The Life in this island is full of Chinese culture and traditions, something different but fascinating.
Have you ever seen the bride groom welcoming the bride by boat? if not, come and witness here. Because car and other vehicles are not available in this island, thus the groom has to drive his fishing boat to "received" the bride. The "Open car door Ang Pow money" changes to "hold boat tie Ang Pow money". Sometimes they will walk around the Jalan Besar market "informing" others that "We Just married today?"
There are many family name associations like Chia Association, Chua Association in this island. They will help in the funeral works. Normally it will take 3 days to accomplish. The host will prepare food and drink for guest. If you ever heard a villager saying "go to eat fish porridge tonight", it means attending these occasions. The host will invite monk or Taoist to organize "funeral chanting" attended by all the relatives, in believing that it will help the dead to "Amithaba Buddha Western Pure land" for the next life. The coffin will bury or burn in the mainland.
Bicycle fell down
All the roads in this island are higher about 3 or 4 feet higher than swamps. Almost 90% of the children experienced falling down to swamps while learning how to cycle. We called this "eating black chanting". May be you will get a chance to saw a children from swampland while you visit this island.
Dry Seasons lining-up for water
Before the government provided ware supply, villagers depended on rain water for daily use. Thus, every houses is equipped with at least one water tank. If there was no rain for 2 month, all the water will be "out of services". Consequently government will send water from mainland by boat. Then villagers will take a trolley with tanks, lining up from heliport to police station waiting for water. Those taking water by their fishing boat had to line up beside heliport.
This has became a memory when water was supplied directly from mainland via water pipe underground in 1993.
Actually houses were built higher than the high tide level, about 3-4 feet higher than swamp land. It was a perfect drainage system, and we never experience flood. But in 1998, the abnormal high tide shocked the islanders. Almost 30% of the houses were covered by flood up to 2 to 16 inches or higher. Some of the roads "disappeared" and "drowned" in the floods.
During high tide, you may se children and teenagers swim beside their houses. That is a natural swimming pool.
Chinese Opera and Mini Concert
There are so many temples here. Some of them will organize Chinese Opera and mini concert at their God’s birthday, lasting for 3 to 14 days every years. A lot of people will come to attend and enjoy the shows. This is one of the main entertainment on the island.
The 7th month of Chinese Calendar is Ghost Festival. It is believed that ghost in hell has one month "holiday". People will prepare some food to "feed" the hungry ghost, burn some "money" for them. Temple will organize chanting rites for ghost.