Knowing Your Roots Part III

… continuation…

As my mom and third aunt were working at the amusement park at night, they asked around if anybody would want to buy the house off their hands, so they could settle for the house in Port Weld.The lady boss knew that they were desperate for cash and offered them half of the value of the property. Another evil bitch. Luckily, they were not that crazy to sell the property lower than market value.

My grief stricken grandma took a boat to the other side of the river to pray to the gods. She usually would go pray at the temple concerning all needs and also “kao chim”.This time, she asked if she should keep the house in Taiping Garden and forgo this one in Port Weld. So should she be selling the Taiping Garden house to buy up the Port Weld house.

The temple priest took a look at her “chim” and said calmly to her that, she has nothing to worry about because she will get to keep two houses for herself! My grandma was not convinced and she just returned home, with down cast head of defeat and feeling totally downtrodden.

It was then my first aunt decided to try her luck on buying 4D. Truthfully enough, my aunt struck the first prize of RM5,000!! So almost half of their burden was gone! They now need to look for the additional RM3,500 to pay the neighbour. With good reputation, my grandma managed to borrow money from friends and relatives (except the douchebag grandaunt).

In the end, they managed to purchase the house – which proudly stands till today along the busy Trump Road, and our point of gathering during festivities.

My mom and her sisters are quite well known in Port Weld for their tenacious and industrious characters. The old school generation usually would prefer sons to daughters. My grandma and grandpa had only one son, who was still young when all these were happening. So the family totally relied on four sisters to make things happened for them and they appeared triumphant in the end.

My mom and aunt said, they were probably the first to defy all odds working in the amusement park while safeguarding their modesty – as many people would jeer on girls working at amusement park and aligned them to be in the same category as prostitutes. When villagers’ tongues wagged, my grandma was concerned but my mom said to her mom – “Are those gossipers going to pay for the food on our table and the roof over our heads? We are doing a decent job and nothing hanky panky.” It was at the amusement park that my mom met my father.

When my grandpa passed away, the sisters managed to give him a decent sent off, with a whole roasted pig as well – which was kinda a big deal during that time. Some families, even with sons could not afford to give their dead old folks a decent burial.

I had a long and deep contemplation of what my mom and aunts had to go through in their early lifetimes so that their next generation would have a much brighter future. I feel rather remorseful that, even with so many things being handed to me since I was born without me asking, I couldn’t even achieve half of what they had done. I really feel like a failure.

I guess the only thing I could do now, is to be as filial as I could be to them, so that they would have a better remaining lives on earth, hopefully another 50 more years! I must be more patient when dealing with old people – be understanding that they are naggy and they will always be naggy.. and explain things clearly without losing any temper. I am sure one day, when they are no longer there to nag us, we will miss them tremendously. So, I guess I rather be nagged than having to spend the days in silence and void of the voices of the ladies who had made such a great impact in their lives as well as ours. May God bless the four sisters always, for their courage and perseverance.

9 thoughts on “Knowing Your Roots Part III

  1. Gina, I was touched by your family story, though we were came from the same village, but your family root’s life seemed to be more arduous yet with plentiful of courageous character, I have great respect for your family,and pray that God will always bless your family. I believe if oneself or a family lives a righteous life, God is always on your side, believe it and trust it whole heartedly. Wish you a happy lunar new year. I might drop into Port Weld to recollect my childhood memories this new year.

    • I think most families were really poor back then… my late grandma survived the Japanese Occupation. My mom and siblings survived the 513. I guess history is written all over their faces. All the struggles they had been through, poverty, marginalization, abuse. They not only command respect, they should be showered with filial piety by all of us, children.

      I will be at Port Weld only on the 7th & 8th day of CNY – which is Friday and Saturday, for the Pai Ti Gong’s festival and will be going back to KL on Saturday. Drop by 24, Trump Road if you do come to Port Weld!

      Gong xi fa cai, to you too and family! May the year of Horse brings you and your family good health, prosperity and happiness!

    • They definitely are Iron Lady then and now! Most my aunts are still working – one is still a make up artist and tai kam cher. The other one running a hawker stall selling refreshments.

  2. hmmm…such an inspiration legacy. throughout the story, we are glad that your family met good people as well. may those who have helped your family live well…and those j***i and lanj**o rot!

    • We must know our roots to understand our existence. Without it, we are nothing. And we have to remain forever grateful and mindful to take care of what’s been left for us. We don’t have much money but I think we have family warmth, which money couldn’t buy!

  3. thanks for sharing, and reminding us to be filial to our elders. i’m also trying my best to be patient with my parents, esp when i have to explain things to them numerous times… coz they tend to forget that they’ve asked me the same questions many times…

    • Must remember that our old folks are old already so they would forget if they had asked the questions over and over again.. so we answer over and over again lah. No choice. Haha. One day, we will be old ourselves and naggy.. and keep repeating same old shit.

  4. Gina, thanks for the invitation, but I just go back for the first 3 days of the new year, after celebrating new year at my parents‘ house, and dine with my primary and secondary school mates ( some from Port Weld, the rest from Taiping), I have to rush back to Singapore to reunite with my son and youngest daughter as they are force to stay behind due to National serivice(arm force)and junior college study. Gong Xi Fa Cai, Gina.

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