Treasuring the memories of Hari Raya cards

Photo used for illustration purposes only

KUALA LUMPUR – The arrival of the postman during Ramadan in the past was much awaited, as apart from the usual letters, he would also deliver Hari Raya greeting cards from relatives and friends near and far.

But with the advent of sophisticated technologies, the physical Hari Raya cards are being increasingly replaced by electronic greeting cards sent through the social media including WhatsApp, Telegram and Facebook.

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However, for Masfaridatul Afiza Mohd Ali, 41, from Taman Bukit Mewah, Kajang, the tradition of sending physical Hari Raya cards will always have a special place in her heart.

“It should be revived to give a chance to the young generation to feel the enjoyment of sending and receiving Hari Raya cards like in the past,” she told Bernama.

In fact, she and her husband Mohamad Fauzi Manap, 48, have started keeping Hari Raya cards they received from friends and relatives since 2016, with some bought from other collectors.

To date, the Bahau, Negeri Sembilan-born has collected over 500 Hari Raya cards, including an A4-sized Hari Raya card which she received from her husband Mohamad Fauzi on the first year of their marriage in 2001.

“This Hari Raya greeting card is special for its attractive language content, and it is not only large in size but also has pink floral patterns and a song is triggered when it is opened,” she said.

In addition, she said Hari Raya cards from dignitaries including Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah and Raja Permaisuri Agong Tunku Hajah Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah were also among her cherished collection.

She said she did not miss out on the opportunity to send Hari Raya cards to dignitaries including the Sultan of Brunei Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah.

“I was overwhelmed and excited when my card was replied to with a beautifully designed card complete with a picture although I only sent an ordinary card,” said Masfaridatul Afiza, who regarded it as a way to express respect and loyalty to king and country.

Due to her deep interest in the hobby, the bread and cake-making teaching instructor also took the initiative to set up a Hari Raya Card Collecting Gang on Facebook in 2019 to serve as a medium for exchanging and exhibiting their collections.

For Fatin Zulaika Zamawi, 22, although Hari Raya greetings can be delivered via telephone or short message service through various applications on social media, they were not so special compared to sending or receiving a physical Hari Raya card.

Thus, the final year student in Bachelor degree in Science (Architecture) at Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) Seri Iskandar, Perak has been using her talent in drawing to produce Hari Raya cards to sell online through Instagram @studioseni since last year.

Every Hari Raya card she produced was based on the postcard concept with the themes of ‘Our Mosque’, ‘Minangkabau’ and ‘Raya Food’ including ‘Our Hero’, which is a form of appreciation to the frontliners combating the COVID-19 pandemic.

So far this year she has sold over 1,000 Hari Raya cards, and she is glad that her products have also attracted the attention of fans abroad including in Australia, Singapore and the United Kingdom.