Had an exciting friday, and am keeping my fingers crossed about it. But- whatever will be will be.
Aside from that, we 'celebrated' the Qingming Festival (aka Tomb Sweeping Day) last Sunday. That's the annual Chinese festival where you go honor/remember your ancestors by visiting their gravesites. Tidy them up, leave some flowers (sometimes food), burn some spirit money, etc.
All the photos in this post were taken last year (2010) by Kat.
This year there was an absence of Kat (who was out of state, tsk tsk), as well as a camera.
Here we all are last year:
According to my father, Qingmingjie is a national holiday in Taiwan and kids get the day off from school and everything there. As far as traditional practices, we're pretty informal about it and don't really go aaaaall out, but generally we go and bring flowers, some incense and tons of spirit money. The basic idea is to clean up the gravesite and leave offerings to your ancestors, ranging from food to drinks to flowers to 'money' (see photograph above: spirit money's in the plastic bags). And to get the money from our world to the afterlife, you can either burn or leave it at the gravesite... We always light a fire up though and burn away.
Other families can go all out with leaving 'money' and food for their ancestors:
My favorite part is:
"However, the push for consumer electronics -- including smartphones and TVs -- isn't exactly embraced by older Chinese, one of whom said in the video below that many relatives wouldn't even know how to use an iPad because the gadgets came out after they died."
Haha. Are there Chinese folks who are legitimately concerned about this? That their ancestors won't be able to use their iPad offering because they never used one while alive? More amusing is that "shops that sell paper replicas for the festival can't keep up with demand for the replicas -- mirroring Apple's own problems with keeping the real thing in stock in many of its stores".
On a much more serious note: rest in peace, John Kelly. Heard the news last week. It's sad when elderly folks pass, but downright tragic to go out like that at the prime of one's life. Wish things didn't turn out the way they did, but at least you're no longer suffering.
We all get tired/I mean, eventually/there's nothing left to do but sleep/
Also, for a white boy, you spoke Chinese pretty well, man. RIP.