By Irfan Syahmi
KUALA LUMPUR – As the city dwellers return to their hometown to celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri, the foreigners took over the city to celebrate the holidays with their friends.
While earning an income in a foreign land, they also share our feelings of missing family members who are beyond their sights now.
It has been almost four years since Altab Subhan, 30, left his hometown in Mardan, Pakistan. Although his closest family members are with him here, he misses his family members back in his country.
Although he could not go home, he is celebrating the festive season with his compatriots who are working in various factories throughout Malaysia.
“My heart is heavy as I cannot go back to Pakistan. I can only do WhatsApp call, video call, Facebook Messenger to chat with my family.
“I am not that sad because my wife, mother and father followed me to Malaysia. I pity my friends who are here alone,” he said.
The journalist of MalaysiaGazette also took the opportunity to interview a lady from our neighbouring country, Indonesia, Surianti, 28, and her friend, Darmawati, 35.
Both of them originated from South Sulawesi and are not seeking an income at a soldering factory.
“Now, I can chat and do video call. I’m thankful that the world is advanced and easier now,” Surianti shared about the way she keeps in touch with her family during this Aidilfitri.
Sharing her experience last year, Darmawati said that the Movement Control Order (MCO) lockdown disabled her from going to other places in this country and she could only do that this year.
Although she is surrounded by her friends, she still misses her family members in her hometown.
“I miss my family and children in my village (Indonesia),” she added.
Meanwhile, Barakmia Mahmud, 38, a construction worker said that he has not returned to his hometown in Dhaka, Bangladesh for a long time.
“I’ve not met my loved ones for five years,” he said, sharing that he would call his family members every day without fail.
Although he could not go home this Aidilftri, Barakmia planned to go back to Dhaka for the Hari Raya Aidiladha celebration.
“I place my family first. I can’t wait to go home, open a shop to help them earn money,” he said.
Devi Astika, 26, a shop assistant at a minimarket in Johor took opportunity from the Aidilfitri holiday to visit Kuala Lumpur.
“At least, I can compensate my sadness for not being able to go back to my village. My family is far, we can only celebrate via video call.
“It is not enough but what can I do, that is the only thing I can do,” she added. -MalaysiaGazette