Category: Superstitions

Noodles for Longevity

Spaghetti Bolegnase, Photo by PH Morton

Noodles for Longevity

I was watching an episode of Father is Strange last weekend when there was a scene where the family insisted Joon-Young, who finally passed his civil service exam after many tries, to slurp the whole of the noodle strands rather than biting into it.

I was intrigued enough that I googled what it meant.  🙂

Apparently it is a Chinese tradition (or superstition), which seems to have a widespread effect that neighbouring countries had adapted it.  I know in the Philippines, eating noodles is a must during birthdays.  The long strand means longevity of life.  I was not aware though that you had to slurp the whole thing into your mouth and then chew, rather than biting a bit of it as you chew.

Anyway, it is encouraged to slurp the strand in all its length so that one does not cut off one’s span of life.

Thank goodness, this superstition is applied only on birthdays and other milestone celebrations.

I couldn’t be going to restaurants, especially posh ones, and slurping my pasta down my throat. It would be unethical and extremely embarrassing.  LOL


Curing Cramps a la Korean

Curing Cramps a la Korean

I have been watching quite a few Korean dramas lately and I often see something rather strange practised time and again by some of the drama characters.

I am talking about touching their tongue with their index finger and then their nose, they do this a few times.

Currently I am watching Reply 1997, a very good coming of age drama which I can highly recommend.

One of the boys had a girl sleeping soundly with her head on his legs.  Instead of waking her up,he started licking his index finger and then touching the tip of his nose several times.

I google about this strange thing and came up with how to cure a cramp a la Korean.  It figures then that the boy had a cramp from the weight of the girl’s head across his legs.

I will try it if it works the next time I get a leg cramp! 😉


Money Plant

Money Plant

Money Plant, Photo by JMorton

Peter and I got these money plants at Ikea in Wembley late last year.  I have had money plants in the past but they tend to die after a while. Perhaps because If I don’t forget to water them, I used to over-water them thinking it would save me watering them again for a couple of months!  🙁 🙁  What can I say? I was busy then, I worked full time and run a house but now that I am retired, I have all the time in the world.

And hopefully, the money plants become true to its name and bring me, or rather us, a lot of money. Why is it called a money plant? To hazard a guess, I think it has something to do with the shape of the leaves. Circular like coins. Chinese Fung Shui seems to advice that round and circular things attract wealth. Well true or not, these money plants are so pretty in our window sill.

Money plant is also known as a jade plant but its scientific name is crassula ovata.  It belongs to the succulent family and makes a perfect houseplant.  Apparently with proper care, the money plant can have a very longevity.  I saw a mature money plants whilst in the Philippines a couple of months ago.  The plant was really pretty, with thickened branches and jade green fat leaves.  It reminded me of a bonsai,  very structured.


Moth – Superstition and more

Moth on curtain

Moth on curtain, photo by PH Morton

Moth – Superstition and more

Isn’t the moth above beautiful?!!!  The photo was taken by’s resident photographer, PH Morton.

I was in our study three nights ago, on my computer, when a moth circled and circled me and then stop right above my head in my curtain.

There was a superstition about moth that they are a conduit of the dead and bringer of some news and comfort.

I thought of my grandfather immediately.  He passed away twenty-odd years ago.  Actually he was/ is the person I could trust most in the world.  He had never let me down.  I was a horrid child, who grew up into an ultra-sensitive, self-centred little madam and yet he loved me and was really proud of me.  I heard him once saying to someone that I was not just a teacher but a professor in university.  He was so proud!

Anyway talking about the moth, lately I was worrying about family, especially those in the Philippines.  I hope the moth was as a reincarnation of my grandfather, lol, who was there to assure me that everything was going to be alright.

The next morning, the moth was still clasped contentedly on my curtain.  I called Peter to free it into the wild of our garden.  Goodbye, Lolo, I am sure everything will sort itself up.

Superstitions: Wedding & Marriage

Happy is the bride the sun shines on.
– English Proverb

Most of our customs and traditions are based on superstitions. Even in this  modern age, these everyday customs and traditions have continued to flourish.

