Cap Go Meh Festival in Satya Negara Hospital, Sunter Goes Modestly

Cap Go Meh Festival in Satya Negara Hospital, Sunter Goes Modestly

reported by: Liu Setiawan


Jakarta, February 26, 2024/Indonesia Media – The management of Satya Negara hospital (RSSN) Sunter, north Jakarta celebrated the festival of Cap Go Meh modestly, though the buzz of Barongsai performance was a bit disturbing. The two dancers of barongsai disguising (themselves) as male lion and female lion were led (the way) from ground floor till fifth floor of RSSN building. The buzz coming from the musical instruments which were used to accompany the dance, such as drums, cymbals and gongs, had been anticipated. So barongsai, played by several dancers, was acceptable. The activities of RSSN were not halted. “We have coordinated before with some units including ICU (intensive care unit), patients room, etc. so doctors and nurses accepted (the idea of) barongsai performance for a while,” said Eka, one of the nurses from RSSN.


The Barongsai has always been a typical show in every Chinese New Year and Cap Go Meh celebration. At first, the show paraded the lion’s head mask as a special ritual in every celebration of the Confucian day as a symbol of happiness, prosperity and luck. According to ancient Chinese philosophy, the lion dance accompanied by Liong will be a combination of positive and negative. This illustrates the world’s condition that always consists of two elements. The lion dance ceremony performed in certain places, is said to expel evil spirits so that performances can take place safely. The performance itself was a new experience for the staff of RSSN. “Some patients were not disturbed since we had anticipated the situation. We organized everythings. The performance lasted for more than one hour, starting from the parking area in front (of RSSN building) till floor five,” said Eka.


Some of the hospital staff took their time over the entertainment which occurred for the first time in RSSN. Even the senior director of RSSN, Professor Satyanegara 黃金城  welcomed the Barongsai when entering the lobby of RSSN. Even, Professor Satyanegara 黃金城  shared some angpao (red colour envelope, filled with some money). Some people living in the surroundings of RSSN also watched the performance from outside. “some hospital staff also shared angpao. Perhaps, for some of them, (sharing angpao) is a new experience. That may be the first time for them, sharing angpao for barongsai,” said Eka.


Meanwhile, the commissioner of RSSN, Judi Djohari (Djiauw Joe An) participated in the Karawang Street Festival which was also attended by the wife of Indonesian former president, the late Abdurrahman Wahid (Gus Dur), Sinta Nuriyah who was accompanied by her children and grandchildren. The street festival of Cap Go Meh, is actually a part of enriching Indonesian culture. According to Sinta Nuriyah, everybody attending the festival looked happy. The festival started from the temple of Kwan Tee Koen. Then hundreds of local people, including the devotees of Kwan Tee Koen temple joined the street festival towards some roadblocks in Karawang. “Every year, when celebrating the street festival of Cap Go Meh, I always send one unit of ambulance to standby. Besides, there is one doctor and two nurses who are willing to help if there is one or two who faint suddenly. If they get too tired, they may faint and collapse. If he/she is sent to the hospital, it is too far. Therefore, I provide an ambulance to anticipate an unexpected situation,” said Judi Djohari. (LS/IM)

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