A few blogs back I mentioned about my ancestors, and on Sat. May 24th, 2014, I had the chance to attend the mother and father’s day celebration dinner with my second family!
The event was hosted at Pink Pearl Chinese Restaurant (珠城) in Vancouver, and during the course of the dinner, I thoroughly enjoyed my conversations with the guests. We shared each other’s stories, and I was impressed with some of the elders’ tales of how they arrived in Canada and how they were able to stay positive even if they could not fit in, as they were neither fluent in English nor familiar with this new culture.
I was curious to what made them so happy? And the answer is that Vancouver, simply, is full of kind people who accept each other for who they are, and people who love living in a culturally diverse city.
Although most of the guests spoke Cantonese, not Mandarin, I was still able to chat with them and bring chuckles to their faces, using my limited Cantonese vocabulary. I even managed to learn a few more useful sentences for introducing myself, with countless tries at attempting to pronounce my name correctly, so that I did not end up accidentally swearing. (Yeah… With improper pronunciation my name does sound like swearing and I am not kidding.)
A terrific show was also put on. The Karaoke’s and dance performances marked the climax of the night, especially when all the tables joined in to sing the prominent Canto tunes. My mother surprised us all with her voice, and it looked like she would be performing at the next gathering too.
Near the end I was invited onto the stage to formally introduce myself to everyone, and I think my Cantonese turned out to be all right! I was really happy that I have found another family of mine, and in that moment, I was contentedly reunited with relatives descended from 4000 years ago.
Thank you to the directors of the ancestry society (至德总堂) for organizing such a great dinner!
Ariel Jingjing Cao
~ muah <3 ~