There are some superstitions that are so wacky that they have been filed under the archaic cabinets of x-Files, never to be seen again unless you really want to.

Superstitions: Wedding & Marriage

Carrying the bride There is a superstition that says, the first one to enter the marital house will be the master of it. Therefore, a solution was found; they had to enter together. Thus, the groom carries his bride over the threshold.

Nun & Monks Apparently the last person you wanted to see on your wedding day is either a nun or a monk. Meeting one of them will mean you are in for a barren union.

There is a Polish tradition that is lucky to get married on any of the months with ‘R’ on it.

Something old, something new,
Something borrowed, something blue.

Superstition: Itching & Scratching

Superstition: Itching & Scratching

I do get a lot of allergies, I scratch a lot.  But do you know that there are some superstitions attached to wherever and whatever itches?

My only advice, of course, is that when something itches, do not scratch too hard as it is not good for your skin, scratching can be very soothing but done with prolong time can leave scratches and scars.

Anyway, some of the superstitions are universal, I think.  I am always glad and hopeful when my hand itches, because I have heard before that you will come into money! 🙂  (still waiting for the money!)

Here is a random list:

Itchy hand –  you will receive money/cash soon but not so easy as that.  Apparently it has to be the right palm that is itchy; left palm means money is going out.  So ensure to moisturise that left hand/palm, if you don’t feel like spending … too much ;

Itchy ear – someone remembered you and talking about you.

Itchy foot – you are going to travel into new horizon, to boldly go where you have not been before.

Itchy eye – aside from a possible onset of conjunctivitis, itchy eye means there will be some laughter or tears coming your way, hopefully you will be so happy you start to tear up.

Itchy Knee – you will visit a church that you have never been before and kneel down in prayer!  What an adventure!

Itchy Elbow – this one is not nice if you are already married or in a happy and stable relationship; itchy elbow means you will wake up with a strange bedfellow!

Itchy Nose –  I get this a lot lately.  Apparently this means you will be kissed – a lot, run into a gatepost, or shake hands with a fool. 🙂

Itchy Stomach – you are hungry and will eat pudding.  Yum!!!

Itchy Back –  how strange  is this? … butter will be cheap when grass grows there… Not only that you will turn into a pasture for bovines, an itchy back could also mean a disappointment is coming your way.

Just remember, we live in a modern society, superstitions are old world or are they?


Da A Fu – Great Good Fortune

Da A Fu – Great Good Fortune

Peter got me these figurines as a memento of 2015 Chinese Lunar New Year. These two figurines are so cute with their plump rosy cheeks and big almond eyes.  They are also painted in bright colourful hues of red and blue.  These little figures are of two chubby children, a boy and a girl.

These figurines come with their own legend called the Da a Fu, which means great good fortune.

DSCN9546Once upon a time, a couple of big fierce hungry green lions were preying on children in Wuxi, Jiangsu.

It was unfortunate that fighting heroes were rather scarce at that time.  So the villagers’ only recourse was to pray to their deities for help and deliverance.  Their prayers were eventually heard by the celestial Jade Emperor, who sent two spirits, who manifested in the form of a boy and a girl.

Through cunning, wit and skill they were able to vanquish the two lions much to the joy and relief of the village people.

Ever since,  clay figurines were modeled as a homage and to show respect to the two children. Often the clay figurines are shown to hold the green lions in their arms.

Kung Hei Fat Choy 2015

“Gong Xi Fa Cai”


“Kung Hei Fat Choy”

19 February is fast approaching, which means it is the start of a new calendar year for the Chinese.

As our Chinese brothers and sisters would wish each and everyone, let us, from GlobalGranary, wish you Kung Hei Fat Choy, translated as Happy New Year but actually it means Congratulations and Wishing you Prosperity.

During the course of this week, we will be posting Chinese New Year materials such as superstitions, Feng Shui, stories, about the lamb/sheep/goat/antelope – animal representation of the year 2015.

Actually 2015 or Year of the Goat is Peter’s year.  We will be blogging things that Peter and those born in the year of the goat/sheep had to do to maximise good fortune and luck for 2015.

