Standing together inside the office, we were reminded of our dad, Young KING, who could write English, kept the accounts and did the King Bros wages with Uncle Charlie and of what a hive of activity this area was in the 1940s and 1950s, where everybody congregated in the adjacent cookhouse. On Sundays a communal dinner was held after which gambling tables were set up for mah-jong, dominos and fan tan. Chinese families from Oamaru, Timaru and Christchurch would call in to visit.
The King Bros market garden partnership was started in the 1920s. They leased 280 acres of land and welcomed many Chinese men who were willing to work on the garden. They were from Toishan with the surnames of YEE, LEE and MOY. By the 1950s the NG/KING brothers’ and the workers’, wives and children had arrived in Ashburton. There was 14 Chinese families living on the land or nearby, and by the late 1950s and early 1960s all had left to start their own businesses in other towns. Five acres of land known as King Bros was gifted to the Ashburton Council in 2014 to form a park, in recognition of the Chinese settlement and the Chinese contribution to the community.
Outside, standing on the pig kiln, our thoughts were of the delicious roast pork we would eat when we held party celebrations for Chinese New Year, Christmas, One month babies, birthdays and weddings. Our jobs as young boys were to gather up all the broken wooden boxes that couldn’t be mended and chuck them next to the pig kiln. An adult would light up the fire by burning paper and wood and then it was our job to chuck the boxes into the fire from the top of the kiln. A sheet of corrugated iron was used to keep the heat in. Once the bricks were hot enough, the flavoured pig would be lowered by a pulley into the kiln. The rich golden colour, the crisp crackling, the delicious smell and succulent taste will stay with us forever!
Yep NG and Tong KING
The King Bros market garden partnership was started in the 1920s. In 2014, the King Bros’ families gifted the land to the Ashburton council with the plan to convert it to a local recreational ground and also to restore the building for its historical significance.
When arriving at King Bros, it was bright and sunny with light breeze. The run-down building stood sturdily and sternly under the contrasting light and shadow, radiating the aura of its past heyday. At a closer look inside, its fragility and shabbiness become apparent. I waited till dusk for the magic moment to capture the ambivalent ambience and its nuance.
