Thursday, March 10, 2016

My Ah Kung , Grandfather's attire



This is Myanmar's shan traditional attire. (Photo on the left) I asked permission from my friend Nang Kham Set if I can borrow the photo. She has kindly said yes.

In 1900s, all the men who left Quaang Tung to Borneo dressed like this. Frog buttons and fishermen's pants. Over time, some of them changed to wearing western clothes. My grandfather aka Ah Kung continued to wear it until he died in 1976.

When I was young, I was rather embarrassed he adhered to his Chinese culture. He was like a countrybumpkin wearing slippers/jandals.

 When Bruce Lee became famous, young Sibu boys mistook my Ah Kung to be a Kung Fu Master and nagged at him to teach them Kung Fu. He was tired of them following him, one day, he opened his bamboo umbrella and they all ran away. They thought it was his Kung Fu move.

As I grew older, I am proud of my Chinese roots, and equally proud of my Ah Kung. I wrote about him in my books From China to Borneo to Beyond. In my World war II book, I fictionalised him as a hero.

In the photo, the elderly gentleman wore a fedora. I went at lengths to describe another character who wore a fedora.


1 comment:

  1. Hahaha... real fun the way you wrote and described.. Thumbs up!