Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Alphabe-Thursday letter P for planting

This "poker" rice planting equipment children had to used to help their parents can really turn kids off planting rice.
Thanks Francis Chen for this photo and lending me your son as the model. I guess in the past, kids didn't wear shoes.

This is a traditional South-East Asian nursery rhyme originated from the Philipines. It tells the of back-breaking, dirty,squishy muddy work under a sweltering sun

My music teacher taught me this song, and I in turn teach my New Zealand students. Rice is a valuable commodity and we are taught not to waste it. A common grandma's warning to kids who don't finish their bowl of rice will marry a spouse with pock marks.

When I was teaching in Kai Chung School in Binatang/Bintangnor, I went back to my parents' home in Sarikei in the weekends. Sometimes, I caught a bus, sometimes I took a boat called an express. The bus took me pass rice/padi fields like the photo. I took this during our recent reunion. 
My student/friend Francis explains how he used to plant rice.
Francis Kim Hung Tiong I use to when I was in Form 2. My dad asked me to move in front to poke holes into the soft ground so that they follow behind to plant the rice. That tools got 4 pokers, so it make 4 holes in a roll. At the end of the line, ONLY THREE HOLES REMAINS!

  • Ann Chin Thanks for first hand info, I have added it to my blog, and will use it when I teach. Don't understand this line. At the end of the line, ONLY THREE HOLES REMAINS!
  • Drawn by Francis Tiong

  • Francis Kim Hung Tiong That means I didn't go straight! Instead of 4 holes only 3 remains. My dad did the first row already. So he ask me to continue with the 2nd rowl only when my elder sister realized that she has no hole to plant her rice seedling.

  •  · 1

  • Ling Liong Lai We used to have one in our farm.
      •  · 1

      • Mag Yaw Lee Chewchia I have seen this at my friends' house too during my childhood years....this is for racking the soil and to put fertilizers in, right?

    Planting rice is never fun
    Bent from morn till the set of sun,
    Cannot stand and cannot sit,
    Cannot rest for a little bit.

    Planting rice is no fun
    Bent from morn till set of sun,
    Cannot stand, cannot sit,
    Cannot rest a little bit.

    Oh, come friends and let us homeward take our way,
    Now we rest until the dawn is gray,
    Sleep, welcome sleep, we need to keep us strong
    Morn brings another workday long.

    Oh, my back is like to break,
    Oh, my bones with the damp still ache,
    And my legs are numb and set
    For their long soaking on the wet.

    In English "Planting is no joke"  We did the actions. We loved nursing our sore bodies. It is no wonder kids don't want to plant rice.

     I modified the song for teaching and added my own humorous last stanza to make it current affairs. This post has evoked memories of my friends who once planted rice  helping their parents. Today, they are engineers and bankers.

    I feel so privileged as their ex teacher, especially when I did not teach them in their class. They ave submitted work that I needed.

    Thank you all for brainstorming and helping me out . This post is an unexpected one from the Kai Chung Reunion.

    Planting rice is never fun
    Bent from morn till the set of sun, Cannot stand and cannot sit, Cannot rest a little bit.

    Oh, my back, wants to break, 
    Oh, my bones are so painful,
    And my legs are numb and set
    Because of the soaking in the wet.

    Planting rice is never fun
    Bent from morn till set of sun,
    Cannot stand and cannot sit,
    Cannot rest a little bit.

    Papa, I am not going to plant anymore,
    I am going to work very hard,
    I am going to be an engineer,
    Or a banker in the nice office.

    Oh, my back, wants to break, 
    Oh, my bones are so painful,
    And my legs are numb and set
    Because of the soaking in the wet.

    Children today don't want to eat rice,
    They want to go for fast food,
    French fries and Hamburgers,
    Or  pizzas and spaghetti.

    Oh, my back, wants to break, 
    Oh, my bones are so painful,
    And my legs are numb and set
    Because of the soaking in the wet.


    The orange colour, is a fake flower, to raise fund for Arthritis New Zealand. I imagine it is a sunflower, giving a ray of hope to the sufferers.

    This is a disease that the Chinese know very well. When we were young, we were told to wear dry clothes, keep our hair dry. If not, when we grew old, we will get Arthritis.


    Rheumatoid Arthritis

    Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes chronic inflammation of the joints, the tissue around the joints, as well as other organs in the body. Because it can affect multiple other organs of the body, rheumatoid arthritis is referred to as a systemic illness and is sometimes called rheumatoid disease.


    ABC Letter H for Hindu


    I was five when we moved to the Government quarters in Sibu.

    There was a Hindu Temple which this building has replaced.

