Wednesday, January 9, 2008


My Family Tree

Monday, September 17, 2007

My Father

The Man From China

Taking his rest in his Grocery Shop, " Lean Joo Seng"

Father, what made you decide to leave China for Malaya ( Name of Malaysia before 1957 Independence) ?
Well, during that time there was nothing to eat and leaving "Teing Sua" (China in Hokkien dialect) was the best and final option.

The above question which I asked my father when I was back to Penang during college semester break. He was then sitting in the hall reading his favorite " Kwong Hwa Yit Pau", one of the local Chinese newspaper. There were other types but he read this newspaper the most. Well I do not understand Chinese but local people would said that all local news were published in it.
Born in 1911.Searching all the travel documents, I would say that he was around 13 old years when left China. (will confirm with eldest sister on his age)

Where do you stay when you arrive in Penang?

I stayed in a place where people called it the "Luck Keng Cho" ( a place where the local people called it<"6 houses" as there were only 6 houses at that time) near the Union Primary School along Jalan Burma.
I went with him one day and I could not take any photo for all the old houses were demolished and new one were constructed.
(I will scan a map showing where the former 6 houses where situated.)

You are now a Grocery shop owner. Did you have any other jobs before?

When I arrived in Penang, I took up a job as a helper in a boat. The boat took me over to Thailand where we bought fish and then returned to Malaya. I left this job because on one of the trip over to Thailand, Songkla, I was nearly beaten by the "Siam Lang" ( Thai people). The "Siam Lang" (Thai people) were very fierce.
After I left this job, I started to work in a Sundry Shop as a " Coolie" ( Shop helper)
It was in this shop that the owner taught me to read and write in Mandarin.
Later on, with some cash and some money that I managed to borrow, I opened up a shop in "Gua Kan ", ( a place where the local called it just to differentiate that it was in the out skirt )Tanjong Bungah,
Note: no pictures could be taken because this shop was burnt down (due to electrical short circuit). Only one picture was taken on the opposite side where the old Bus Station was situated.
( try to get pictures from neighbour if they still have them)

The opposite side of the grocery shop showing the bus station
Today, the bus station have been shifted to a new location
in "Lai Kan" ( name of a place in Tanjong Bungah where old market was situated)
Janet with our family car,Morris Minor,PL8262

During the old days, all of us would board the bus to
school right in front of our door step in the early morning
Special privileges to the Kang family!