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Ghosts, rice cakes and paper mansions

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In Singapore, there are two major festivals that happen in August.

The major event that happened was Ramadan. It is a period of time where Muslims fast (Not eat) for a whole day until late evening. They do it for a month before having a big feast and celebration on Eid al-Fitz. The reason Muslims fast is because of spiritual purity. Muslims hang up beautiful decoration of little triangle bags of rice called ketupat. Ketupat is a rice cake encased in woven palm leaves. It is one of the food which Muslims tend to eat after fasting at the end of the day with curry and satay.

The barber I went to in Singapore used ketupat (rice cakes) as decoration

Beautiful ketupat decoration

The other big festival is the Hungry Ghhhhhhhh-ooooooo-sssssss-tttttt festival. It is a time where Chinese around the world burn incense and offer food to the dead. You can burn paper cars, houses, toys and anything else the dead might like. But be warned: Some ghosts want Ferraris and might come back to haunt you if you get them the same DVD that you gave them last year! It occurs during the seventh month of the Chinese Lunar Calendar. Chinese people believe that the dead should be respected and if they don’t leave offerings, the ghosts will get hungry and cause havoc. Some ghosts are very fussy and prefer certain types of Pringles and like Micheal Jackson. (OK, only kidding).

Offerings to the dead are everywhere.

I overheard the conversations with a ghost and his son.

The ghost was haunting his son’s flat because he gave him a Spice Girls’ album.

“Dad, why are you hitting the cat?”

“Because I’m not happy with your present this year.”

“Why?”

“Because I wanted Girls Aloud, not Spice Girls!”

“How could I know?”

“You didn’t. So I’m telling you next year GET ME A GIRLS ALOUD ALBUM!”

“OK, but can you stop hitting the cat?”

“Nope.”

Have you been to any festivals that you remember? What were they?

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About epicduda

I'm 16 years old. I like animals, lasagne, comic books, films, role-playing games and Doctor Who. I write cool stuff - Doctor Who, science fiction, film reviews, and quirks about Britain. I have a blue-tongued skink called Georgy and a cat called Billy.

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