Ten days before and ten days after Cheng Meng (Ancestor Worship at places of burial), many Chinese would be carrying out their filial obligation. My cousin, his son and I went to Gopeng to pay homage to our paternal ancestors on Saturday.On this occasion, I would like to share with you what I know about my late paternal grandfather, Mr Cheah Voon Hoy. He was a tin miner. My grandpa was born in Gopeng, Malaya and studied at St Michael's Institition in Ipoh from primary to secondary school. He studied martial arts and was particularly skilled in using the stick as a weapon. He also studied Taoism and could be considered a master. He also had knowledge of using herbs and other elements to treat illnesses. He went up the hill in Gopeng to meditate and would bring down herbs and medicine from the hill after meditating there for days. My mum said that when she did not conceive after a year of marriage he gave her a pill he made from herbs and after that she got me. (No wonder I love herbs so much). He also travelled to many countries in his lifetime. He even visited Hawaii. Though he was educated in the English language medium, grandpa Cheah was also proficient in Chinese. My dad told me that my grandpa was friends with Kung Fu master Kwan Tuck Heng who acted as Wong Fei Hung in the old black and white series.Grandpa was the only son of his parents to reside in Malaysia. His three other male siblings lived in China, Hong Kong and Singapore. His three other sisters were with him in Malaysia.
Unfortunately for me, grandpa died when I was only three years of age. If not, imagine what he could have taught me about the Taoist arts, herbs and kung fu.