Monday, February 6, 2012

Pick up my mandarin orange and be my Mr Right

Today is Yuan Xiao Jie or Chap Goh Meh in Hokkien. It is the 15th day and last day of Chinese New Year.

Yuan Xiao Jie is the equivalent of Valentine's Day - a day lovers will meet. In ancient China, maidens will be allowed to come out on this night, hoping to find a good husband. Once she takes a liking to someone, the parents will send people to negotiate for a proper wedding.

There is also the custom of throwing mandarin oranges into the river in the hope of getting a good husband as the saying goes 'Tim Kam, cuai ho ang' (Throwing mandarin oranges to get good husbands). In modern time, the unmarried ladies will write their names and mobile phone numbers on the fruits before hurling them into the water or river. Young men will then pick them up, ring the numbers to strike up a relationship.

Happy throwing mandarin oranges on Chap Goh Meh.

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