Yay, I managed to get a cake for Dad on the second day of Chinese New Year when 95% of Singapore is closed! Even though it turned out to be an extremely sweet-pink-coloured one, it is still very much loved by all. It also turned out that I am 2 weeks late instead of 2 days.
The date of birth on Dad’s birth certificate was wrongly registered by a full ten days. That was not the shocking point, because it seemed like the norm in those days. What I was more shocked by is that we didn’t know about it, but my sis and bro-in-law do. I actually cannot really tell which are the more shocking finds, heh. My brother-in-law shares the same (real) birthday as my Dad! I always thought it was just some lunar calendar way of counting, cos ten days is a little too much deviation.
Singapore is really pretty amazing, having grown so much in just a single generation. Of course there are other stuff that we ended up sacrificing in that crazy pursuit of growth, which still disses me (as a citizen, and as a planner). When my dad was born, it was just two years after the Japanese Occupation and pretty much a mess when our colonial masters left us to rot. I suppose having a birth registration was a good enough achievement then! It is interesting to see all the different spellings of our surnames, even though all of us are from the same clan! The Tohs, the Toks, the Cheoks, the Choks, are all part of the 卓 (zhuo) family. The Ts are different spellings for the Hokkien dialect, and the Cs are different spellings for the Cantonese dialect. As a large proportion of the people were illiterate then, the names were spelt by the officers as how they were pronounced. With regards to the wrongly registered dates, I have no idea how that came about, but my dad’s was not the only story I heard. There was either a communication error, or people then did not really bother with accuracy – date of birth versus date of reporting. It also goes to show how much we take for granted that birth takes place in hospitals (it really did not cross my mind that my grandpa had to cycle to somewhere to report “hey, i got a son as of XX date”).
Took me a long time to learn this titbit of information! 😀 I am going to ask his siblings about these later!
Nap time again. Since the 15th Feb evening, my life has been in phases of food, food coma, more food, yikes noisy children again, food, food coma, and so on and so forth. My sis has been ordered bed rest by the doctor, so I will be be Oliver’s nanny for tonight’s big dinner. Wish me luck.