Raya 2014 : Salam-salam, jalan-jalan, kenal-kenal, makan-makan …

How do you spend your first day of Eid? 

After the Eid prayers and breakfast, we’d usually start the day with a formal salam-salam ceremony. My parents (who looked like royalty this Eid with their yellow outfit) would sit and ‘bestow’ forgiveness and money to their ungrateful, degil children. Hehe.

Mr Husband finds this ritual kind of humorous as this was his 2nd time having to again, salam and cium lutut. Even Hazeeq could not escape this adat. 

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Then, a couple picture with the royals. With a few selfies along the way.

 

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Later, a mini convoy to our relatives houses for their food and famous layer cakes. My kid has yet to understand the joy of duit raya but that did not stop him from making a collection from the elders and stuffing the envelopes in his little pocket.

Upon bringing Hazeeq berjarah, I learnt of an old adat as well. Adat sambut anak sulung. Intrigued by its name, I asked Father what it was. He said old folks believe that if you bring any eldest child of the family (anak sulung) to any house for the first time, you should spray him or her with perfume and such. This is to prevent the living spirits in the house from befriending and attaching themselves to that young sulung child and cause mischief. Itu kata orang2 tua lah. The good thing is Hazeeq smelled nice for the whole day. He he.

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Highlight of Raya 2014 was when we visited another aunt the following day, who was staying at the house Mr Husband and I rented when we first got married. We couldn’t resist taking a quick picture to wrap up the Raya. Smile.. KImchi!

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Raya 2014 : Homestay Taman Lavendar

People often ask,

“Siapa ada di Kuching?” after knowing very well that my parents have migrated to Semenanjung ever since I was 12 years old. I have lost my grandparents when I was very young which means my parents loss their parents at a young age too. But we still have blood ties who are still alive. Mainly our cousins, their siblings et cetera. And this is enough to make Hari Raya a festive season for all.

This year kita raya ala-ala merantau di bumi sendiri. We do not have our own house in Kuching. Hotel rooms are way expensive hence we chose a neat homestay for the Raya week.

Homestay Taman Lavendar,
No 25, Jalan Depo,
93050 Petra Jaya,
Kuching, Sarawak

Owner : Encik Rahman
Tel : 016 867 3565

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The single storey terrace house had 3 bedrooms with air conditioning in each room. 2 toilets with one in the master bedroom fuly equipped with a hot water heater. A small, cozy kitchen with its kitchen appliances, even a fridge to store our ikan masin and kuih lapis. A front porch that could fit two cars – our Persona and Myvi that we borrowed from a relative. A TV with Astro.

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NO WIFI. But who needs it anyway during Raya, kan?

All this for MYR 250/night. 

I felt it was reasonable for our party of 10 people ( 8 adults, 2 toddlers). My younger brothers slept in the living room which was equally  comfortable because of its nice sofa and air conditioning!!

Overall, the house was clean and most importantly near Matang where all the relatives live.

Raya 2014 : Travelling under WPUA with Air Asia

Selamat Hari Raya everybody. Camne Raya kitak tek? 

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As a civil servant from Sarawak working in Semenanjung entitles me to a special ‘treat’ from the government. That is a once a year FREE FLIGHT back to my hometown whenever I choose to use it. And these free expenses cover Mr Husband and my son till the age of 18 years.

WPUA

Air Asia’s smart top people have introduced the Waran Perjalanan Udara Awam (WPUA) flying programme to kind of bring them closer to public agencies and truth be told, I felt like a First Class passenger on board the flight under this WPUA.

In short, we get pre-selected Hot Seats, Hot Meals with a snakc box and most importantly FREE 40kg worth of baggage space each! That’s enough to bring back lots of kuih lapis for a home business. Hehe.

My brother who was using his warant as well under MAS even envied our food selection and ‘special seats’. He got an economy class seat of which he said was far more cramped than the Hot Seat in Air Asia aircraft. Now that he’s mentioned it, I am choosing Air Asia again next year.

PUTRAJAYA CENTRAL – EXPRESS RAIL LINK (ERL) – KLIA2

We traveled from Malacca using our own car and parked at Putrajaya Sentral. The facility charged us MYR4/overnight parking which was a cheaper alternative to park at KLIA2 itself. Then we took the ERL for a mere, very comfortable 20 mins journey to KLIA.

The transit train was well on time and we noticed other young families doing the same.

Adult fees were MYR6.90 per way.

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KLIA2

As most people have commented elsewhere, it does involve a lot of walking. A bit of a challenge for the elderly or small children but if you know where to ask for help, I’m sure the relevant authorities at KLIA2 could help make your journey smoother and more convenient.