There are 12 zodiac animals and each animal take turns under a 12 year cycle.

Those born under the year of the goat as an example are from 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015 (just add 12 to get to the next cycle)

If your birthday falls due under the year of the goat/sheep, your character traits are said to be one of gentleness, peace, kindness and calmness.

The lucky numbers are 2 & 7 or any number containing 2 & 7 like 27, 72, 270, etc.. (get that lotto!)

Lucky months are August and November.

And the lucky flowers which I must say are great favourites of mine are carnation and primrose.

If you decide to overhaul your wardrobe, the lucky colours for 2015 are red, brown and purple.

New Year Superstitions: Fruits


13 (14 really) fruits for good fortune for the new year. Photo by PH Morton

oh oh, it seems we Filipinos are doing it wrong.  It is not supposed to be 13 but 8.  Eight is enough!  Eight means infinity.  8 is a good luck number for the Chinese, who we adopted this tradition of fruit good luck for the New Year!

I have to rethink my fruit display next year or rather end of this year.  OmG, I have to make a decision what to include in my fruit trog.  I have about 15 this year!

~The pressure!

Anyway, whatever the numbers of fruits in your  basket, I hope and wish you a fantastic, fabulous and fruitful (lol) 2015!

Read below some interesting legends about New Year traditions!

New Year Superstitions: Fruits

Round fruits bring luck this New Year? Traditions explained

Posted at 12/30/2010 2:23 PM | Updated as of 12/31/2010 11:41 AM

MANILA, Philippines – Filipinos have traditionally observed serving certain food items such as round-shaped fruits on New Year’s eve, as influenced by the Chinese.

The belief that certain foods bring luck and good fortune is shared by many, but there are some who join the “fad” not knowing the real reason behind it.

Chinese entrepreneurs Gerard and Jeric Chua of famed hopia maker Eng Bee Tin talked to dzMM’s “Todo-Todo, Walang Preno” program on Wednesday to give light to the meaning behind the tradition of using certain foods at this time of the year.

1. Round-shaped fruits: Eight, and not 12 or 13, round-shaped fruits must be served. “8 lang talaga ang number of fruits kasi 8 ang lucky number ng mga Chinese. It means infinity,” said Gerard.

2. Pineapple fruit on windows and doors: Due to its numerous “eyes”, the pineapple symbolizes an eye for successful career and opportunities.

3. Tikoy: “Ang tikoy kasi malagkit, matamis at bilog. Malagkit symbolizes unity in the family all year round. Matamis symbolizes close relationships, and bilog, ibig sabihin ay pera,” Gerald explained.

4. Fortune/flower cake: It is believed to bring about the blooming of character, personality and relationship among family members.

5. Spring Rolls: These symbolize unity, cooperation and understanding in the family all-year round.

6. Hopia. The bean-filled pastry hopia symbolizes hope and eternity.

7. Even numbers: All food items must come in even numbers except for the number 4. “Four kasi sa Chinese ay ‘si’, meaning death. ’Yung 9 naman, inverted 6. Omen number ang 666 kaya ayaw talaga ng mga Chinese,” said Gerard.

Myths debunked

The Chua brothers, also volunteer firefighters, debunked various food myths.

1. Myth: Serving chicken or any poultry product on Media Noche, the traditional New Year’s eve feast, will bring poverty and hardships.

“Hindi naman totoo ‘yun. Sa panahon ngayon, lagi nang inihahanda ‘yung chicken sa New Year,” said Jeric.

2. Myth: Don’t serve fruits with black seeds as these will bring bad fortune.

The Chua brothers said that the color of a fruit’s seed will never determine your fortune.

3. Myth: Serving shrimps and prawns during Media Noche brings bad luck for these are known to be bottom dwellers.

The brothers said that prawns symbolize prosperity and good health.

Gerard and Jeric reminded the public not to be overly attached to traditions.
“Para sa amin, hindi naman talaga importante na sundin iyon. Basta sama-sama buong pamilya at may nakakain ay sasagana naman for the next year,” Gerard ended.


For maximum good fortune in terms of money 😉  it is also advised to hang circular fruits like grapes around the house especially around windows!