December 19, 2007

A blast from the past

The above image is my late parents wedding invitation. I found it in one of photo album stored in a wooden drawer at our house in Lampung, Sumatra. This invitation is almost 50 years old now, printed in 1958 in a simple white stenciled paper. The wording on the invitation was written in an old style of Indonesian language. Here is the translation in English :

Mrs. Liem Soen Tiong (widow), requests the honour of your presence on Sunday, the 9th of March 1958 which falls on 20 Tjia Gwee (the 20th day of Chinese calendar), at the marriage of our 4th daughter :

Liem Kim Nio (Mally) and Thio Oen Tjoan

We kindly request a little bit of your valuable time to attend a small celebration at no. 30 Keradjinan Street (Gg. Sekolah Tukang) at 10.00am to 14.00pm---as of the customs that time, reception immediately following ceremony---. We sincerely thank you and look forward to your presence.

A little note to my non-Indonesian friends. In Indonesia if you were born to a Chinese descent family, it is a compulsory to have both Chinese name and Indonesian altogether in your personal documents. There are two kind of Chinese in Indonesia. The first, called "Cina Peranakan", who are locally born Chinese (like both of my parents and grandparents), they have mix-married with native Indonesians and speak Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian Language). The other one are known as "Cina Totok", they are migrants who continue to speak Chinese, some able to speak a bit of Indonesian Language. Both categories as Chinese.

To me, I consider myself 100% Indonesian as I do not know how to speak Chinese and I have very little knowledge of Chinese culture. The only thing I appreciate highly from the Chinese are their hard working attitude and their culinary. Other than that I am truly an Indonesian.

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