On 1 February the Chinese year of the Tiger started. As a preparation for a New Year, Chinese buy new clothes and have a haircut. We did the same, in the left picture I am standing in a shopping center next to my own zodiac sign.
A 29 January the management of our condo had organised a simple Lion Dance.at our swimming pool. Fun for the kids.
The traditional wish for CNY is Gong Xi Fa Cai (in Mandarin, “Congratulations and may you be prosperous”). Here is my CNY wish, from our new penthouse.
On CNY-eve, 31 January, we went back to Parit Baru, Aric’s hometown. That is a yearly tradition, but last year it was impossible because of the Covid 19 pandemic and travel was very limited. Click here for a report about CNY 2020. .
This year travel was allowed again and we were fully vaccinated, but it was still advised anyway to take a Covid antigen test. Already on our way, we heard that one of Aric’s brothers had tested positive, although vaccinated. So we decided also to take a test and started looking for a pharmacy. Many were closed, but we found one in Tanjung Karang. Aric bought two test kits and we took the test in our parked car. ;-). Fortunately we were both negative.
We arrived in Parit Baru in the afternoon.. Here is a Google Earh map of the village and its location in the most northern part of Selangor. . The Bernam River forms the boundary with Perak. Parit Baru is surrounded by fishing villages.
There was time to take some photos of the surroundings. Nothing spectacular, just quiet agricultural countryside.
Then it was time for the CNY-eve dinner, traditional steamboat. Three families live in the kampung house, so dinner was in several sessions.
.Here is the kampong house. It may be about 70 years old. The families run a successful hardware and timber store. It is basically a wooden house, only the front façade and a few other parts are in stone.
Posing in front of the house. Alone and with the children of one of Aric’s cousins. Notice how they hold puppies, the one held by the girl has just opened it eyes.
The three families have their own rooms, but share the common living room and the kitchen. Even after Aric’s parents passed away, a couple of years ago, the setup is still the same.
Although the families share the kitchen, they have their own sink, fridge, washing machine. It might be a unique construction. In this photo, Aric’s aunties to the left and Aei Ling, his sister to the right.
The house is surrounded by a big garden, with fruit trees and flower bushes.
It is a tradition that people give ang pow to relatives and friends. This time we also did it. I received myself several red envelopes with money inside 😉 The picture at the right shows that I am getting old. Sunglasses to protect my eyes and clip-on reading glasses.
In the afternoon we drove around a bit, to take pictures
Another steamboat dinner, this time with Ong (Aric’s brother in law) and nephews and nieces. Seafood can not be more fresh than here!
A curious visitor.
A few of my waterfall friends go back with CNY to their hometown Teluk Intan and several times we have used day three of the CNY to make a trip to a new/remote waterfall in the region. I decided not to join this year, feeling less confident in the jungle nowadays. Our last trip was in 2017 and not successful, here is the report : An unsuccessful waterfall trip so it was decided to give this Lata Jala another try. This time my gang reached the fall.
The first picture shows my “gang”, from left to right Siang Hui, Teoh, Nick and Joshua (a new member). Lata Jala,, in the middle, is an impressive unspoiled waterfall. The right picture shows an aerial photo of the fall, taken by Joshua’s drone.
Aric and I explore a bit more the countryside around Parit Baru. This is the Bernam river. Across the river is Perak.
Left a Taoist temple in Sg Lang, one of the Chinese fishing villages. Right a young mangrove seedling, trying to survive. Notice the numerous holes, made by tiny crabs
Back in Parit Baru, a few more family photos. A group of young ladies, Aei Ling with two cute young kids and Ong teaching his son how to ride a bike.
In the evening there was a party with yee sang and a lucky draw,
And of course there were lots of firework.
The next morning I went to the village with Ong for breakfast with Roti Tampal. I knew about Roti Telur but this was new for me. Egg on top, not inside
Before we left there was another praying session..
A few days later, there was another celebration, in Puchong with Ong and his family, He is Hokkien and for the Hokkien community day 9 of the CNY is an important date. It is the birthday of the Jade Emperor, the God of Heaven. Again there was yee sang.
And there were drinks too 😉 Ong and have a drink of the (in)famous Timah whisky and the younger generation shares a bottle of wine. Playing cards, singing karaoke, a very nice evening.
An offering table is prepared for the God of Heaven, and joss sticks are lit.
At midnight there is a lot of firework. Note how I am protecting my ears.
The ceremony ends with the burning of Joss papers.