    At that time, it was a small building full of mystique. We did not see worshipers or priest. The windows were closed and there were rails above the windows for ventilation. We climbed up to see the many idols there. Outside, there was a well, and somehow, we kids made up a rumour that it was haunted. Some one had drowned there. There were calamansi aka lime trees and the fruits were high up. We climbed up to steal them. There were some gardenia bushes and we stole the buds.

    When I grew up, I became a faculty wife. My husband became a university lecturer at Nanyang Technological University. I met other faculty wives, and many are Hindus. The mystique is gone, I became their very good friend. I was invited to a wedding and to their apartments. They like elephants. They do a puja.

    I wrote my book," Cry, the Oppressed women." and I based my book on some Hindu women and families.

    Photo one is a recent one from my friend Jayalakshmi Saratchandran.


    Mr. Ting Ming Siong, Guiness book of records.

    Up Date: When I returned to Sibu in 2013 to launch my books, I had become Facebook friends of Andy, Mr. Ting's son. He apologised he couldn't come, and told me Mr. Ting was selling his noodles just where I was staying, RH hotel.

    Unfortunately, I was in a rush to fly to Miri, and didn't have time to go and say hi.

    This was posted about five years ago.

    In 1991, when I was living in Singapore, I was very surprised and proud that a man from my home town Sibu, Mr. Ting Ming Siong held a Guiness World Record. I read with pride that he held the record for being a best man for the most number of times.

    That Christmas, I returned to Sibu to visit my relatives. My aunts treated me to a restaurant at the See Hua Daily News factory at Sungai Antu. Lo and behold, who did I see seated at the next table? I asked my aunt if he was who I thought he was. My aunt said yes, and asked how I knew. I told her I read it in the Newspaper in Singapore.

    I asked my aunt why he was so popular. She said he is very eloquent in his speech. He was not just a bestman, people requested his services as a Toastmaster and his toasts.

    I went to congratulate him and asked if I could have a photo with him and his lovely wife and family. He was very happy to oblige and that the news paper in Singapore published an article about him.

    Last evening, I made a new Facebook friend orignally from my home town, but now workinging in Miri. Christopher Gan is a Wedding Planner at Grand Palace Hotel, Miri. His friend commented that he must have organised so many weddings that he could be in the guiness records, I asked Christipher if he knew about this Best man.

    Christopher said yes, and told me that Mr. Ting runs a coffee shop called Delta Cafe in Sibu. He sent me a photo of that important document.

    Thank you Christopher for the Coffee Shop photos and his own with the chef.

    Here's another of my bucket list ticked. To be photographed with a famous person, a Guiness World Book record holder. It pays to be shameless and ask to have a photo taken with famous people.

    Monday, August 31, 2015

    Dad and some enterprising boys

    Photos: I took these at Wellington Johnsonville.

    A real story: 

    After the war, Dad went to Singapore to study. He  was in a hostel in a 7 day Adventist school, next to a very big cemetery. The Bidadari Cemetery was just near door.

    His seniors told him to come earn some pocket money. They showed him how to scoop of the melted candle. 

    A man came on a bike to buy the molten wax. Dad initially felt uncomfortable. But after a while money took over fear.

    Bidadari Cemetery was a multi-religious burial ground opened on 1 January 1908. It was located at the junction of Upper Serangoon Road and Upper Aljunied road, and derived its name from the wife of Maharaja Abu Bakar of Johor, whose istana had stood there.[12] The word “bidadari” is itself derived from the Sanskrit word “widyadari”, which literally means ‘nymph’ or ‘fairy’.
    The cemetery contained burial sites for several religions and races, including Roman Catholics, Protestants, Muslims and Hindus. When it was opened, the Roman Catholic and Protestant sections also each had their own chapel. The cemetery was also used for military burials, and was the resting place for a number of prominent individuals. One of these was the English sailor Augustus Podmore Williams, upon whose life Joseph Conrad based his novel Lord Jim.
    Bidadari Cemetery was closed in 1973,


    Sunday, August 30, 2015

    Saturday, August 29, 2015

    Kiri King, working dog: hearing dog.

    I had the privilege of greeting at Mt Albert Baptist Church this morning and greeted a very special visitor. I thought, I hope I have time to talk to her mum after church, and indeed I had and I asked permission if I could take her photo.

    Kiri is a hearing dog for Celia King. Today was the first time, they came to church. Celia is Jono's mum. Jono plays the drum in Church.

    Kiri is a member of "Paws in Schools" team with Outreach Therapy Pets.

    Kiri loves cuddles and Ice cream from McDonalds. She was born in 2010, and a Golden collie.

    Kiri, I hope you will come again, I might sneak in an ice cream.

    Celia, great to meet with you. We will connect via email.

    My email: annkschin@yahoo.com


    Blogger is playing a trick on me, I can post to some of your posts, Gattina, Leslie. I don't know why.