The Adorable Lah - Authentically Malaysian

If you are walking the streets of London or sipping coffee at a sidewalk cafe somewhere in Paris, and you hear in plain English, "So expensive-lah" or "So hot-lah", just turn around in the direction of the voice and I guarantee you that ten out of ten, the person who just dotted his or her sentence with a lah is Malaysian.

If you are feeling homesick in a foreign land and suddenly you overhear a conversation full of Yes-lahs and No-lahs, your homesickness can be assuaged for it sounds just like home and the speakers can only be Malaysians (or Singaporians, which is close enough when you're homesick!).




nique to Malaysia is the 'open house' concept where - during the various cultural and religious festivals - friends, families and even strangers would visit the homes of those who are celebrating the festival, to wish them well and enjoy the feast prepared by their hosts. Definitely something to experience! .

Malaysian Time

It can be said with some certainty that Malaysian time is plus but never minus - i.e., expect things to generally start a little past their scheduled time, or people to get to an appointment just a teensy bit late.

How little and how teensy depends on many factors - mood and traffic among them. Fifteen minutes to half an hour is the generally accepted "plus factor" in calculating Malaysian time, although if it's a Chinese wedding dinner then you can add another hour to that.

Malaysia's Games and Past Times

Wau Festivals - The Kites

Intricate floral cutouts are pasted on, building up the design until the kite is ready for the bright paper tassels that complete its decoration. Kite construction is an ancient art passed down from the nobles of the Melakan court. Over the dried padi fields, a wau bulan, or moon kite, catches an up current of air. Its wing span is larger than that of an albatross. What used to be a post-harvest diversion among padi farmers has become an international event. Wau festivals are organized each year and draw participants from as far away as the Netherlands, Japan, Germany, Belgium, and Singapore.

Kompang - Traditional Music

The kompang is arguably the most popular Malay traditional instrument, for it is widely used for all sorts of social occasions, from National Day parades and official functions to signal the arrival of VIPs to wedding ceremonies and football matches.

Resembling and played in a manner similar to the tambourine, the kompang is approximately 40cm in diameter, with a narrow circular frame called the balos made out of the dried wood of the balau tree, that is covered with a goathide skin on one side. This hand drum is most commonly played in a large kompang ensemble, where various rhytmic composite patterns are produced by an interlocking technique; sometimes to accompany the choral singing of zikir. It is believed to be of Arab origin, introduced to Malaysia during the days of the Malay Sultanate by traders.


C-Right 2014 by Langkawi Gazette