Last blog post was about how to reach the Hong Kong Lam Tsuen Wishing Tree 林村許願樹. This blog is about how to make a wish at the Wishing Tree since things have changed from the traditional times.
The traditional idea of the wishing tree was to first, to make a wish, one needs to first buy a “bao die.” A “bao die” will have a large yellow paper on which you would need to write your wish. The paper is then rolled and tied to an orange. It is then tossed up the tree with hopes of it clinging on to its branches. If it doesn’t hang in three tries, it is said that the wish made is too greedy.
However, today, it is no longer allowed for you to do that. The tree is very weak now and supported by poles even. They have built wishing boards (yes wishing boards
like those in Japan) where you can hang the wishes.
When we reached there, a lady was there to sell us the “bao die”. She was quite insistent and she did made sense. We came all the way and surely we do want to make wishes. So we did buy the stuff from her.
However, here’s the thing. After buying the “wishes papers” from her, she wanted to sell us more stuff (like incense and joss papers which, in my opinion, was not necessary since that was not the original idea behind the wishing tree and it is NOT cheap). So just stick to buying the “bao die” which is a reasonable price.
You then write your wishes on the paper. Write what you want (career, money, love, children, studies..). I wrote four (as you can read from the picture). Namely, “good business”, “peace bring prosperity”, “meet good people when out” and finally, “good health”. I wanted to write good shares trading and good foreign exchange trading but don’t know how to write in Chinese for these :)
And here’s where the WONDERFUL CUSTOMER SERVICE of Hong Kong comes in. If you dun know Chinese and worry that the gods do not understand your language, no worries. The lady provides an translation service via paper ! :)
You then pray to the tree with the paper (written with your wishes) and then dun throw it at the tree ! Instead, hang it on the wishing board: