My Eye-opening Visit: Urbanite Goes to Sabah and Sarawak
As I write this my colleagues in Sabah are celebrating Kaamatan. But in years of past, I would not have paid much attention to this festival. Being and living almost all of my existence in West Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak felt like a different country - I even have to get a special slip to enter! Even though we go through Sejarah (History) classes in school, how many of us truly understand what it means to be part of two separate islands each with its own distinct cultures, hosting multiple languages, histories and realities?
When I landed in Kota Kinabalu, it was the first time I met some of my colleagues. Working in such a large organization as Malaysian CARE, we get to befriend people from all over the country. But it also means that we barely get the chance to know each other beyond work. So I was thankful that my directors gave me this opportunity. My Borneo colleagues showed me what tough work it is to do community work. But they rarely ever complained, even when a motorist cuts them on the road, instead of complaining they joke(!).