A Hari Raya Puasa For The Ages

A meaningful time for family, forgiveness, and love.

By Sean Yee        25 March 2024

From beautiful displays of lights to a buzzing annual festive fiesta at Geylang Serai, there is so much to be excited about this coming Hari Raya Puasa! Not to mention the many shared intimate moments with family and friends. 

With just a couple of weeks to go before the festival, we asked four celebrants to share how they are going to make the most of their Hari Raya Puasa in 2024. 

Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri to all who celebrate!

This year is going to be even more exciting as I’ll be celebrating Hari Raya at my matrimonial home for the first time. Finally, our intimate and cosy abode is ready! It’s been a crazy couple of months as I have been super busy trying to make our home as perfect as it can be before the festivities. 

And there is a lot to be thankful for this year! My family has just grown bigger with an adorable baby niece and my beautiful daughter is turning 17 months old. It’s so heartwarming to be part of her journey, seeing her walk for her first time, being more aware of her spatial surroundings and calling me mummy just makes my heart melt. I’m so excited to dress her up in a traditional baju kurung, if I can find a nice fitting one! Though I’m sure she’s more eager to play with my baby niece slash new play pal!  

It’s going to be a chaotic time, but it is a chaos that my family can get behind. There will be so much food, so much noise and so much joy waiting for us this Hari Raya Puasa! 

– Maisarah Saneb, Logistics Overseer

(L-R) Amirul (2nd row, first from right) with his family, food galore and football at home!

A celebration without family really isn’t worth celebrating. 

They are the cornerstone of the many fond memories I have of the Hari Raya festivities, the shared laughs, banter, and late-night conversations that really transforms my Hari Raya Puasa into something truly magical. Really, I am so excited to see my cousins! Every year, we will shoot mini fireworks at the carpark to add some spark and colour to our celebrations. We may only get to spend time together during this annual affair, but it is the rarity of these moments that makes it evermore precious. 

That said, I’m expecting this year to be a tad different since I’m graduating soon. My family and relatives are sure to ask about my next life’s milestone – National Service. Not really sure what it entails yet really, but it is fundamentally my duty as a citizen, so I’m looking forward to it.

– Amirul Jamalludin, Student 

(L-R) Jermyn Tan, Jermyn with her partner

Hari Raya is kind of a new experience for me!

Given that my partner celebrates it, it is natural that I come along. And it is definitely eye-opening! The hospitality, the grace and the warmth are just so refreshing. I love how closely-knit everyone is, sharing inside jokes, chatting about everything under the sun and giving advice to our juniors. 

And the food! I don’t think I have ever eaten more than at a Hari Raya gathering! The Ayam Masak Merah is just brimming with savoury spices that everyone can smell from miles away, and when paired with rice? Heaven on a plate.

No money can ever buy this beautiful sense of togetherness that is in abundance in the household. Definitely looking forward to the upcoming celebrations!

– Jermyn Tan, HR Executive

Anyone with a family understands that it isn’t always all smooth sailing. We fight, we argue, we reconcile.

But the significance of Hari Raya Puasa transcends our petty conflicts. It’s the perfect time for us to look within and find forgiveness, and love for others as we would for ourselves. The ambience feels lighter, more convivial, and generally, more intimate.

I’m so happy to say that my relationship with my family has never been better and I am excited to start a new year happier and better than I was before! 

– Tanti, Trade Operations

Make sure to read our 2023 Hari Raya feature – How We’re Celebrating Hari Raya

Photos: SPH Media Trust

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