Tonight is the night that a 19-yr old cousin of mine would take a flight to Deutschland.
Right in the middle of Ramadhan which also means he won't be able to celebrate Eid Mubarak with the family in the village this year and the next 4 years possibly.
First of all, let me say that my cousin is a bright straight-A student who is at least a year ahead of his peers when he was chosen to be in the accelerated class back in school.
So, last night, his mother in particular asked for a family gathering at our grandmother's house for prayers and well-wishes for him.
As the way my family has always been, all of our gathering will certainly involve a large abundance of food. Before and after the prayers, we stuffed ourselves with rice, fried chicken, Javanese coconut floss, my grandma's delicious beef sambal, Sarawak's layer cakes, caramel puddings, corn and cocktail puddings, lychee and grass jelly drinks. My mother contributed fried vegetable spring rolls.
In a way, it was a gathering held in a replica of Eid Mubarak celebration specially for my cousin who will not be able to be with us this year. The family wanted to give him that special moment to saviour before leaving.
I told him that celebrating Eid Mubarak abroad shouldn't be a reason to be sad as you will find a way to surround yourself with a new 'family' away from your home family. Just like I did during my stint as a student in the UK. I told him it was the best years of my life.
Me and my sister half-jokingly told him to wait for our arrival in Deutschland and he will be forced to be our 'tour guide'. Hey, there's nothing wrong with dreaming.
To our cousin......tschüsss!