The Mid-Autumn Festival, known as the Moon Festival or Zhongqiu Jie, is a cherished holiday celebrated in many Asian countries. It falls on the 15th day of the eighth lunar month, usually in September or October. This festival symbolizes unity, gratitude, and the beauty of family bonds. While it may bring to mind images of bright lanterns, delectable mooncakes, and the full moon, at its core, it’s about sharing moments with loved ones.
A Time for Reunion
In a fast-paced world where families often lead busy lives and live far apart, the Mid-Autumn Festival serves as a poignant reminder of the importance of family and togetherness. It’s a day when people make an extra effort to come together, whether they’re returning to their hometowns or simply gathering under the same roof for a hearty meal.
In China, where the festival has deep cultural roots, children and grandchildren often visit their parents and grandparents. This tradition beautifully showcases the concept of filial piety, where respect and care for one’s elders are paramount. During this time, generations bond over stories, share laughter, and savor delicious mooncakes.
A Culinary Delight: Mooncakes
No Mid-Autumn Festival is complete without mooncakes, sweet round pastries with intricate designs on their crusts. The mooncake’s round shape symbolizes completeness and unity, while the intricate patterns often carry deep meanings.
Mooncakes come in various flavors, from traditional lotus seed paste with salted egg yolk to more modern interpretations like ice cream mooncakes. The lighter taste of tea frequently counterbalances the richness of these treats, creating a perfect balance of flavors.
Chasing the Moon: Lanterns and Legend
The festival wouldn’t be complete without the whimsical sight of colorful lanterns illuminating the night. Children, in particular, revel in the opportunity to carry lanterns of all shapes and sizes. The lanterns symbolize hope, as they are released into the night sky with the belief that they will bring good fortune.
The festival also has a rich mythology tied to it. One of the most famous legends involves the beautiful Chang’e, who, after consuming the elixir of immortality, floated to the moon and became the Moon Goddess. Her tale, as well as that of the Jade Rabbit who resides on the moon, adds an element of wonder and enchantment to the celebration.
An Extraordinary Ordinary Day
In essence, the Mid-Autumn Festival is a day of appreciating life’s simple pleasures and acknowledging the importance of family. Amidst the busyness of our modern lives, it serves as a reminder that some of the most cherished moments occur during ordinary days spent with loved ones.
As we gaze at the full moon during the Mid-Autumn Festival, let’s not forget the beauty of an ordinary day filled with love, laughter, and shared stories. Just like the soft glow of the moon in the night sky, the bonds we strengthen during this special time can brighten our lives all year. So, whether you’re enjoying mooncakes, lighting lanterns, or simply sharing a meal, may your Mid-Autumn Festival be an extraordinary celebration of life’s ordinary joys.
How do you celebrate moon cake festival in your country? Share your experience in the comment below.
My parents owned and operated a tinsmith business at No: 22 Chong Ah Peng Street, right in the town center. Surprsingly, the shophouse was still in its original condition until 2019 when it was dismantled and rebuilt. In 2018, I was given the unique honor of conducting a photoshoot of this same shophouse featuring all seven members who resided here back in 1958. It truly felt like divine providence when all seven of us who resided here came back together for such a historic and exclusive photo session in Tanjong Malim!
At that time, we were all children – I myself being just six when our initial photographs were taken in 1958. For our 2018 photoshoot, each one of us faithfully recreated that same tableau frozen in time fifty-plus years earlier.
One night, I experienced an extraordinary dream journey that transported me into another dimension. I saw amazing beings that were impossible to describe with words. They had vibrant colors and complex shapes that were beyond imagination. It was a truly unforgettable sight.
As I traversed this enigmatic landscape, an uneasiness began to develop within. With every step, I walked deeper into its bizarre world and was unable to discern its peculiar inhabitants’ motivations or intentions—their unblinking stares left an uneasiness that left me unsettled.
Dreams often unfolded like clockwork, and my anxiety rose with each new reality that appeared before me. Soon it became evident that I was trapped within this surreal dimension with no apparent means of escape; panic ensued as my heart raced as I desperately looked around for any sign of escape, yet all its boundaries seemed endlessly expansive.
