Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Who is a Peranakan or what is the definition of a Peranakan? Chew Joo Chiat was born in China and came to Singapore to seek his fortune. He became wealthy and married a Peranakan lady. I read a number of websites which stated that Chew was a wealthy Peranakan land owner. I am a first generation local born and married a nonya's daughter. Does it make me a baba? I am proud to be associated with the Peranakan and its culture. In fact, the Peranakan adhered more to the Chinese tradition than the Chinese. I love Peranakan cuisine and on pre Chinese New Year's eve, we had 'toh panjang'.

More Singaporeans came to know the Peranakan culture through the TV series of "Little Nonya". Sarong Kebaya business has also improved. I managed to get one suit for my grand daughter to put on Chinese New Year day. Below are family photos showing my connection with the nonyas and babas.

Chew Joo Chiat's daughter, my grand aunt

My wife when she was a teenager

My wife's uncle and aunt in Melaka

My mother-in-law sitting in the centre with relatives around her

My wife and I are on the right

My grand daughter, the little nonya

Trophy won by wife for the best dressed nonya