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When Raya ends

October 6, 2008

My girl asked the other day when Raya ends? I said in a month. She said, ‘Wow!’ Except that suddenly Raya ends today, at least for these week days, that is. Today is the start of the third fourth term for most schools, public and private; and also just a nice day to be back to work. But not yours truly. Unfortunately for some employees like me who work in the ‘non-Government’ sector (though mine is a unique one), we started work on the second day of Raya, last Friday. I even have to finish some work beyond our working hours until my colleague shouted: “its your Hari Raya! Go back home and celebrate it!”

For students in primary six or Year Six as from next year they are called, are not in celeberatory mood either. Next week is the start of their public exam in which if they pass the exam, will enable them to advance to ‘secondary level’. My girl used to say this is their puberty period, school-wise. I hope that doesn’t give them pressure to grow up quickly, young people these days!

So what is it like to celebrate Hari Raya in Brunei? We love celebrations and family-gatherings (not being sarcastic here, that’s the truth). Brunei is a close-knit family oriented community, so you wont be surprise if everybody knows everyone in Brunei. Hari Raya can go on for a month, with the exception of weekdays routine like work and school, that is.

My other half said its not as joyous or fun when he was much younger. I replied, ‘Of course. Its called ageing.’ Different people have different reaction when asked, ‘So, how’s your Raya?’

My sister is in the UK now, a first for her and family. A friend is now in Azerbaijan, working and will only be back in the middle of this month. My girl is cramming her head as she prepare for her public exam next week. And for us the whole family, it’s been crazy as we just moved in to our own home sweet home, a few days before Raya. Funny the whole family was in full swing preparing to celebrate Hari Raya and come first day of Hari Raya, we all over-slept!

What I did notice this year was the herds, should I say, of children sometimes as young as five, who went from houses to houses, just to collect ‘duit raya’ or the green packet containing money. I remember a few years back, some parents even dropped off their own children from one point and let these children roamed around, sometimes crossing busy roads, just to collect money. How sad was that? I am really relieved that this year there is none to report, at least from areas like Jerudong, Sengkurong or even Gadong. That’s from my own points. Have you seen any in your area?

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Amoi d villa permalink
    October 6, 2008 3:36 pm

    nuthing 2 report fm my vintage point here Eva.

  2. winx permalink
    October 6, 2008 5:51 pm

    Selamat hari raya aidil fitri, maaf zahir dan batin to you. Just doing my blog roll after so many months out of action. Hah!

    Anyway, interesting insight from you. Actually, on our part, we didn’t have any kids visit us for raya this last four days. I guess it’s been a long holiday that most kids spend with their parents. Perhaps too, they have now grown up, and seen as not cool going out collecting chee paus. I don’t know. Whatever it is, I’m a little concern – hahaha. I mean come on, where are the kids? it’s not good for the economy if you think about it. We don’t want a shrinking population, right?

    Let’s face the fact too, that okay they’ve been so many kids out to collect chee paus in previous years, 1. but this is the time for us to bersedekah; 2. it’s their only time to collect money without feeling guilt, but all for fun and feeling the joy of raya. Who are we here to judge kids and say that all kids are there to ‘meminta-minta.’

    Maybe it’s not a good trend, but we were collecting candies during raya when we were young, didn’t we? I must say I went with the gang as far as Police HQ B area in Gadong from Maktab Duli residential area to ‘beraya’. Getting chee paus then were a plus. We were kids. We were slightly naughty, yes. Don’t blame the kids anyway. Who asked us to give kids chee paus in the first place. If we never did, no kids would be out collecting whatever they can collect from every house they visit.

    Yes, we’ve been hearing people saying they lost stuffs after kids visits. No, we don’t want little thieves coming to our house, we just have to be vigilant. You can also be selective, right? Don’t open the door if you think they look fishy. It’s your house, you have the right to invite or not.

    Well, that’s my view this raya 😉 No one has to agree with me. Maaf Zahir Batin

  3. Ramble On permalink
    October 7, 2008 5:00 pm

    Selamat Hari Raya too winx dear. I read from your post re: your P. Congrats?! I wish we can talk more…do you have an email?

    Anyway, I agree with you re: sedekah and all. I was just upset with the parents of those children, letting their off-springs to wander around. Yes, maybe the children have all grown up. It must have been no longer cool to roam around.

  4. Ramble On permalink
    October 7, 2008 5:01 pm

    Tq amoi…hmm children, where art thou? I got red, juicy apples…

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