Sunday, 20 December 2009

I'm back!

Being at Ipoh was like being in rehab. I had no internet, no TV (actually there was, but nothing that I watch), and only a few books I brought along with me. So what could I do? Laze around doing nothing, or read a book.

But the reason I was there was for a relative's wedding. An aunt, to be exact. And I'm reminded of huge weddings whereby the bride and groom are in the same room as their parents' friends, etc who they don't know, and also of how big my dad's family is. Actually, that's a pretty normal-sized family, I mean most of my friends have perhaps 6-7 aunts and uncles, maybe 12 grand aunts and uncles, countless cousins and distant relatives. But the hardest thing about it all is that there's a different name you call everyone, and I just can't remember all of them. And you have to double everything, for you have to take into consideration your paternal and maternal side.

Large families are weird indeed. You can be in a room full of strangers, yet you're related by blood or marriage. It's just so funny that I know more about my friends than I do about several cousins I see during Chinese New Year. In fact, I don't even know their names, just that they're my paternal grandmother's sister's grandchildren. Or perhaps my uncle (my grandaunt's son) who is actually still in primary school, or at the most Form 1 or 2. Imagine calling someone younger than you 'uncle'. Fortunately, due to the age gap, we've never interacted and I've never been forced to call him that. He mostly play with my younger cousin who's about the same age, and I just couldn't resist telling him one day that his 'friend' is actually his uncle.

And then there's the gossip. It's like real life Brothers & Sisters. Everything scandalous is known to all family members, but at least we don't talk about it, but just keep our mouths shut.

Although I can't adapt well to all of a family's customs, I find big families intriguing. That's just me. Big families are just more lively and more fun, at least that's what I think.
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