Thursday, April 01, 2010

Qingming Festival 清明节

Qing Ming or Tomb Sweeping Day is a traditional Chinese festival on the 104th day after the winter solstice (or the 15th day from the Spring Equinox), usually occurring around April 5 of the Gregorian calendar (see Chinese calendar).

It is observed in Singapore and coinciding with good Friday, traffic around cemeteries, crematorium & columbarium are a little crazy. There are hordes of people and as fire is involved, be extra careful!

I was at Mandai Crematorium & Columbarium Complex today to visit my late father.
Coinciding with Good Friday, the roads were packed and there was utterly no traffic control at all, making transportation to the far away location a nightmare.

From the exit of the expressway, there is a traffic jam that will take you 40 minutes to get to the Mandai crematorium & columbarium. The place was crowded and full of people. I would recommend not bringing your infants and handicapped old folks as I do not think the place can handle crowds. There are people lighting joss sticks at the isles praying.

The place is full of smoke from the burning of paper and other things, elderly with respiratory problems should  take note. There seemed to be a lot of children as well. And the children are ill behaved and running around this otherwise should be peaceful resting final resting place for many. With the fire, smoke and large crowd, I really doubt that there is any form of fire safety laws that this place has not broken. Furthermore, if a fire did break out, I don't think a fire engine could get there in time with all that traffic.

Do not bring too much things to burn, there are a lot of other people there, and the flame is very hot.
Avoid going on weekends and public holidays. Go early morning before going to work.
Do not bring your children or old people if you plan to go there during the weekend. Traffic will be bad, there will be lots of people, fire and smoke.

Be considerate, please do not litter. And watch your children!

-- Iron Bowl

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