Hari Raya open house, they say, is a Malaysian tradition. I guess its true. In Arab countries the celebration is decidedly very low key. Except for a small family feast, it more or less ends after the solat Aidil Fitri. My brother-in-law, Latif, who is working in Saudi Arabia told me over the phone that they only get one day official holiday there.
I held my open house yesterday. Just a small one, and nothing too fancy. For me, my priority for holding an open house is mainly friendship and silaturrahim.
Of course the food is there to be enjoyed too. Now, that's very important. After all, one wouldn't want a large group of guests with rumbling, empty stomach to congregate in one's house for too long. They might get riotous and take over the house !
But, most of all, the open house is a means for me to say thank you to my office colleagues for all their help and support at work, a chance meet up with old friends, as well as, an opportunity for me to have long chats with neighbours - a luxury for us (supposedly very busy) town people.
Alhamdulillah many turned up, and the event went without too much glitches. My only concern was that - at the peak of the event - I couldn't manage to speak for long with everybody. And secondly, at one point, my small house LOOKED just like it, i.e. a very small house which cannot hold that many people at one time.
But these are small matters which might be rectified with a little bit more planning.
Thank you to all those who attended and helped made it a memorable experience.