Chai Bee Chai Chek Lai Chee Kay

(1st Version in Hokkien)

Eh Lo Kay

Chai Bee Chai Chek, Lai Chee Kay

Chee Kay, Gau Kiow Kare

Chee Kow, Gau Booi Meh

Chee Thow Sneh, Yang Lau Peh

Chee Chow War,  Hor Lang Meh..

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(1st Version in English)

Eh Lo Kay

Plants rice, plants paddy, to feed the chickens

Rear a cockerel, it crows at dawn

Rear a dog, it barks at night

Raise a son, he will carry his father

Raise a daughter and you will be scorned!

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(2nd Version in Hokkien)

Eh Lo Kay

Tho Bee Tho Chek, Lai Chee Kay

Chee Chow War,  Par Lang Ay

Chee Thow Sneh, Kor Lau Peh.

 

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(2nd Version in English)

Eh Lo Kay

Beg for rice, beg for paddy, to feed the chickens

Raise a daughter, she belongs to another

Raise a son, he will take care of his father.

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About this ditty:~

This is a traditional ‘Hokkien’ ditty that emphasizes the age old Chinese preference for sons rather than daughters. Sons as they believe can serve as a crutch in one’s old age, whereas a daughter is considered a liability to be given away when the time comes for her to get married! The expression ” Eh Lo Kay” has been described by some to be a swing! (yet to be verified)

The author/owner has compiled for record, a collection of early Hokkien sayings, proverbs, rhymes and ditties to capture the essence and spirit of his hoi polloi, a community originating from the southern province of Fujian, China where individuals climbed aboard bum boats, crossing the South China Sea to settle in faraway lands to escape the brewing civil unrest and a way out from hardship carrying along with them in their journey, nothing except their trademark ponytails and their beliefs, very much rooted in Confucianism. These ditties retell their story and their lifestyle way back then so that the younger generation can gain an insight and foothold to their origin..

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