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KLIA2 was an airport connected to a shopping mall –  which makes any woman scream for a bit of  ‘light window shopping’   prior to boarding.

We checked in at the counter as the computer system was down and had plenty of time to just rest before getting on our flight. Hazeeq enjoyed his Upin Ipin movies and snacks while waiting.

Already we were hearing familiar Sarawakian accents at the airport by staff to passengers during boarding.

“Mintak boarding pass kitak kak”

“Kitak tiga nait sama kah?’

“Kitak nait dolok.. embak miak”

Hello Sarawak. Let the fun begin!

Raya 2014 … hoping it will be special and will become a tradition

All major religious traditions carry basically the same message, that is love, compassion and forgiveness the important thing is they should be part of our daily lives.

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I do not recall the exact moment of when Hari Raya means just another holiday. Perhaps it was the killjoy preachers who likes to say ‘puasa kita patut lebih meriah dari raya tapi kita pula buat yang sebaliknya’.

I agree that one should not spend lavishly for Eid thus nullifies all the pahala he/she has gathered during Ramadhan. I however also disagree that we should downplay Eid as an event of joy and celebration. Eid as a personal victory in battling our personal demons as we observe the fast.

I see Eid as a public and accepted excuse for a person to go home and spend some time with the family. To bridge the gap and rebuffer connections. To wear something nice and fresh for a special occasion. To see and visit people you’d never have seen even if you get that long weekend off.

A time to be generous. A time to forget that one eternal enemy. A season to eat special food and taste new delicacies.

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This year I am celebrating Eid at my hometown Kuching, Sarawak.

This is not a normal ‘tahun ni beraya kat tempat saya’ sort of thing. This time the whole family is going back to Bumi Kenyalang specially for the raya season – not the school holidays, not for annual leave.. no… it is RAYA. Despite undergoing housemanship in Kuching before, I did not really get to enjoy the festive season as it is. I had to be oncall. Hence, this year is a great opportunity for myself and also Mr Husband to see how Kuchingites celebrate Hari Raya.

It is also my hope to be able to go back to Kuching for Raya every 2 years. Of course my government warrant gives me the privilege of having that once a year visit but for Raya… lets BE able to make it for at least once in 2 years. Lets make it a tradition for my family.

I still have one last call this weekend prior my flight to Kuching. My bags have been packed since last week.

Till then, I wish everybody Ramadhan Mubarak, Eid Mubarak. Take care.

Syawal moments

I wouldnt say Ive been terribly busy this month but.. only 4 posts? Really?

This year my little family celebrated our Eid at my parents place in Selangor. I secretly hoped however that we’ll be able to have Eid in Sarawak again one day. I have to prove to Mr Husband that Eid on my side is not a bore. 2014, maybe?

Preparations

The night before Eid I helped Mother in the kitchen preparing our Raya dishes. Alhamdulilah, this year Mother was in the mood to be on her best behaviour and cook for the family. I honestly cannot bear the embarassment of having Mother serving Rendang Tunjuk to Mr Husband. So since Mother was in a good mood i.e not fighting over mundane stuff [re: imaginary ‘madu’ & family], she had a flight of ideas and energy to cook a lot of stuff. From rendang, nasi impit to baking heaps of cookies and cakes. My energy level depleted to like 5%. Just enough to angkat gelas minum ayek masa sungkei.

Eid morning

The usuals. Only this year I rose early to bathe Baby Zeeq and ensure he’s the cutest baby on earth. Our little family’s theme was Blue.

We had the sesi bersalaman with the Sarawakian touch of course – cium lutut. It was Mr husbands first time having to do it and god it was a funny sight. I should have captured a video of it and blackmail him later. Hihi.

After Raya breakfast.. we ended up watching the movie SAM.

SAM : Saya Amat Mencintaimu

Only 1.4 million MYR kutipan ? Sheeshh.. apalah urang kita tok.. crita bagus camya sik mok nangga. crita sidak bertumbok, jadi bohsia menyundal sia sitok suka…

Hear ye.. hear ye.. from someone who rarely watches Malay movies : SAM is an awesome movie, nice cinematography, convincing plot and acting. You have got to watch it. id buy the DVD once its out, dude!

Many Syawals later

This year I had the opportunity to go back to MIL’s hometown in Segamat for a family day. There were games, makan-makan and a photo session. I was in envy as I see how strong their family ties are. As someone who’d grown up to be independent and pretty much self- sufficient, I sometimes yearn for this sort of bonding with other humans that we call as family. A tie so pure and sincere. Not plastic!

All in all… alhamdulilah it was a great Syawal. I didnt mind being oncall the moment I set foot to go to work the next day. [yeah, right].