A Time When Expatriates Badly Miss Home, Families

DUBAI - Southeast Asian Muslims are reminiscing the closely-knitted family ties that bind them in a special way during Eid Al Adha celebrations in their country.

By Lily B. Libo-on

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Published: Tue 9 Dec 2008, 1:21 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 5:13 PM

Kimal Salacup Jr., a 31-year-old Filipino working with Emaar Property, said that he is always longing to be with his folks back in Marawi City in Lanao del Sur, Philippines.

“The togetherness during Eid, which we show by visiting our relatives and friends with whom we have misunderstandings, to ask for forgiveness and to be repentant of what has been done, is something special that all Muslim Filipinos, particularly my Maranao tribe, misses during Eid.”

King, as he is fondly called, belongs to a well-known and influential Muslim political clan. During Eid, big preparations for feasting is on for everyone.

“In politics, there is always some kind of misunderstanding. But, it is completely forgotten and everyone is always willing to forgive and forget during Eid.”

His wife, Laur, 33, belongs to another influential Muslim clan.

An accountant by profession, she decided to come to Dubai to be away from the troubled situation in Mindanao.

“I told my husband that we go to Dubai and try. Now, we feel peaceful. No one will tell us of any fighting. But, we are missing our big family gathering during Eid.”

Similarly, Indonesian couple, Miftahul Huda bin Mujib, 28, and wife Iis Sulastring binti Oding, 24, miss the Eid celebration with families for a week.

“Everyday, in Indonesia we go from one family member to another for a get-together of feasting and forgiving. Of course, we do this after prayers,” the couple said.

Here in Dubai, the couple, who just got married a fortnight back, could only go to the Indonesian Consulate General for unified prayers and a get-together lunch. But, the couple has to only go home after the event. “The feeling of togetherness and closeness is what we are missing here. Otherwise, we are happy in Dubai.”

Kimal and Laur are in the same position. Here in Dubai, they just go to the members of the Maranao community and, together celebrate Eid Al Adha, which will start with prayers and then a community gathering of eating, dancing and singing.

Back in their hometown in Mindanao, the couple will join together in prayers and in slaughtering animals to offer for the “Feast of the Sacrifice” after which the meat will be divided among the family members, relatives, friends and neighbours.

Both couples are wishing and hopeful of celebrating the Eid next time in their home place with their close ones. 


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