When living in a Chinese village, one often felt that distance between the individual houses was fairly decent. Not many houses were too close together. My grandmother's house was "within shouting distance from my uncle Lau Yung Chiong's house". Some how because we lived by the river side, our voices could be carried loud and clear across the padi fields. Aunt would always call grandma to come over for some noodles whenever she slaughtered a chicken, especially for my grandmother's birthday.
Here's a story related to hens and their eggs.
And in those long gone days theft was almost unknown. And no one would have the bad name of being long handed (Foochow saying).
But there was one man who was rather lazy and he never held on to a steady job. He was even too lazy to go to school when he was young. So he ended up almost illiterate.
Uncles, cousins, and every one we knew of would help him find a job. He took a job as a boat man, but he found the job too simple and boring.
He took a job as a carpenter but he was lazy in carrying wood.
In other words, he was quite spoilt. He would wake up late in the morning because he would have a few extra beers at night. And that made him a very irregular rubber tapper.
When it was time to smoke the rubber sheets, he would come around to give a helping hand. He would be happy carrying a thing or two. But he would be happiest having the meals together with the other rubber tappers who brought rubber sheets to my grandmother's smoke house in Ah nang Chong.
Now, my all my aunts reared chickens. And he would always be the culprit for taking the extra egg in the morning.
Well since he was a relative. everyone closed an eye and said that,"Hopefully the hens would just lay that extra egg for someone who does not like to work for a living."
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