Thursday, May 31, 2012

Gawai holidays ...

Oh lame title.

Anyway, 1st June is officially a public holiday in Sarawak to hail the Gawai Celebration or in those days it was called the Harvest Festival to mark the end of harvesting season and honest native farm folks gather together to say their prayers of thanks to the deity they believed in. However, native folks these days are more of a town people than farm people, and those still taking to the hills or down in the valley to plant padi are a small few. God bless them all. To find out more about the origin and history of Gawai, google it yourself or read more here.

My mom had a huge farm when I was growing up, and me and the siblings helped her in the padi fields more time than I remembered now. Tough days those were, especially in the beginning phase of planting and weeding. And the sun was so hot and cruel especially to a teenager coming home from school and straight to the padi field to help out. No rest. Sometimes I dozed off between the tall stalks when mom wasn't looking. Kids these days don't know what some folks go through to put rice on the table. When I reached 16, thankfully, mom stopped to help dad's church planting ministry. And here I am until today, buying rice from the supermarket like everybody else. Reminiscing.

AND for the good news: since Gawai is normally celebrated 2 days in a row, and 2nd June just happens to fall on a Saturday which coincides with the King's birthday, the following Monday was declared a State holiday. That means, it's a looooong weekend for the exotics and lovelies in the Land of Borneo. Wohoo!

I shall be at home all weekend catching up with the family, and maybe sneak out to get a doze of love from that amazing Caramel Macchiato, and some other friends who are celebrating. Maybe.

Oh! Oh! I was greeted by this lovely exotic crispy native delicacy when I got home today. Batches and batches of them in the canisters and plastic wrappers, gift from some relatives and family friends. Free stuff! Yeay! I'm not sure what it is generally called but to me it's always been known as Kuih Jala (jala as in net).

So here's wishing all the native folks of Sarawak a big 

Or as we say it in Bidayuh Biatah: 
Siramat Andu Gawai!
in Bidayuh Bau:
Seramat Ondu Gawea!
and in Iban:
Selamat Ari Gawai! Gayu Guru Gerai Nyamai!
(they're the only languages i know how to wish it with)

and to the rest, have a great holiday and a lovely weekend! 


  1. Selamat Hari Gawai to you and your family. May you all have a bountiful year ahead, God bless.

  2. wow you have a long holiday there! :) enjoy your kuih jala!

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  3. Hahaa kuih jala. That's the first time I heard anyone called that like that. In fact, that's the first time I heard the name of that kuih. Before this just makan ja hehee.

    Your family had a huge farm? So, how's the farm now?

  4. suituapui: Thank you! have a lovely weekend to u too. God bless!

    FiSh. ohFISHiee: Thank you babe! yesss long holiday to hibernate. :-) maybe someday u can do a review on the kuih jala. :p

    Babbling Wendy: and same to you! :-)

    Armstrong: yes kuih jala, memang nama dia. some people also called it 'kuih penganan'. I just eat them. Farm still there, big huge land not being maintained... waiting for me to build a huge castle on it. haha. Happy Kaamatan!

  5. Hahaha its true that kids nowadays dont know how hard it is for our parents to put food on the table.

    oh man, i dont think i can work in the paddy field. i am too pampered by internet and aircond xD

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  6. Happy Holiday kopi Girl! Gayu guru gerai nyamai.. Anang nyirup lankau.. haha...

  7. Happy holiday coffee girl! Have a nice weekend with your beloved family...don't forget to post more interesting entry next time, after Gawai of course hahaha

  8. this food looks interesting and yummy.. does it have filling inside or sumthin? i wanna know how the taste is...
    Have a wonderful weekend babe!

  9. Daniel: stuffs people do to survive. when i looked back at those times, im amazed that i even have that miniscule experience to talk about to my kids and grandkids someday... haha. someday la. as of now, same, internet and aircond... GenX stuffs.

    AmirFX: thanks! bisi ngabang nuan tek? nadai ku nyirup. nyirup udara segar jak. hehe

    Adi Herman: thanks man. will sure do! that is, if i can muster up the energy once coming back back from the ho-lazy-day. Lol

    Genskie: is it nice, crispy and made of rice flour. no filling, just like threaded pancake folded in two. :-) have a wonderful weekend too babe!

  10. Slamat bigawai! We call that kuih tutok because you have to keep hitting (nutok) the mould to create the nets.

  11. Hi Coffee Girl, do enjoy your long weekend and the kuih! By the way, you are welcome to view my post on egg sandwich, just a simple to prepare meal.

  12. Reeyau: thats Bau right? or is it Padawan? Slamat Bigawai to you too!

    Libby: thanks! hope you enjoy ur weekend too.

  13. Happy Gawai Dayung, malas mode is on.

  14. the last to wish u happy gawai. hehe. and i want kueh jala please :)

  15. Ivynana: selamat Gawai dayung! busy mode is back on track! :p

    Mr_abs: its not too late yet, thanks for the wishes. kelak courier kueh jala. :)

  16. cyrildason: slamat onu gawea to you too!


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