I have been sharing some of my favorite angpow pieces on an angpow collectors group in Facebook and some members have been telling me to continue sharing my memorable stories and so I thought, why not write it down, that way, our kiddos can read about it when they grow up next time, eh?
For those of you who are not familiar or never heard of the words 'Angpow' (also known as 'ang pau', 'ang pao', 'angpau'), here is a quick definition:
Angpow = Red Packet (filled with cash inside) given during festivals
So for today's angpow story, it comes from this piece of lovely angpow:
A while back, a member of the angpow FB group I joined posted this tiny close up shot and asked us to guess where is the angpow from.
Immediately after looking at that image of the little girl holding a red lantern walking, I know which angpow it was from as I had the same piece in my collection as well. I kept it as it reminded me of a childhood memory of mine, happened somewhere between the age of 8-10.
One year during Lantern festival, I was back in my kampung during school holidays and during the night, my cousins and I decided to play some games at the roadside.
Yup, the tar road smacked right in front of my late popo's (aka my late grandmother's) house. Well, to be honest, there's not many cars at that time anyway (I think it was about 10-11pm). A bunch of us (around 8-10 of us) played some games like we would be sitting in a circle formation, then one person will walk behind the circle and quietly dropped off a hanky while those sitting on the ground will sing some songs or something, can't remember, but this game is like the musical chair..
So anyway, after the songs ended, those sitting must immediately checked behind to see whether they have the hanky. If yes, he or she must quickly get up and chase the person who dropped the hanky.
Anyway, just want to share a childhood game of mine before I get to the main point of why the little girl holding lantern becomes the topic of my storytime today.
After a few rounds of the musical-sit-on-the-tar-road-sneakily-drop-a-hanky-behind-someone-and-pray-you-don't-get-bang-by-a-car-at-night games, we decided the night is still young, hey we were still young, you only live once you know, so a cousin suggested we light up our paper lanterns and walked around the kampung.
Just us kids between 8-10 years old.
And hey, we were young, none the wiser so we excitedly lit up our paper lanterns with candles and started our adventures. It was all fine, we were chatting and laughing and we even made it to about 100m further down the road where the whole stretch of road was REALLY dark.
In fact, total darkness.
Yet, we soldiered on because kids know no fear.
Until someone cleverly mentioned the word 'ghost'.
That's when we felt the chills. And scared ourselves shitless with own phobias and fears. Needless to say, ALL of us turned around and bolted straight back to our late popo's home. As if the last person left behind will be terrorised by a ghost or something.
Paper lanterns burnt (because sudden u-turn causing candles to topple and burn the lanterns), slippers fell out (panicked you know) and adrenaline rush and making it out alive hahahaha...
Such a silly experience but yes, memorable still. None of us dared to repeat the same stunt since even though the only ghosts there is was on our own head lol...
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