Saturday, 16 June 2018

#alivegurlmudik: Eid Traditions & Changes

My aunt and uncle performing 'sungkeman' to my grandparents

Eid Mubarak, everyone! Did you have a great time with the family and loved ones? Last Friday my sister and I did too. It's really nice being reunited with the cousins and aunts and uncles again, especially busting out all those Eid traditions like we used to. There are mandatories, obviously. Starting out with the Eid prayers in the morning—usually at a nearby field magically transformed to accommodate the masses, followed by waiting for the cousins to arrive and preparing the house. Once everyone's arrived, we begin the sungkeman tradition while begging for forgiveness from one another. They are followed by the money-giving procession by the grandparents to their grandchildren—me included—which are almost always a riot. Lastly, the most important part: the feast. Oh, that's just a really lovely meal! There are usually Opor, Lontong/Ketupat, Gulai Rebung and Sambal Goreng Ati—accompanied by dessert such as Es Buah and Fruit Salad. They taste so much better because we waited for so long to dig in. In the afternoon, floods of more distant relatives will come to the house to trade greetings and share food as well as stories. This usually goes on well until the sun goes down.

My sister's outfit is 100% gifted and/or borrowed

Behind the scenes of every family gathering

Madjani hijab // hand-me-down top // drsv batik pants (giveaway!) // thrifted loafers // photos of me by Sis

However, of course as time goes by, not all traditions can stay the same. There has been a lot of changes, especially since my mother died over 11 years ago. For instance, in my own core family, the only ones who come straight to Surabaya are my sister and I—our parents and brother visit Semarang first and join us after Eid. In terms of food, we barely ever eat ketupat anymore and switching to the easier-to-find lontongs. We were also introduced to Sate Klopo (coconut chicken satay) a few years back and it has become a new tradition ever since. Aside from that, there are some changes that took place this year. For instance, my sister and I walked to the nearest praying site by ourselves, instead of driving over there with our grandfather—because he is, sadly, unable to join us at the moment. It felt kind of nice, though, since the streets are rather quiet. With the religious chantings echoing all through town, it felt rather peaceful and serene. I think with family time such as this, things are bound to be ever changing. And it's important to embrace the changes while also sticking to the traditions. How about your family? Any interesting traditions?

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