Reminiscing about Past Hari Raya Touches the Heart

When Hari Raya Aidilfitri comes there is certainly bound to be sweet reminiscences or memories of past celebrations including those of the sixties, seventies and eighties. The old days and the old ways were quite different but the happy and cheer of the traditional visits have not disappeared.

Happy memories are unforgettable and Hari Raya of the sixties, seventies and eighties were full of them. Some people consider the Aidil Fitri of those eras as unique whether in aspects of preparations and the arrival of Hari Raya itself. The uniqueness included the different Hari Raya fashion, food and communication tools. There were telephones but no internet yet or mobile phones except those used by the security forces and other agencies. Awang Haji Muhammad bin Timbang talked about painting the house three days before Aidil Fitri and not wearing traditional Malay clothes for the men who wore western style shirts, trousers and neckties.

In the old days walking was the most common mode of travel during Hari Raya because then most people, especially in Kampong Ayer lived nearby. Nowadays many people live far apart but the car and other motorised vehicles make the distance much shorter. During pre-COVID-19 days, many people also travelled to Sabah and Sarawak to visit relatives and friends during Aidil Fitri.

As for food, past Hari Raya saw more traditional food being served such as kelupis and dry Malay biscuits. Now more modern cakes and biscuits adorn the tables. One reason is this kind of foods are easier to get today.

Social media is the platform for sending Hari Raya greetings nowadays as opposed to the Hari Raya cards of the past. No more long and nervous waiting for greetings from loved ones because social media connect people very quickly.

Hari Raya Aidil Fitri experiences differ for every generation. Today the difference or new normal is in a huge way caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The tide of modernization has changed the Hari Raya atmosphere. But forget the difference, because no matter what occurs, Aidil Fitri offers the best opportunity to say sorry, to forgive and forget. Make that happen this Hari Raya.

Source: Radio Television Brunei