Thursday, July 10, 2008

Mom's Birthday Party - Fun in Ipoh

Ah, the party...

Yes, after Tina and some of the Sisters got their hair all prettied up, and Allen, the boys, and I caught up on season one of The Apprentice, it was time to get ready to head out and meet the rest of the family for the big birthday party.
This is a rough shot of the room from the table that Tina and I were at, there were at least six tables full of family and friends, each table holding at least 10 people. A good turn out, and Tina and I were introduced to almost everyone. Tina to more of them, as she could manage out a few lines of Chinese which everyone really seemed to enjoy.
As we've seen in every Chinese party that we've been to, there is a lot of 'cheers' at every table, with everyone getting involved and just having a great time. We both took our turns going from table to table and having drinks with the other guests. This adds up to a lot of drinking quickly, so usually you just take a quick sip and then move on, but as the night progresses you get the cheers of 'gam bei' which basically means 'finish what you've get left'. That's why most glasses only have a small amount of alcohol in them...This is the mom, one of the two birthdays that they were celebrating at this party, the second being the eldest daughter, SiewMin, who aslo has a July birthday.
After dinner, which was an almost nonstop parade of delicious local and Chinese dishes, the cakes came out. One of Siew Ying's daughters played Happy Birthday on the violin (the first video below) and then everyone joined in to sing several rounds of Happy Birthday, both in English and in Chinese (second video).

It was a lot of fun, and we really enjoyed ourselves, although we were quite stuffed from all of the food and then the cake. They had some local tiger prawns in a soup that were unbelievable, well that and the duck, and the pig.

Tina with all of the sisters - in order they are Siew Yih, Siew Ying, Siew Min, Tina, and Siew Hong. Somewhere in the evening Tina was renamed to Siew Teen so that she would fit in better with all of the sisters....and with that there was much rejoicing.

When the party finally wound down we all headed back home, where Siew Teen and I had thoughts of sleep. The rest of the family had thoughts of going to KTV for some good old karaoke singing. You'll have to let us know if you'd like to see a video of that too....

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