Nearer to Gawai as I see many of my friends and relatives leaving for their kampongs I get a little misty in the eyes. How are friends celebrating theirs in Saudi or Qatar? Some are even as far away as Florida...may be Gawai will just pass by like any other day or may be Gawai would be a nice reunion for some. I heard one family in England had a street party and the neighbours had a great time one year some time ago..
I was talking to my colleagues that it would be nice to see how the Ibans and other indigenous Sarawakian communities have spread around the world. And it would be even nicer to see how they keep their traditions alive!! But they all think that the community is too small to have a big do...may be a small bbq would suffice ... But again my colleagues say that when people are overseas traditional celebrations may be set aside because people would be too busy working!
Having studied some statistics and having searched for photographs of Gawai and news available both on the Net and elsewhere I must say that I did not get much. info at all to show signs of Gawai around the world.
Ted worked in Sibu Old Airport in the 1960's and has been blissfully married to Menai for more than 30 years! He has a large collection of antique and new Sarawakian books.
However from Perth my friend May Dan has done us PROUD!! Perth has a thriving and very healthy Sarawakian (Malaysian) community. And to let you in the Malaysian community has been holding a Gawai bash for several years now.
This year they have celebrated Gawai with a gusto again at the Willeton Community Hall.. Thanks to their chairperson Mrs. May Dan Lingoh!! Well done! I have her permission to use her photos (as I was not available for the celebration over there). So many cross-cultural married couples turned up for the makai and the entertaining programmes. The costumes every one and even the guests wore were colourful and vibrant.
May - the organising chair and her daughter Kirsten -one of the two MCs of the evening.
Great food!! All Sarawakian fare
Lovely ladies from Sarawak....
OOOOOOOhaaaaaaaaa Toasting the Sarawakians and guests and wishing them success and great harvest.
The organising committee with our favourite aunty Menai (Advisor) from Aup of Sibu.
And so the next Gawai will be again in May and in 2011.....Be there
And with this post I wish all my Sarawak friends Happy and Blessed Gawai.....
besampi ka nuan enggau kita sebilik gayu guru gerai nyamai lantang senang nguan menua. Ngarap ka Tuhan majak meri berkat ia ngagai kita seblik.
All photos courtesy of May Dan Lingoh. Thanks May.....