Fear was reaching its zenith when I was abruptly shaken awake, just when it felt as if I couldn’t bear any longer. Transitioning from that unfamiliar world back into my familiar bedroom left me shaking with fear before realizing it had all been just a nightmare dream.
Dreams serve as a powerful reminder of the mystery our minds can create when we close them at night, even when seemingly strange or disconcerting images come flooding in from out of nowhere.
“I’m deeply thankful to God that today, my book ‘2 Corinthians’ has reached the prestigious Amazon Best Seller status. This achievement is a testament to the support of readers like you and the impact of the message within the book. It reinforces the importance of faith and dedication in this journey, and I couldn’t have done it without your continued support and encouragement. I hope this book continues to inspire and touch the hearts of many as it has today.”
In an age when stories are often shared through social media updates, reading a memoir is something truly captivating. A memoir allows readers to travel back in time and experience another’s journey firsthand.
Welcome to my journey as a doctor. I want to share my memoir with you, which spans 68 years of memories and meaningful experiences.
From Birth to Retirement
This memoir begins in 1952 with the author’s birth—an unassuming and humble start that would ultimately touch many lives. Through each chapter, you will witness personal and professional development across milestones celebrated and endured along the way.
Tanjong Malim to New Zealand
Growing up in Tanjong Malim, the author recalls European missionaries’ visits, which brought with them not only gospel preaching but also entertaining movie nights that left an indelible mark on young minds.
The tale then takes an international leap, traveling across continents to New Zealand, where the author pursued higher education. A change of scenery provides new opportunities and challenges, opening up further explorations of faith and purpose.
Addressing the Asian Financial Crisis
This memoir transports you back to 1997, an eventful year marked by the Asian Financial Crisis that affected Malaysia with depreciating currency and stock market changes, leaving residents reeling financially until an opportunity presented itself: an affordable house in Ipoh.
Bible College Years
As the year 2000 unfolds, a pivotal change takes place as the author embarks on his theological studies at Laidlaw Bible College (formerly the Bible College of New Zealand). These years of theological studies, academic growth, and spiritual enrichment would lay a strong foundation for his life of service and devotion.
Exploring the Challenges of Medicine
Once he completed his theological studies, the author returned to medicine, this time in Wellington, New Zealand. While his medical career flourished successfully, personal sacrifices had to be made when family members took different paths in life. Facing challenges such as on-call 24/7 services and managing an outpatient clinic exposed what truly motivates the author.
An Accident Occurs
As we explore this memoir, a pivotal moment arises. A post-Christmas dinner in 2019 turns into an unexpected accident, leading to a fall that caused paralysis and ultimately led to life-threatening tetraplegia and life-threatening circumstances. From there comes an amazing medical journey filled with scans, spinal surgery, and rehabilitation. A test of faith and spiritual growth.
Rehabilitation and Recuperation
As the author begins intensive rehabilitation, his story takes an optimistic turn as he fights back against the global COVID-19 pandemic and attempts to regain mobility. This chapter serves as a testament to human perseverance and unflinching support from loved ones.
With Thanks from a Grateful Heart
Gratefulness overflows as the author expresses his thanks to God and those who helped during a time of need. Not just medical professionals but also friends, family, and a community that rallied around.
Living in God’s Goodness
In his memoir, the author revisits faith’s message as he recalls missionaries who once spread it. Faith and God’s enduring grace are acknowledged as sources of strength.
Retired and Renewed
In 2020, the author retires after 48 years in medical practice, marking an exciting new phase of life full of opportunities for writing, preaching, and self-discovery. This chapter represents not an ending but rather a beginning.
An Exciting Adventure Well-Traveled
“Memoirs of a Doctor” offers you an engrossing journey into the life of a medical professional, theologian, and resilient soul. His tale reminds you to cherish every moment in life while keeping faith at its center.
