Joseph Chok Hiu was born on the day the Chinese deity, the Kitchen God goes back to heaven on the twenty-third day of the lunar month just before Chinese New Year to report on the family’s behaviour of the past year.
We joked that nobody would forget Joseph’s birthday, not our Ah Tai, not our Grandmother Kong, or our Grandfather Chan. Joseph was deemed to be a very important person.
We had our little “Kitchen God.”
He was born in Chung Hua road, in the middle of the night accompanished by heavy torrential rain and thunder storm. A concerto announcing the arrival of a god.
Though the Chung Hua Road house was a small terraced house and without a garden, it was a brick house. In Sibu, only the rich lived in brick houses. It was the first brick house we lived in.
Grandfather Chan said, “Joseph is a lucky boy. He was born in a brick house, and his father became a teacher of teachers.”Grandfather Chan’s prediction came true. Father was promoted again and again.
Joseph studied in Canada, England and Australia. He has a very beautiful wife, Audrey and his own law firm. They live at Clear Water Bay, a private island on the Gold Coast. He has three sons which are so important to a Chinese family, not so much to Joseph and Audrey but to the Chans.
Joseph has a big heart. He welcomes us to stay with him when we visit Australia.