Saturday, July 18, 2015

Syawal 2015 - My 'Raya' Story

Bismillah.

Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah.

If I could be bold and name one common thing which I think I share with Habib Nuh, is that I genuinely love kids. Hah hah! My Eid - the first day of Eid - has always been about entertaining children who would roam about our village as soon as the Eid prayer is over. Every year, on 1st Syawal morning, it's about rushing home from the mosque, eating quickly because the doorbell would start ringing soon.

It's not just about giving the children duit raya [cash in nice colorful packets, pronounce do-it ra-yar], it's about engaging with each one of them and making them feel special because they are special. 

My Raya is not just about sitting pretty and posing for the camera, it's about sweating out and juggling with a dozen of things, just so that the guests would feel cherished. At the end of the day, the feeling is simply awesome, it's a precious unique kind of happiness which you could only get once a year. I hope and imagine when I am 70, these boys and girls would pay me a visit and care to have a chat about life.    

Oh, this year, the qariah of my neighborhood mosque is lucky because the famous, intelligent and good looking young Imam, popularly known as Imam Muda Asyraf gave the Eid kutbah. He is from Gelugor (my neighborhood) y'all! 


Imam Muda Asyraf
gave an excellent Eid kutbah.
No wonder he won the young imam competition

Oh let me back track a bit, on the eve of Eidul Fitri we would usually welcome a group of the village residents who go around making takbir. See that young man wearing grey outfit, facing the camera? Saad who is a hafiz has been coming to my house for Eid takbir since he's small like nine or eight if I'm not mistaken. He is 17 this year.

Raya eve

This Eid, I was fortunate to have received about 80 kids as guests. The number varies between 60 to 100 each year. As in the previous years some of them would come for a second visit, usually after they're done doing their 'rounds'. They would come for the second time to either quench their thirst or count their Eid money collection, LOL.

Counting their Eid rizq.
When I asked about this year's collection.
They said: 'Not as good as before.
Probably because of the price hike and GST.'
Clever answer!
Caught this boy secluding himself from his buddies.
Guess what he's up to?
LOL
Of all my young guests, I think Muzammil is the cutest. He is 11. He talked about himself candidly. He has been wearing glasses since he's 9 on account of heavy reading and surfing the net. He missed fasting for 3 days when he was down with a fever. He is the eldest of two boys. I asked: 'Did you manage to go for teraweh?' His reply was: 'Yes but not when I was busy.' By busy he actually meant his father being busy working night shifts so there's no one to ferry him to the mosque as his mother was occupied with his little brother. 

Muzammil
is such a good sport.
Strumming the guitar for fun.

My first group of guests happen to wear the same color as I did.
The young lady right next to me had this to say before she left:
'I am 18 but I won't be studying anymore because
I need to work to help my mother support my siblings.'
: (

Four siblings.
The middle boy asked me intently and proudly:
'My younger brother [the one wearing brown]
is good looking, isn't he?'
: )
Am not kidding you.
The one in red is Ramadan.
Yes his name is Ramadan.
And the one wearing light blue is Syawal.
Unique couple!

On the second day of Eid (today), we're lucky to be able to play host to fifteen tahfiz students from Cambodia and one from Sri Lanka who could not go home for Eid.

  


On a lighter note, here is a candid Eid video greeting for my nieces and nephews.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pg6fRfvdGoA



Peace y'all!

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