The memoir concludes with an epilogue, in which the author reflects upon his writing process, the pandemic outbreak, and all of life’s blessings, reinforcing hope and resilience and leaving readers feeling thankful for all of life’s complexities and turns.
As we conclude this chapter of “Memoirs of a Doctor,” it’s wise to reflect upon Isaiah 40:26’s words: “Look up into the heavens; Who created all these stars? His power and might bring out one after another like an army; calling each by its name.” Not a single star goes missing under His watchful care!
May this memoir inspire you to look back on your own journey, take stock of all that lies around you, and find comfort in human resilience.
The author wishes to express his heartfelt thanks for sharing this journey with family and friends, medical colleagues, mentors, and spiritual guides. Their help has been instrumental in shaping this memoir.
About the Author
This author is a retired doctor, preacher, writer, and blogger with a heart filled with gratitude and a strong passion for sharing life’s lessons through words.
Sharing this journey will inspire others. Please leave any thoughts or reflections in the comment section below; your voice exemplifies storytelling’s lasting power.
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Welcome to my travel diary as I recount my incredible 5-day journey to Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. This tropical paradise, known for its cultural richness and natural wonders, left an indelible mark on my heart. Join me as I take you through each day of this unforgettable adventure.
Day 1: Arriving in Paradise
The warm breeze and the blue South China Sea immediately attracted me to Kota Kinabalu. The anticipation of exploring this tropical gem was palpable as I checked into my cozy accommodations at the Hilton Hotel. The adventure had begun!
Day 2: Cultural Immersion at Mari Mari Cultural Village
On the second day, I went on a trip to the Mari Mari cultural village that taught me about Sabah’s indigenous cultures and left a lasting impression on my heart. Mari Mari Cultural Village is just a short drive from the Hotel.
Reaching Mari Mari Cultural Village was a breeze.. As we approached, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of anticipation. What awaited me inside these traditional houses, nestled in the heart of the rainforest?
Stepping into Mari Mari Cultural Village felt like stepping into a time machine. The guided tour was my passport to the rich tapestry of Sabah’s indigenous cultures. Our first stop was the house of the Rungus tribe, where the intricate bead work and woven baskets caught my eye. Our guide shared stories of her people’s history and lifestyle.
We moved on to the houses of the Bajau, Lundayeh, Murut, and Dusun tribes, each distinct in its architecture, artifacts, and way of life. It was a privilege to witness firsthand the preservation of these ancient traditions. The guide offered us a window into their worlds, answering questions and engaging in enlightening conversations.
The highlight of the visit was undoubtedly the cultural performances. The stage came alive with vibrant colors and rhythmic beats. Dancers from the various tribes donned their traditional attire, and the atmosphere was filled with the melodies of gongs and drums. The highlight of the show featured the Murut dancers jumping in and out of moving bamboos sticks without getting their feet caught!
The dances were more than just performances. They were living traditions that told stories of love, unity, and the connection between the indigenous people and their cultures.
After immersing myself in the rich cultural experience, it was time to tantalize my taste buds. Lunch was a feast of Sabah’s culinary delights. From the fragrant aroma of bamboo chicken to the exotic flavors of local vegetables, every dish served as a tribute to the region’s diverse cuisine.
As I left Mari Mari Cultural Village, I carried with me more than just photographs and souvenirs. I had gained a profound appreciation for the diverse cultures that call Sabah home. This incredible experience was not only educational but also deeply moving. It reminded me of the importance of preserving and celebrating indigenous heritage.
Mari Mari Cultural Village is a must-visit. It’s a place where history, traditions, and hospitality converge, leaving you with a lasting appreciation for the cultural mosaic that defines Sabah.
Day 3: Sabah Museum
Day three’s highlight was a visit to the Sabah Museum, a place where history, natural wonders, and indigenous heritage converged. In the main hall, a magnificent whale skeleton stood proudly, serving as a formidable guardian. The museum tour guide’s explanation of the exhibits deepened my understanding of Sabah’s unique identity.
It was a journey of self-discovery, and cultural immersion into the enduring spirit of the Sabahan’s rich heritage, and culture. The museum left me with a profound appreciation for the wonders of Sabah’s past and present.
