Here we still follow some of the Chinese custom like the Moon Cake Festival and the Chinese New Year in which you can see fireworks and hear fire crackers on New year eve at midnight. Everyone will wait for this big occassion and for Chinese it is one of the most grand celebration throughout the year. Business men will spend money on celebration, and spent money on fireworks and red packets for all kids and teenagers, for parents and relatives. The red packets contain money inside and all the kids are always excited to get that red packet and curious to know how much they get each year. A once a year cleaning up and mostly clear up junks and rubbish collected for the whole year. During the eve they will cook good dishes and invite parents, grandpas and grandmas ,uncles , aunties, nephews, neices, etc for the home cook dinner. Drink some wine or any whisky or brandy. Some family may go to restaurant to celebrate.
Many special dishes will be serve on that special day. For Chinese they celebrate their new year for 15 days and some will hold open house on the first or second day. Open house means they will cook some dishes and invite friends to come over on that particular day.
It is good to know one's custom especailly when on is from different race or country.
Besides serving food, there will be varieties of cookies and cakes and other goodies to choose.
Lion dance is most popular during the Chinese New Year. They have Lion Dance competitions every year in Genting. And those skilled dancers are real good in the dance. They normally have a procession on the road in town before celebrating the Chinese New Year and business men normally will invite lion to dance either at their residence or at their business premises.
i was here on 31st December 2005 in the heart of Kuching City and witnessed a 'crazy' scene of people in cars and motorbikes waving big Malaysian flags and Sarawak flags about. Shouting "Merdeka" as their drive around the streets lining Sarawak River. The scene resembles a city that have just won a World Cup or something similar. It is exciting to see so many people coming together although I wouldn't venture outside as they don't look like the safest drivers around. The picture attached see a car decked in the national flag. This decorative style is evident in alot of other cars around.
Iban Tribe have a old believe that if their photo was taken, their soul will be sucked into the film and into the photo.
During my visit to a Long House built by the goverment for tourism and living by real Tribal people in outer part of Kuching, we were told not to take photo of the people there but taking photo of their building is okay.
Respect their belief ...
I know this tip is not important for most travellers. However, for those who travel far to attend a Chinese Wedding of their loved ones might think this is useful. Besides, I thought that this is quite an interesting Chinese Custom to share with those of you who are interested and curious about other races' customs besides their own.
Tea Ceremony is a local custom practise by the Chinese. It's done after the wedding, such as church wedding ceremony. However, on the wedding day, before the bride leaves the house, she will serve teas (holding the cup with both hands)alone to her parents as a sign of respect and to thank her parents for raising her.
Traditionally after the wedding, the newlyweds will serve teas (holding the cup with both hands) to their family members, by inviting them to drink tea by addressing them by formal title, eg Pa, Ma, 1st Uncle, 3rd Aunty, etc. The people being served will sit on chairs. They will serve the teas in order, starting with the groom’s parents then proceeding from the oldest family members to the youngest, e.g. the groom’s parents, then his paternal grandparents, then his maternal grandparents, then his oldest uncles and aunts, and all the way to his older brother, etc. Then this will be followed by the family members from the bride's side. In return, the newlyweds receive lucky red envelopes (“lai see” or 'ang pows' which means “lucky”.) stuffed with money or jewellery. These envelopes are placed on the platter which holds the teacups.
After all the elders have been served, it's time for those family members who are younger than the groom and bride to take over their task, and invite the groom and bride to drink tea. So, the groom and the bride will sit on the chairs and the younger members of the family will serve the tea (holding the cup with both hands) to them by addressing them with formal titles. In return, these younger ones will receive the ang pows which will be placed on the platter.
The beautifully conditionned waterfront is the place that most Kuching inhabitants choose to spend their free time, to have fun, to see and be seen.
The Waterfront has thus such a provincial atmosphere that, combiend with its exotism make of it a unique place.
Note, however, that there are not too many foreigners in Kuching, so some people will stare at you if you do not look Asian.
On our way to visit Fort Margherita, we passed by a small school with school children practising a song about homework, a song which went on for about 15 minutes!
Kuching means cat in the local indigenous language. To celebrate this, there are large Cat statutes in the central areas of Kuching.
On the west side of the Tourist District along the waterfront is the Kuching wet market. Here you can get fish, fresh produce and cheap food.
Pointing with your fore finger is considered rude but generally tolerated. The proper way is to use your thumb on your closed fist. Your thumb shows the way you are refering to. Happy Thumbing!