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23 Jalan Damai ,
86200 Simpang Rengam,
2 August 2009.
How are you? I was very happy when I received your letter this morning. I had so much 1) ______ reading about how you celebrate Christmas in Moscow. In Malaysia, I celebrate “Hari Raya” which falls on the first of Syawal, the tenth month of the Muslim Calendar.
Hari Raya is celebrated after fasting for a month in Ramadhan, which is the ninth month of the Muslim Calendar. During Ramadhan, as a Muslim, I have to 2) myself from eating, drinking and from committing any ill-doings from 3) __________ until sunset. It is hoped after Ramadhan, the Muslims will continue to do good and avoid any wrong-doings. So, the Hari Raya marks the Muslims’ success in fasting for a whole month.
Of course, Hari Raya is a 4) ___________ occasion for Muslims from all walks of life. On this 5) ______________ day, everyone puts on their 6)___________ clothes and go to the mosque to perform obligatory Hari Raya prayer. Usually each family brings a plate of traditional cakes and cookies to be shared together after the prayer. Before we leave the mosque, we ask for forgiveness from each other. Then, we go home to have a 7) ___________ meal with our family. We often have “ketupat”, which is actually rice cooked in a case made of woven coconut leave. This ketupat is eaten with “rendang”, meat cooked in 8)____________ spicy gravy and peanut sauce. We can only savour these dishes on Hari Raya.
Every year we never miss to visit our grandparents 9) _____________ are staying in a village located about 40 kilometres away from our house. My cousins often arrive at my grandparents’ house a day earlier 10) _________they live far away in Kuala Lumpur. Can you guess what usually happen when cousins get together? Well, we will have a long 11) _____________ about everything under the sky. When we were younger, we used to play fireworks. However since playing fireworks have been 12) _____________ in our country, we choose to stay13) _____________ watching special Hari Raya programmes on television.
Last year, since all my cousins were able to be present at our grandparents’ place, we 14)_____________to have a football match competing against the local team. As expected, we lost the game as most of us had not 15) ___________ football for quite some times. Yet, we had 16) ___________ ourselves tremendously. Hari Raya is a day where everybody has a chance to meet. It is a day to tie the bond. Most importantly, it is a day where old wounds are 17) _______________ and love to grow between family members, between friends and neighbours.
Ramadhan is coming soon. I am looking forward to it because it is a month full of God’s blessings. I hope you have enjoyed reading about Hari Raya. It would be 18) _______________ to have you here to celebrate the day. Bye.