Friday - 14th December 2001

Andrea, Adrian, Syamalan, Yue Mei, Brenda, Iris, Melissa and Anthony were all packed up and ready for a trip "balik kampung" to celebrate Hari Raya with Khairul, Amanda and family.

Hi, I' m Amanda and I' ll be telling you about all that was done while we were in the Kampung.

15th December 2001 - 12 am

Bad news. One of our cars broke down. We had to wait for 2 hours for the mechanic to arrive and look at what was causing trouble. After his 15 minutes of tossing and turning under the car, we were delighted to hear that the car was Okay! Pheeew, for a few hours we thought we would be stranded there the whole night! But no, thanks to two of our Super Heroes all the way from Subang, we were back on the road. We slept most of the way and arrived safely at my granny' s house at around 2.30 in the morning.

Took our luggage out of the car, and we were all ready to have our last "sahur" before Hari Raya. We had nasi kandar (Yummy). Brushed our teeth and all of us dozed off to wonder land!

15th December 2001 - 8am

All of us were dragged out of bed and straight into the toilet to brush our teeth. Didn' t we bathe? No. Why? Because we were off to the wet market! Dum dee dum..we got in the car and we were off to the market. Vroom, vroom. Once we reached the market we were divided into 2 groups. One group to go get the vegetables and the other to get meat, fishes etc. Why were we buying all these stuff? Because we had to cook our own meal for "buka puasa" . We got home, took our bath, and it was cooking time!

Well we didn' t really COOK. But we did the chopping, washing, stirring and that was about it. (Hey, that was good enough! At least we did something.) After a short break, we got on a truck and we were off to the "dusun" to pluck Langsats, Rambutans, Mangosteens and durians!

Same day - 10 pm

After a good meal and hanging "panjuts" around the house we were back on the road. This time, not to buy anything but to give away food items to the less fortunate who were in the village. The food items were brought by us from Subang Jaya and meant for poor families in the kampung. We managed to visit 2 houses that night. All of us got home with the feeling of satisfaction in our hearts for we were able to make their Raya celebration this year merrier than before.

Our day was over and it was time for us to go to bed. We were going to have a long day tomorrow.

Esok Hari Raya! Esok Hari Raya! Yahoo!

16th December 2001 - Hari Raya - 8am

Everyone was out of bed and was all dressed up in their Baju Kurungs and Baju Melayus. (The sight of seeing all my non-Muslim friends in Baju Kurung and Baju Melayu made me feel so happy).

The boys and men got back from the mosque after Raya prayers and we had breakfast together. (At last we could eat during the day!). All of us had to do something we call  "bermaaf-maafan" before we left the house to go beraya.

We are on the road once again to go visiting. Yay! (This is when we get "duit raya" !). We went from house to house doing the same routine over and over again. What is it? EATING. We were so full at the end of the day.

Besides that, we also had the opportunity to drop by 3 more unfortunate families in the kampung to give away the food items. They looked so glad to meet us. And we were glad to meet them too!

After all the eating and eating and eating, we were back home. And that was practically the end of our first day of raya.

17th December - 2nd day of Raya - 10am

Everyone was up, but not quite happy. Why? Well, it was time for them to leave back for KL. Before they actually left, we went for a visit to Kellie' s Castle which was about 30 minutes away from my kampung. We spent about 20 minutes there looking at the remaining of Kellie' s Castle and we got a chance to feed some smelly deers.

Once we reached back home, all of them started packing and loading their luggage onto the van which was there to pick them up. Each of them brought a whole bunch of Rambutans and Mangosteens home.

Was I sad? Of course I was! I didn't follow them home because I had to leave for Penang the next day. Even though I had a feeling of sadness in me, I had a huge feeling of satisfaction and happiness surrounding it. I was glad that I was able to allow my non-Muslim friends experience how Raya is celebrated and that I had done a good deed for them.

I hope we could do this kind of thing again for the upcoming years. And I also hope that they would give me a chance to experience how Chinese New Year, Deepavali and Christmas are celebrated.