Immersed in History
The Sabah Museum, established in 1965, serves as a guardian of Sabah’s heritage, preserving centuries-old artifacts, manuscripts, and traditions. It was a privilege to explore this treasure trove of knowledge.
A Kaleidoscope of Cultures
One of the most enchanting aspects of the Sabah Museum is its ability to showcase the rich and diverse cultural tapestry of the state. It was like embarking on a journey to discover Sabah’s soul, one gallery at a time.
Borneo Heritage Gallery
My journey commenced in the Borneo Heritage Gallery, where I was introduced to the indigenous communities that call Sabah home. The displays were intricate, providing a window into the lifestyles, rituals, and beliefs of these communities. From the fearsome headhunters of the past to the vibrant artistry of today’s indigenous people, this gallery paints a vivid picture of Sabah’s native cultures.
Islamic Civilization Gallery
Next, I ventured into the Islamic Civilization Gallery, which offered insights into the influence of Islam on Sabah’s culture, education, and daily life. It was a testament to the harmonious coexistence of different faiths in the region, a living testament to the spirit of unity.
Chinese and South China Sea Gallery
The Chinese and South China Sea Gallery explores Sabah’s Chinese heritage and their important role in shaping the state’s history through migration. It was a testament to the resilience and contributions of the Chinese community.
Colonial Era Gallery
The Colonial Era Gallery was a poignant reminder of Sabah’s history under British and Japanese occupations. The artifacts and documents on display shed light on this transformative period, highlighting the resilience of the Sabahans in the face of adversity.
Beyond the cultural treasures, the Sabah Museum houses a Natural History Gallery that introduced me to the state’s awe-inspiring flora and fauna. It celebrated Sabah’s lush rainforests and the mesmerizing marine life that graces its shores. It was a reminder of the delicate balance between humans and nature.
The Sabah Museum visit is an unforgettable experience. It’s a journey through time, a celebration of culture, and a reminder of the beauty that lies within Sabah’s diverse heritage.
I was absolutely delighted by the incredible buffet dinner showcasing the extraordinary flavors of the Sabahan cuisine that tantalized my taste buds. The Gala Night that followed was a true spectacle, with mesmerizing performances, music, and the chance to connect with fellow travelers. It was a night of camaraderie and unforgettable memories.
Day 4: Island Hopping Thrills
On day 4, I embarked on the Sabah Island Hopping Tour, starting my journey from Sutera Harbour, just a short bus ride away from the hotel. The adventure kicked off with an adrenaline-pumping speedboat ride to Manukan Island, where the waves gave us quite a thrill. Once we reached our destination, I was greeted by the sight of a pristine beach and crystal-clear waters. While some of my fellow travelers opted for snorkeling, I chose to relax on the beach, taking in the stunning surroundings.
Our next stop was Sapi Island, and after a delicious lunch, we hopped back on the boat for more island exploration. However, our adventure took an unexpected turn as our boat experienced a mechanical problem while out at sea. Despite the initial scare, our capable crew managed to ensure our safe return to Sutera Harbour, adding an unexpected twist to an otherwise memorable island-hopping experience.
Day 5: Home Sweet Home
Day 5, checked out of Hotel after breakfast to catch the return flight to KLIA.
In just 5 days, Kota Kinabalu, had stolen my heart. Whether you seek cultural immersion or thrilling island escapades, this tropical paradise promises an abundance of unforgettable memories.
Have you visited Sabah? Share you adventure on the comments below.
Dr ANDREW C S KOH
Meet Dr. Andrew C S Koh—a multi-talented individual with a diverse range of roles and achievements. He excels as an author, publisher, blogger, podcaster, Bible teacher, cardiologist, and medical director. With an impressive repertoire of 40 published books to his name, he has proven his prowess as a prolific writer. Additionally, he pursued theology studies at Laidlaw College in Auckland, New Zealand, further enriching his knowledge and expertise.
Memoirs of a Doctor:
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