It was just luck to have caught these pictures of the Zhong Yuan or Hungry Ghost festival. I was in my hometown,Taiping, Perak for our CHIJ ( Convent of the Holy Infant Jesus) alumni lunch gathering over a weekend. My friend, PS, a childhood friend had come along too. We found time to browse in the wet market. She was dreaming of the herbs that she could most certainly purchase to make 'perut ikan', a nyonya dish ( fish stomach with herbs and vegetables). I was only looking for fruits.
A banner saying, 'Perayaan Zhong Yuan' right at the entrance of the market greeted us . It was lively with some townsfolk setting up tables with all sorts of food to offer to the deceased.
This traditional Chinese festival is celebrated by Chinese in many countries on the 15th night of the seventh lunar month. The Taoists believe that the spirits including those of the ancestors visit the living 2 weeks before and after the festival. The petty traders offered a variety of food and lots of paper money to be burned.
When we were young, we were told to limit our outdoor activities as the spirits were out and some bad luck might befall us.