Sunday, September 20, 2009


I was woken up by the sound of men talking and laughing this morning.

Lots of them.

At first I thought it might be the workers from a construction site near my apartment, but it's a Sunday, and normally I can't hear them talking even when they're there on weekdays.

So I tried to go back to sleep for a while, but the clatter became louder and louder, which is rather unusual for the building I'm staying in.

I looked at the clock, it was a little after 9am. Who on earth would get out of bed before 9am on a Sunday and make so much noise?!

Unsuspectingly, I got out of bed, washed up, and started preparing breakfast.

As I walked out to the balcony with a glass of juice in my hand, I saw a scene that I didn't expect to see on a regular Sunday morning in Melbourne.

There were, at least, 500 Arabic men sitting on the grass of this courtyard adjunct to the apartments, having what seems like the biggest picnic breakfast I've ever seen.

Pardon my ignorance, but I've never seen that many Arabic men, fully decked out in traditional costumes, in one setting before. It was, um, bizarre!

For a while there, I thought I had gone to sleep and woke up in a different country.

There were just SO many of them!

Then it dawned on me that they were celebrating Hari Raya, Or Eid ul-Fitr, as they call it.

But where did they come from? That many of them.

Does the president of, say, Arabic Society of Melbourne (I totally made that up, please don't get offended) stay in my building?

Or are they just someone's closest friends and acquaintances?

How does anyone even have that many friends to begin with?!

I later found out that there was an even bigger scale of Eid celebration or a gala for Aussie Muslims going on at a park nearby, but I still couldn't figure out what was the deal with this massive Arabic-men-only picnic breakfast at the garden of my building.

I was really tempted to take a picture to show you guys, but I wasn't sure whether they would welcome the idea or whether it would come across wrongly as disrespectful, so I didn't.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that I was rather startled because I walked out to the balcony in my pyjamas and I was yawning while stretching when I saw that many Arabic men gathered in the courtyard.

Rest assured that I immediately "reversed" back into the living room in nano-seconds.

It's a good thing that my apartment is higher up, otherwise just imagine how shocked would those men be to see an Asian girl rocking up to the party in her sleepy eyes and pink pyjamas with little monkeys on a holy day like this. Haha.

Anyway, for those who celebrate it, Selamat Hari Raya. Or Eid Mubarak.

For those who are enjoying a long weekend in Malaysia, happy holidays.

For the rest, happy 20.09.2009!

As for me, I'm gonna finish my breakfast, maybe read a little, and have a completely uneventful Sunday.

So, happy lazy Sunday to me. :)