Saturday, May 31, 2008

Re-Post of Kaamatan Celebration

Also a re-post, just in case you missed it last year:

Its been years since I checked out the Kaamatan celebrations. The daunting thing here is the heat. If you want to participate in any outdoor activities, be ready to melt.

Well, we passed by the celebration venue yesterday and it was cloudy so I asked Hubby to drop me there. There was no chance he could get to park; the place was very packed. I only had the little cam with me, and just when the I saw the ultimate photo opportunity, a group of boys playing contemporary songs on the gongs, it ran out of battery. But anyway, here are some pics:

New Imagekaamatan girls 2
Before: kadazan/Dusun/Rungus Girls

I'm not sure which tribe they are from, but the Kadazan/Dusun girls are known for their fair skin and beauty. The highlight of the festival is the crowning of the Unduk Ngadau or the harvest queen. Unfortunately that was done the day before.

After: older, but still lovely
One of the tribal huts.
Each hut was manned by a different tribe, exhibiting their own crafts or customs.
Gong Players
Tapai drinking

After an hour, I concluded that the Kaamatan Festival centers on tapai! As I went from house to house, almost all the males were half-stoned, including the teens.

Tapai is a home-made brew made from rice. It is stored in jars. In this hut, the guys were lining up to sip tapai from the communal jar (using same bamboo straw...) for RM2.00 per sip. Each sip is what you can take in one breath. I saw a guy who could reduce the tapai level in the jar by about 3 cm in one breath! Everybody was telling him to stop. I think he cheated.

Bamboo trampoline
I went under the house to shoot pics of these people as they jumped on the bamboo trampoline. I guess the reason why everybody at the celebration was grinning was they couldn't help it, after some tapai and brain-shaking jumps.


triShie said...

i'm going Gawai visiting tommorow.. looking forward to the foooodddddiess!! hahaha!!
don't think i'll catch anyone in their traditional clothes tho. nowadays, everyone is so modern!

Agnes said...

I hardly go to such place to celebrate Harvest Festival. What I crave for is TAPAI! Haha

Anyway I think I saw you just now coming out of the elevator in Warisan Square with you son... Is that you??

Precious Pea said...

Terri, I accidentally deleted your email. I remember you said something about your hotmail not working? You keen on the Wagyu?

yammylicious said...

woah nice trip! everything sound so traditional!

Moodie Foodie said...

i'm not a fan of salmon, but the only raw fish i've tried are tuna (quite fishy) and kingfish, though I have a feeling the kingfish can be quite hard to come by. But then again, since i can blanched the fish in boiling water anyway, any fish should be safe rite? :S

Oh, i can't wait to meet you. We will have so much to talk about!^^ My official email is Be hearing from you soon then. :P

Precious Pea: WOW...wagyu??!? WHere??@ Can i come? pretty please with sugar on top?? :)

jimctang said...


Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

trishie: where r the pics of the Gawai celebration?

agnes: was my ugly twin..

pp:my yahoo mail can receive mail but not send out sometimes. i'm keen on the wagyu except i don't want to bother ur BIL. will ask yi to check with the butchers at vic mart. but, u r so kind to offer help ( a true glutton will understand), thanks!

yammy: yes, u shd try make a visit here during harvest time.

moodie: oh no, not all fish are sashimi grade bc some have parasites. yes, will email u my mobile no so do call me when u get bak. i will be away 15 to 18 (KL & Labuan) June. i'm thinking hard where to bring u!

jim: wow, thanks. it looks kinda macabre's the legs off the floor i guess.

Moodie Foodie said...! Have a great time away at KL!! Retail therapy, i suppose? I won't be back in KK til the end of the month anyway, but I don't really mind going anywhere since u seem to know a lot of hidden gems i don't even know about. :D

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