Are you coming to Penang for the Chinese New Year?

I am hoping to get out of Penang. But it is a bad idea because every place will be packed and prices increased. So, I guess I shall just rot at home for a whole week.

However, if you are not from Penang, you should make plans to come to our island. There are several events to be held over here. A state level Chinese New Year celebration will be held in Bukit Mertajam. Then, on the 7th day of the Chinese New Year (Yan Yatt), another one will be held in Georgetown heritage enclave. Finally, one more during Chap Goh Meh.

I went to the lighting of the red lanterns ceremony yesterday. Took this video and enjoyed my walk through the lanes. I went early to shoot and also take photos. Like one hour early.

Penang is really sprucing up for the Chinese New Year. If you go to Gurney Drive, Esplanade, Light Street and the heritage enclave of Armenian Street, Cannon Square, Pitt Street, Kampong Kolam and etc, you really feel all Chinese-y.

I can almost imagine myself, having my feet bounded like my great-grandmother when I saw a beaded shoe shop. When I was outside the Sun Yat Sen base, I imagine Mr. Sun as the strict great-grandfather. BTW, my sons’ middle name Yet came from that Yat Sen, I think. Thank God I am born many decades later or else I think I will die in those eras. The chauvinist era. BTW, our Education Minister does not even know how to pronounce the word chauvinist. I heard he said, CHOW-vi-nis when he was referring to Lim Guan Eng on TV3 news. It should pronounce as shaw-vi-nist. Come on lah, you are the Education Minister, malu kan? If don’t know how to even pronounce, don’t lah want to kutuk people using the word.

Those red lanterns remind me of the movie Raise the Red Lantern starring Gong Li. It was about the many wives of a man and how they fought to win the favour of the husband. He will select one to sleep and before nightfall, the servants will prep up that wife. They will light the red lantern outside the room of the woman to indicate the man is sleeping there that night.

One of the most valuable quote I remembered from the movie is ‘You must have the smiling face of Buddha but heart of the scorpion.’ Powerful quote, I tell you. I love being Chinese….So many valuable lessons to learn from our 5,000 roots.

5 thoughts on “Are you coming to Penang for the Chinese New Year?

  1. Lilian, I am staying put in Penang too. Don’t want to hassle with crowds and traveling.

    So I see you around la!!

    Keong hee, keong hee!!!

  2. I am not going anywhere also.The new gurney look is really beautiful. Like that like we call love environment. Pokok also got meaning – pokok pinang and not the pokok buluh. Look also shiok. I love my new Gurney Drive look.

  3. Face of a smiling Buddha and heart of a scorpion…must remember this one! Yes, I love being Chinese too, not so much in the past but now that I am old, I appreciate more the wisdom of our ancestors.

  4. That’s good to know since I am hosting the in-laws from East Malaysia this year!

    Luckily, Penang is spruced up or I’ll have to bear with, “Aiyo…West Malaysia is so dirty…” LOL Now, I can stand proud and show that Penang is not all about dirty beaches, clogged drains, crazy roads and motor repair shops next to koay teow thing seller!

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