500
Email: grachom@pd.jaring.my

GONG XI FA CHAI!
Wish you all prosperity and good luck.

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My mind says:

  • "I CHOOSE TO LOVE EVERYTHING THAT IS MINE"
  • If it's not you, who else!
  • Love your country. Keep it SAFE & GREEN...