Will’s Entry: So long, farewell

18 Mar

The next morning in Hong Kong we tried to do some shopping.  I’ve discovered that I like doing that sort of thing at the end of trips.  It takes me awhile to get in the right mood for it.  Not much noteworthy happened as we were just waiting until the events for the evening.

I don’t know what to really call it but that evening we went to the Funeral Home for Yeh Yeh’s (Grandpa) “wake”.  It sounds like my grandparents were neither religious or old-fashioned so there was a lot of indecision regarding how the process would work.  When we arrived, we received an envelope with a candy and the equivalent of a quarter inside.  The Chinese apparently want the occassion to be a positive one.  The candy represents making the experience sweeter and I think that is a tradition that I think I would like to keep.  The money is just because  . . . well anytime you get money it’s supposed to be a good thing.  We were given instructions that the money needed to be spent that evening and I think mine went towards some Mango Tic Tacs. 

Admittedly, the rest was very boring.  When we arrived, we bowed 3 times to show respect.  From that point forward, whenever anyone arrived they would do the same and then we (aunts, uncles and cousins) would bow to each other.  I’m sure there’s more involved but I didn’t really understand it.  Those in his direct line wore special black robes.  Anyway, we did this for 4.5 hours and just talked in the meantime.  This is the part where we were most glad that we didn’t have our little ones.

We went to a big dinner afterwards (food is like money . . . good) and there was nothing special about it except we left a seat open.  Oh, and there’s always a vegetarian dish which is traditionally just to please Buddha.

The next morning we went to the funeral home to escort the body to the crematorium.  We had one final viewing and a bow.  My mom explained that on the final viewing, we were ensuring that all his personal effects had been correctly placed and that he was placed straight.  They also placed a pearl in his mouth but I have no idea why.  From there his direct male line left first.  My dad carried a picture of him and represented Yeh Yeh.  I was to follow and if Jason were there, he would have followed as well.  In my imagination Jason was there and after the first flight of stairs, I picked him up the rest of the way.  Though I didn’t understand it all, I’m glad I could go and be a part of it.

Semi-funny story:  At the dinner my mom gave my sister some fish and put the sauce on top of it.  She put way too much sauce so the rest of my sister’s food was swimming in it.  When she tried to give me some, I feared the same so I said I’d have the fish but no sauce.  She said “of course” I’d like to have some (in Chinese) and gave it to me anyway.  Well one bite later I picked up a piece of fish, accidentally dropped it and sauce went flying everywhere.  Mostly got all over me but I thought the whole situation was ironic.

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6 Responses to “Will’s Entry: So long, farewell”

  1. Mickie March 18, 2009 at 10:17 am #

    Note to self in 70 years at Will’s funeral give everyone candy. Got it. Mango Tick tacks? Did you save any? Those sound weird.

  2. hgundred March 18, 2009 at 10:21 am #

    I am not a huge fish fan, but the boys have gotten me to eat swordfish, and I think Art made some one time I liked. Love the comic strip…LOL! 😉

  3. tracie March 18, 2009 at 10:52 am #

    So now I know why you wrote things down because I don’t remember a lot of the details. I will correct you on one though…we had a big lunch after the funeral on Thursday. We ate at Cafe de Coral after the viewing. We got there just before they closed.

  4. kay March 18, 2009 at 11:20 am #

    I like the candy idea, but I really don’t think Jason and Sierra would have made it through 4.5 hours with just one little candy.

    And I think I’ll do a little research on the pearl thing, interesting…

  5. tracie March 19, 2009 at 2:21 pm #

    I just realized that in this post you completely skipped all of Wednesday. I was about to post about Wednesday but I have no idea what we did besides shopping. Obviously you did too. 🙂

  6. tracie March 19, 2009 at 2:22 pm #

    Oh wait…I’m wrong…am I wrong…I can’t remember. You’ll have to help me out.

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