Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Coming Up... Nine Emperor Gods Festival 2015

Ampang Nine Emperor Gods Festival, 安邦南天宫九皇爷
Yes, time files so quickly... It is almost that time of the year again, the time of Nine Emperor Gods Festival 2015. Here in Ampang, the famous Nine Emperor Gods Temple had already started the preparation for the festival a week ago.

Yesterday, the Lantern pole was taken out to the courtyard of the temple.... 

So get ready folks for nine days of vegetarian fair, smoky joss sticks, Chinese opera, clanging bells and lots of activity at Ampang Nine Emperor Gods Festival 2015. The first day of the festival falls on the 13th Oct 2015 and the ninth day is on the 21st of Oct 2015.

However, here at Ampang, the festivities start on the eve, 12th of Oct 2015 with the Lantern Pole raising (click for 2013's lantern pole raising ceremony) and then followed by the invitation in the evening that includes a procession.

So keep those dates free and do remember, here at Ampang Nine Emperor Gods Festival, the hustle and bustle starts in the evening and goes on till the early hours or the morning (like 3 - 4am).


  • 12 Oct 2015 - Eve of the festival (raising the lantern pole) and invitation of the Nine Emperor Gods in the evening (procession).
  • 13 Oct 2015 - First day of the festival
  • 14 Oct 2015 - Invitation of the Finance Minister (procession)
  • 21 Oct 2015 - Ninth day (last day) of the festival

Stay tuned for more fun images and happenings on this festival.

Links for 2015 Nine Emperor Gods Festival:

Monday, September 21, 2015

Yellow is... beautiful

There is just this strange attraction that the colour yellow has on this nation. From the royal colour to a 'reviled' protest, we seem to be attracted to all things yellow. And yellow Adeniums are of course, very popular.
Adenium Thong Yod (or Thong Yot) - golden drop. The yellow is strong, but takes on a greenish-chrome yellow tone. Well, still better than pale off-white yellows.

Despite the attractiveness of yellow adeniums, they all tend to have a major flaw, at least in our climate. The yellows tend to fade to cream or white, or never develops the intensity that is advertised when grown in say Taiwan or Thailand. However, the plus side of yellow blooms are that most of them are weakly fragrant or more so in some selected hybrids.
Adenium Yellow Premsup - a pale yellow aging to pink blush yellow.
Adenium Princess Fragrance - the scent is rather strong, especially as the flowers age.

I believe that this is due to pigments or pigment development that is temperature sensitive or controlled by temperature sensitive gene transcriptions. Some bicoloured reds are too, ranging from truly two-toned to just pure red depending on the temps that were prevalent when the buds were developing.
The two-tone petals of Adenium Vietnam Love appears to be temperature sensitive. Too warm and they turn all red.

Perhaps breeding of yellows could be done in Malaysia, and a strong persistent yellow form be found for our climate that doesn't fade away.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Are you still hungry tonite?? Hungry Ghost Part 2

Before we move on to the Mooncake Festival, here are more shots of Hungry Ghost Festival...

Pandan Perdana, KL
Under my umbrella, ella ella - the lamps are the signpost to spirits that a 'feast' is on.
Colourful kuihs on the offering table.
A light for the souls - Tua Pek and a candle.
Huat ah, huat ah... kuih with the Chinese character 发 (發) meaning to bring forth ie bring forth good fortunes etc.

Pandan Mewah, Selangor
A leap of faith - A Taoist priest does the 'Breaking the Walls of Hell' ceremony for departed relatives.

Bukit Mertajam, Penang
I've got my eyes on you...
Hazed in...
Pray, pray, don't play play
I'll be back... next year.
Lim Jetty, Penang
A Chinese opera actor puts on make-up to perform for the spirits and humans.

 Jelutong West (Bukit Dumbar), Penang
The paper effigy of the King of Hades being carried off to be burnt.

Ampang Nine Emperor Gods Temple, Selangor
Offerings to the Hungry Ghost.
Not BR1M - priest giving out coins during the prayer ceremony.

Ampang Mewah, Selangor
A syncretic version where Amida Buddha and Taoist Pure Ones were worshipped in the festival.

Prayers for the spirits
Burn baby, burn... King of Hades and his retinue being sent off at the end of the ceremony.

Taman Desa Bakti Selayang, KL
Once in every three years, they will have a procession to 'cleanse' and appease the spirits at the roads.
Offering at road junctions.

Seng Hong Temple Brickfields, KL
Throw him down once more... Mediums playing with a bed of broken glass.
A medium in trance with Da Shi Ye, the King of Hades, blessing the plaque that he carries with blood from his cut tongue.
Sending off the King of Hades with the help of mediums.

That's all folks, see you next year... Like Arnie said "I'll be back!"