Stephen and Su Kim, we are all so happy for you. You are good for each other and you are great together. We wish you a very happy and blessed life together.
It was a night of celebration, a gathering of clans, Malaysian (Peranakan) and New Zealanders (Kiwis). A union of two life-embracing spirits with a shared passion for languages and peoples. The various speeches and emails from a round the world testify to how loved this couple are.
It was a night where languages and cultures mixed freely and happily. English in both Malaysian and Kiwi accents and slangs were heard and even Singlish from our neighbours to the south. Malay with a Peranakan twist was heard too and we were also treated to a good dose of Maori. Finally there was liberal use of chinese “Yam Seng” when the couple were repeatedly toasted by friends and family.
Carrying on with the literary theme. The groom gave a beautiful rendition of a poem he wrote entitled “Cape Richardo” which spoke of his desire to fly to be by his love’s side. It was wonderful but way too long for this nutter to remember and report. The bride replied with equal eloquence and shared a traditional Peranakan pantun (poem). Fortunately this traditional poem is short by nature and hence I am able to recall it here;
“Kita belayar, laju, laju,
Menuju ke kota Singapura.
Lupakan layar, lupakan baju,
Asalkan jangan lupakan saya.”
In English the poem says; ” We are sailing fast, heading for Singapore. You may forget the sail or even your clothes, but never, never forget me.” This is in the traditional pantun style where the first two lines tell a story which has little meaning but is followed by two lines that convey the deep message.
Before I end, I must mention my good friend Harriet who was very nervous about giving her speech. It turned out to be warm and humorous. A job well done.