As Chinese New Year approaches, I think of my parents and grand parents. I think of how the pig had played such an important part in the Chans and Kongs.
Last year, I spent time in Sibu, sharing a bed with mum's sister, my aunty Ngui /Kong. I learned something interesting from my Aunty Ngui-Kong. My grandmother kong aka bodai reared pigs during the war. Just before my mother went to her match making session, she played with the newly born piglets, and the sow bit her heel. That heel was very painful and mum walked with a limp.
The Kongs explained that Mum was gardening and while digging with a changko, she hurt herself. When she wore her wedding gown, she still had a limp and the Chans said she was a cripple.
On the other side of the coin, it was the pig that attracted my Ah Tai, mum's grandmother to the Chans. The first time, Ah Tai landed at the Chan's jetty she exclaimed,"Wah, during the war, you have pork." Ah Kung was washing his pickle jar where he had kept his pickled pork.
It was a source of contention leading to a family feud. I wrote this n my From China to Borneo to Beyond and World War 2 in Borneo.