Time to remember….Winter Solstice this year falls on Dec 21, 2012, the ninth day of the 11th lunar month (11M9D). This was the offerings made to Mr and Mrs Tan Yong Thian by their granddaughter. Rice balls in syrup (in the two porcelain bowls) are eaten to signify another year is passing. This is how the southern Chinese mark winter solstice, and demonstrates the Nanyang (Southern Chinese diaspora) culture in Singapore. For more practices on winter solstice, click here. It reads:
“To the common people, the Winter Solstice meant a happy get-together. They would put on their best clothes, visit friends and celebrate it late into the longest night. Food plays an important part in the festivities. But the custom varies from place to place. In the chilly northen part, people eat mutton and dog meat, which are able to bring warmth to the body and dispel the cold. Noodles are popular in the inland areas, while Tangyuan, a kind of stuffed dumpling made of glutinous rice and served in soup, is widely liked in the southen part.”
(Above) Preparing rice balls in offering cups for gods in a temple in Silat Street, also known as Tortoise Hill, with 3 cups on each altar.