There are a few things we do every year to prepare for the new year. Chinese New Year, if I want to claim it for my race. But I won’t. Because, frankly, it’s not an exclusively Chinese thing.
In my family, we make Murukku – a coil-shaped, savoury, crunchy snack originated from Tamil Nadu. This Chinese-Tamil juxtaposition though, could very well be an exclusively Malaysian thing and I find that endearing.
We also cook, a lot. Most of the time too much for our own consumption. My family practises Taoism for the most part. We cook to offer food to the gods on special days, then we feast.
And of course there are family visits, with ‘family’ here defined loosely. For us, my great aunt will often come and stay with us for a couple of months. She’s Australian. And the new year is the time for her to re-unite with her Malaysian siblings.
You’d probably notice one thing about the pictures – that they feature primarily one elderly lady.
She’s the matriarch of our family.