By Yeap Ming Liong
The beauty and allure of Malaysia is an eye opener and a head turner in its own right. My travels recently took me to the interiors of Sarawak, Kapit to be exact. I have never been so deep into Sarawak, and little did I know of what to expect in this foreign, but local land.
Kapit is not entirely alien to me as I know about Sungai Rajang. We all grew up reading about the longest river in Malaysia in our geography text books and perhaps the best word to describe the river when viewed in all its pomp and glory, is majestic.
Now, the reason I write this piece is to highlight the Malaysian Family spirit displayed through the speech and actions of the local people.
Kapit, is predominantly inhabited by the Iban people among others, and in the true Keluarga Malaysia fashion, I felt at home there due to the friendly and warm nature of all the locals.
It is in Kapit, where I had the good fortune to visit the local longhouses for the first time and the locals only exemplified one thing which I say with full conviction, family bonds. I had no trouble communicating with the younger generation, but had slight difficulties communicating with some of the older folks. However, what was clear is that the elders did not look to me as a stranger, but as kin.
The sincerity and honest display of how they treat guests is a clear representation of love and kindness. The food while simple, kept stomachs full and hearts warm. It is this sense of unity and togetherness that must be exemplified and amplified.
It serves as a clarion call to all of us to be reminded of our civic duty to one another. Let us not let hate and differences in opinion get the better of us. One only needs to go online and to see horrible and sometimes downright vulgar comments traded around. Please do not let this be part of our culture.
It is my sincere hope to return to Kapit, Sarawak to once again be captivated by the peace, serenity and beauty of her rich sights and people before long.