Friday, November 5, 2010

Happy Depavali ..... Memories from Sitiawan Estate

I currently live next to an Indian family house whom I saw busy preparing for Depavali - painting the house .... cleaning the garden ... and late last nite the lady was washing porch .... and then .... firecrackers ... loud and lot .... this brings back memories of growing up in a multi-racial community - which becomes even more interesting during festive times ......

I remember getting excited over Depavali more than CNY as a child ... why .. because of the excitement of my neighbors ... Depavali is a bigger thing for us living next to an Indian community than Chinese New Year .... :0

Baby's sister and Prema's mother will be busy making the Depalavi cookies and muruku a month before Depavali -- and like many other households in the estate I grew up, they will paint their house or even buy new furniture for their homes... they will paint/draw or use colored/dyed rice their front floor with images of flowers etc. Surround their house / fence .... they will place little lights that is lighted over kerosene oil or place candles .. Depavali is a celebration of lights .. so on Depavali eve, they will light up these lights .... for perhaps a week or so ....

My Indians little friends will be thrilled because its the time of the year where they will new clothes ... this is the only time that many of them will get new set of clothes ... but there are some unfortunate ones that will not get them .....

On Depavali evening ... the air is thicken with the festive mood .... the final touches in their homes, final shopping .... by 6-7pm .... our neighbors (my friends -- all of them are kids like me) will be coming to our house ... with a round tray in their hands ... they will yell my name on top of their voices at our gate ... cos the distance from our gate to our house is very far away ....

Yes, its tradition that our neighbors will come to our home bringing their goodies (kuih raya) on their trays ... and we in return will put a palm full of sugar on their tray as a gesture of appreciation. On the right season, we may even give them rambutans or cempedak from our orchard .... so, what do they give us -- LOTS of yummies .... different types of muruku ... round2 dono what small balls (2-3 types of flavor or types of flour) ... and ah-ci-muruku (beehive) ...

In the morning, we will start our home visitation as early as 9am ... we will go from house to house to "bai-nian" ... hahhaha ... this is where we will enjoy our dhall curry .. mutton, chicken curry with tosai or idlis served on banana leave ... and we eat with our fingers .... eeemmm .... interesting .... yummy ....

Well, Happy Depavali to all my old friends back in Sitiawan Estate .. wonder if they still live there ... wonder if they are still around ....

p/s : Mom called me ... and wish me "sin-nian quay-lerk, sin-nian-huak-chai" (translation : happy new year .... new year prosper) ... pengsan!!! Yeah .... its Depavali .... Indian New Year!

2 comments:

sng said...

and i dont even know tis Deepavali... until like.. er, it's over... ha ha

ing said...

different culture for u now my dear .... different celebrations