A short story about a successful man who forgets his roots as a kampong boy in Tanjung Rhu, and only realizes its importance and how much he misses it after his mother passes away. The poignant/sad story demonstrates the cultural circumstances and dilemmas about identity which people face in Southeast Asia. it also looks at the conflict/struggle and tension between the traditional and modern society in Singapore through the relationship between and his mother. Themes Traditional habits and ceremonies . modish/current patterns and behavior. Tanjong Rhu is one of the famous short stories wrote by minfong . This story is focusing on Singaporean chinese life which contrasts in terms of traditional and modern. Tanjong Rhu is a port in Singapore where the writer sets as the place that the protagonist of the story spent his childhood in. The main theme of this story is the distinction between traditional habits and ceremonies and modish patterns and behavior. in the story, chinese tradition as praying to the ancestor and the dead has been mentionedas an important element. from the description of the writer, we know that the protagonist, mother values the importance of this traditional practice. This can be pro%ed by of something is to be done,- she said with the loud solemnity which she reserved for the altar room, it must be done properly. if i am to visit your place of work, must tell your father properly.- carefully, she unlocked the top drawer of her mother of pear inlaid cabinet, where she kept all the paraphernaliafor tending the altar$ tiny porcelain wine cups, gold leafed sheets of ceremonial money, candles and joss sticks and countless packets of incense.- As we read through the story, we know that father of the main character, !r.#i has passed away long ago. The lines mentioned above shows that grandma pays attention on praying to the ancestor and dead as she keeps all the necessary things for praying and arrange in the drawer. As a traditional thinker, she thinks that it is important to let !r. #i+s father know what those li%ings do e%en though he has died as she says must tell your father properly-chinese traditions, praying to the ancestor and the dead is important to every family. This is a practice whereby chinese believes that the ancestor and the dead will bless the family. 0n the other hand, did not think this was important so he asked the daughter, to hurry the grandma up so that they could reach his office on time. appealed to the grandmother to let her pray to the grandfather since her grandmother was taking too much time. the grandmother did not trust the granddaughter of doing a proper job. She questioned ming if she knew how many times to bow, how to speak to her grandfather, what candles to light and what wine to offer. The grandmother insisted to 1ing that i must wait for her to finish praying to her grandfather. She didnt mind making the son be late for work. The modern younger generation cares more for making to work on time while the older generation cares more for proper praying traditions. The grandmother didnt want to let the granddaughter pray for fear that she would pray without following all the traditional practices to save time. however, thing said doesnt matter. my father waiting for you. would make him late for work.- The young only think of getting to work on time rather than observing traditions properly. instead,his mother said Tell your father that his father is waiting for me.-i did not pray to his father like his mother did. he no longer practised this chinese tradition. he did not talk to his father like he used to when he was a boy, talking away in quick antonese, his words only just keeping up with his steps as he ran alongside his father. At that moment, the words would not come and his father was gone.he stayed silent, waiting as hismother slowly put everything away in her desk and locked up the drawer.- Another e3ample of this theme is the use of real candles to pray which is the traditional practice.in modern times, people will use electric candles to ensure safety and reduce the hassle of lighting candles and cleaning up after the burning ends.his mother had refused to use anything accept real candles until she had almost set fire to the whole altar. 0nly then had she finally agreed to change to the electric candles. All these show us the difference between the old and the young. in our busy modern life, we tend to forget or ignore our traditional practices, complaining that it is a waste of time since welack of time. even if we follow the traditional practices, we tend to simplify the ways in order to sale time and effort. As times passes gradually, we do not practise them anymore letting our traditions die off. An the end of the story, i realized he had forgotten to take care of the altar which is a traditional practice of the Chinese.