Location : Kampung Ayun, Padawan, Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia.
We kick started our Gawai visit for the year 2015 with Kampung Muk Ayun about 90 min trek from the Bengoh Dam in Padawan.
Entrance to Muk Ayun village
Started under heavy rain on the eve of the celebration so we could make it to the Gawai opening at midnight at the tanju of Mr Mupug. The new road via Kampung Kamas is still under construction and may be very tricky in wet conditions.
New road leading in from Kamas village
View of Ayun village from the new road
Next Gawai may see lots of cars lining the new village road which could spell accommodation problems for visitors sleeping over at Ayun. Luckily, Stanley our host managed to get hold of an empty bachelor’s house otherwise we would have to camp out in the tanju. May not be a bad idea as long as it does not rain.
Our host Stanley, busy with the lemang
Anyway, the first cultural orientation for our European guests was the consumption of betel nuts and sireh. Small kicks but fun to see them blushing red. Next was smoking the local way with the bamboo pipe they called supak. Eating of ‘tempoyak’ came as no problem during dinner time. Funny how fresh durians can be such a big turn off for most foreigners while ‘tempoyak’ works just the opposite.
Lesson on the local bong
Candle light dinner at the tanju
When midnight came, Ayun’s awesome gong resonated through the air at Bungo Range.
Tanju of Mr Mupug
Village headman Mr. Tasir
It was time to gather at Mapug’s tanju. The Pastor gave a brief prayer, thankful for a bountiful harvest.
A solemn moment for God
Speeches followed by key members of the village before the presentation of the cultural dance and music. Except for the 3 young girls the dancers were all seniors.
The 3 young dancers
What happened to the young men like Stanley and Billy? They should be replacing the older generation soonest possible. We hope to see a younger team as well next year. Thanks to Stanley, Ketua Kampung Tasir and all the beautiful villagers of Ayun for sharing the Gawai with us. Not forgetting Madam Tarek for her wonderful cooking. (Click here for Gawai Closing 2014)
Kibik all dressed up for the occassion
The morning mist
Pepper planting is gaining importance over rice cultivation