Gathering together to pose for a portrait in front of the pig kiln was unusual to the two Ashburton brothers Yep NG [伍揖仁] and Tong KING [伍揖聰]. Not that they aren’t close, only that they live a very different lifestyle nowadays. The pig kiln was, and still is, a pride to the King Bros community – you only can taste the best Chinese roasted pig in King Bros. The pig kiln is now a relic to reminisce the weekends, holidays and celebratory occasions that were once flooded with hurley-burley and applauded. For those who had never tasted a piece of roasted pig from the kiln, sorry you missed it and shall miss it forever.
King Tong HO
 In photography, magic moment is a short period of time during dusk or dawn when the intensity of the ambient light that falls on the subject/object is balanced with (or equal to) that of the artificial light. However, in this photograph, the artificial light of the building is absent.
站在大楼里让我们想起：会英语的父亲Young KING, 与为 King Bros 记账和算工资的Charlie叔叔。在一九四零和五零年代, 相邻的厨房里总是一片繁忙景象, 用于玩麻将、多米诺和番摊的赌桌会摆好。从 Oamaru、Timaru和基督城来的中国家庭会前来参加逢星期日举行的聚餐。
King Bros 开始于一九二零年代。他们租了二百八十英亩土地, 欢迎意欲在农地耕作的华裔加入。他们是来自台山的 YEE 姓, LEE 姓 和 MOY姓人士。一九五零年代, NG/KING 兄弟和工人们、与及他们的妻子和孩子, 共有十四个中国家庭居住在 Ashburton 或附近。然后在五十年代末、六十年代初离开农场, 开始在别的市镇做自己的生意。
在二零一四年 King Bros 把五英亩地作为礼物送给 Ashburton 政府。并打算将之建成公园以纪念华裔当年对社区的贡献 。
站在猪窰旁边, 我脑海中浮现出我们庆祝春节、圣诞节、婴儿满月、生日和结婚时吃的美味烤猪。作为年轻男孩, 我们的工作是把那些修不好的木箱扔到猪窰旁边。成年人用纸和木头生火, 然后我们便从窰的顶端把破箱扔到火中, 再用一块带波纹的铁皮盖上, 以保持热量。当窰内温度足够的时候, 便把调好味的猪只用滑轮吊至窰中。烤猪的金黄色泽, 酥脆的外皮, 香气和多汁的口感常留在我的记忆中。
King Bros 农业合资公司成立于一九二零年代。在二零一四年, King Bros 成员们把这幅土地捐给Ashburton 市政府, 连同一份计划书, 建议把旧建筑物维修, 作为历史古蹟, 及把土地用作该区休憩场地。
一个明朗风轻的日子, 我来到与伍揖仁和伍揖聪兄弟会面。荒废了的建筑, 坚定地站立在光与影之中, 散发着昔日极盛时代的光采。然而, 当走近细看, 却呈现着它的破旧和脆弱。
我静候黄昏时「magic moment」的到来, 以捕捉这环境的矛盾和微妙氛围。
Ashburton 兄弟伍揖仁和伍揖聪在烧猪窰前合照是难得的聚首, 这并非他们之间不亲厚, 而是因为他们俩不同的生活方式。像从前一样, 烧猪窰是King Bros 成员们的骄傲 — 只能在这里尝到最美味的中式烧肉。烧猪窰这遗迹, 让人们能追忆当年在周末、假期和喜庆日子, 聚集着人群的躁动和掌声。未尝过此窰烧出来的猪肉的人们, 对不起, 你永远错过了。
King Bros 大樓
站在大樓裏讓我們想起：會英語的父親 Young KING, 與為 King Bros 記賬和算工資的 Charlie 叔叔。在一九四零和五零年代, 相鄰的廚房裏總是一片繁忙景象, 用於玩麻將、多米諾和番攤的賭桌會擺好。從 Oamaru、Timaru 和基督城來的中國家庭會前來參加逢星期日舉行的聚餐。
King Bros 開始於一九二零年代。他們租了二百八十英畝土地， 歡迎意欲在農地耕作的華裔加入。他們是來自臺山的 YEE 姓, LEE 姓 和 MOY姓人士。一九五零年代，NG/KING 兄弟和工人們、與及他們的妻子和孩子，共有十四個中國家庭居住在 Ashburton 或附近。然後在五十年代末、六十年代初離開農場, 開始在別的市鎮做自己的生意。
在二零一四年 King Bros 把五英畝地作為禮物送給 Ashburton 政府。並打算將之建成公園以紀念華裔當年對社區的貢獻 。
站在豬窰旁邊, 我腦海中浮現出我們慶祝春節、聖誕節、嬰兒滿月、生日和結婚時吃的美味烤豬。作為年輕男孩，我們的工作是把那些修不好的木箱扔到豬窰旁邊。成年人用紙和木頭生火, 然後我們便從窰的頂端把破箱扔到火中, 再用一塊帶波紋的鐵皮蓋上, 以保持熱量。當窰內溫度足夠的時候, 便把調好味的豬隻用滑輪吊至窰中。烤豬的金黃色澤, 酥脆的外皮, 香氣和多汁的口感常留在我的記憶中。
King Bros 農業合資公司成立於一九二零年代。在二零一四年, King Bros 成員們把這幅土地捐給Ashburton 市政府, 連同一份計劃書, 建議把舊建築物維修, 作為歷史古蹟, 及把土地用作該區休憩場地。
一個明朗風輕的日子，我來到與伍揖仁和伍揖聰兄弟會面。荒廢了的建築，堅定地站立在光與影之中, 散發著昔日極盛時代的光采。然而, 當走近細看, 卻呈現着它的破舊和脆弱。
我靜候黃昏時「magic moment」的到來, 以捕捉這環境的矛盾和微妙氛圍。
Ashburton 兄弟伍揖仁和伍揖聰在燒豬窰前合照是難得的聚首，這並非他們之間不親厚，而是因為他們倆不同的生活方式。像從前一樣, 燒豬窰是 King Bros 成員們的驕傲 — 只能在這裏嚐到最美味的中式燒肉。燒豬窰這遺跡, 讓人們能追憶當年在週末、假期和喜慶日子, 聚集着人群的躁動和掌聲。未嚐過此窰燒出來的豬肉的人們, 對不起, 你永遠錯過了。