Thursday, 27 December 2012

0 Oh , Christmas tree!

Ever wonder why do Christmas trees were everywhere when Christmas season comes?
Several reasons why you would have it around your house would probably be....

 Reason #1, merely for Christmas decorations. You erect it every year during Christmas season without failed because you think that  your Christmas will not be perfect without it. The Christmas tree kinda give you the serenity and the Christmas spirit.
Christmas tree at Leal Senado , Macau.

Reason #2 , Christianity symbolic. Yes, if you are a Christian you would not find anywhere in the bible saying anyone, let alone King of Herod or the wise men from East who first saw the star of Betlehem when Jesus Christ was born did erect any Christmas tree to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. The wise men only brought presents for Maria and Joseph! Never a tree!

Behold, i am not saying all this to change any traditions.
But, you maybe erect it for the following reason too....

It was erected as to appreciate the birth of Jesus Christ on the earth , the incarnation of God. Earlier,it was decorated with candles, ball,candy canes, usually food,  and at the top of  the tree would be either angel or star. Under the Christmas tree would be gifts that would be given to children and the rest of the family.
All this decoration symbolise joys and hope that the world has when Jesus Christ was born.While the star represents star of Betlehem that appeared on the sky above Jesus  when He was born. While the gifts actually represents all the gifts that the wise men from East (as stated in the Holy Bible) brought to Maria and Joseph when they came to visit the newborn, Jesus Christ. 
Christmas tree at the lobby of Grand Opera Hotel,Manila.

Reason #3, paganism. 

 Pagan also had trees to celebrate the winter solstice, usually the evergreen ones. Whenever winter comes which is on December, they would bring these trees inside their homes, had them decorated and worship it. Different ancient religions has different representations of trees but each of them generally worship it for triumphs and hopes as well as to chase away evil spirits. Almost all the major paganism in the ancient world like, Egyptians, Romans, Germans, Scandinavians and even Great Britain before Christianity worshipped evergreen trees.

So, what is your purpose of having Christmas tree in your houses?
Christmas tree and gingerbread little house at Tasty Buffet , Zhuhai.

How on earth this tradition comes to our shores?

I think after you identify your reason of erecting a Christmas tree in your homes , you would have ideas already how this tradition comes into our lives. Yes, we cannot deny that this tradition emerged from the ancient worships. 

But, the modern one was started by Martin Luther (the founder of Protestant) when he brought a fir tree to home and decorated it on a Christmas' eve on around 16th century. Then, he told stories to children using the Christmas tree he decorated. Then, Germans start to bring home evergreen trees to erect modern Christmas tree  and decorated it with candles.

On 18th century, German immigrants brought this tradition to Pennsylvania , America. However, Americans saw it as paganism symbolic. The New England Puritans even banned any decorated trees, Christmas carols or any hanging decorations in homes during Christmas as they called these tradition to be idolatry. This was undermined after a Germany sketched Queen Victoria , her husband and their children playing next to a Christmas tree. Well, whatever the royals did were seen to be fashionable by the Britain and even East Coast Americans. Then, the Christmas tree became slowly spread in America. The Christmas tree ornaments that was arrived from German had become more and more popular in America since then. The Europeans usually had their Christmas tree only at four feet height while the Americans like it to be larger, from floor to ceiling usually. 

 The rest of the history, we know that once Americans have it, the worldwide will too. Nowadays, people around the world just get more creative when it comes to decorating Christmas trees and the tree does make Christmas becomes merrier and more joyous to the already joyous festive. 

TALL Christmas tree at Zhuhai Port Plaza..there even had Santa Claus riding with reindeer.  At the other side of the tree.......

was a winter illustrations...

Sunday, 23 December 2012

0 Second time around, Manila

I am late bloomer for everything. I only had chances to travel after i was married and having a child. I only start blogging when i find that though i am married and have a son, i do still have time to sit on couch in the living room with tv remote control never stop clicking for info on particular channels. There is not much tv shows for too much watching. That is what you have to swallow when you picked up Astro as your tv cabel. Live with it. So, on those boring nights when there is no good tv , and still can do stuff while Steven and i whining about our jobs on each other, i found that i can find times to write a blog. 

So that is why maybe you had been to Manila for the zillion times, and I was there only for the timid second.
Recently,i'd been to Manila again after going back from China. This time around i was there for the ultimate shopping. You and i know that it is a notably shopping paradise. I was in to jump in for the crazy Christmas shopping there. I was not surprise at all when numbers of my friends from university too was there at the same time i was there. 
Behind Sherry and I was wholesale shop for shoes.

In Baclaran. Most of shops here sell for wholesales only.  If you are doing retail, it is best that you have your travel buddy with you all the time so you are buying more and usually will pay for lower prices. It certainly does not looked like any paradise ,ey. You have got to drop all your sophisticatedness to be here for it is hot and humid, traffic jams is common and you can accidentally push a people with huge shopping bag without saying sorry.

You could never know what you planning to shop. Yes, you have whole of shopping list in your smartphones. But, when you've in the 'paradise of shopping' , you find yourself not being able to take it out from your handbag, because it was too crowded especially during Christmas season. Most of the shop offered low price on anything. ANYTHING.

So, i figured that next year i will bring my family to have a shopping spree here and  it's going to be like an annual shopping trip. Duh, wouldn't we 'd be bored someday?  I don't know about that but i will try my best to make it happen at least for next year, as a start. 

By the way, we still find time in the morning to visit the Manila Ocean Park in Manila Bay. It is not larger than  the oceanariums  in Sentosa Singapore but it was still a great place for kids and school children to have educational tours with their teachers. We visited the oceanarium, jellyfish and the sea lion show only as you can choose what do you want to see according to the packages offered at the ticket counter. 

 We were the earliest on that day queueing up for admission ticket. 

 I thought that the most interesting part visiting this ocean park is the jellyfish. They put jellyfish in a tank according to the type and there were lights that would change colors automatically. And give those jellyfish these looks......

They called these as the dancing fairies of the sea.

I am always terrified by jellyfish. Never thought that they can be beautiful too with some colored lights. 

Our final tour was to the  sea lion show which is just at the outdoor foyer. They had two sea lions for actions on that day, i am not sure however how many they put on for the show on other days but , the sea lions seemed following commands  very well from the trainer and very audience-friendly. Indeed, right ? AFfter years of doing it.

Some random facts i found from a souvenir shop. Wah! 

So, trip to Manila could never failed to interest me and makes me want to come back again and again some time soon. The drawback now is that there will longer direct flight to Phillipines from KK. It was just announced by Air Asia early this December. So, one has to take transit from KL which the flight ticket to KL is way expensive if you know what i mean. Why man? Why ? Is it because there are so much tourist from Sabah going to Phillipines instead of KL? So, is this a way to boost more vacation within country? If this is true, this just lame. So lame, okay. 

By the way, i am enjoying whatever i can get now and all the stuff that i had shopped from this vacation. Until then, thank you for stopping by to read this entry. 


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