13 JUNE 2015 : PJ HASH had their GAWAI RUN 2015 at Uluhati. A 7 to 8 km jungle trek had earlier been identified by their trailblazers a few weeks earlier, beginning and ending at Uluhati. About 100 runners turned up, we were told. The run began at about 4.30 with the last ones coming in just before sunset. I don't think the idea was to really compete against one another but more to enjoy the environment and the friendship of the gathering.
GAWAI is the harvest festival of the Borneo tribal community and it usually takes place in May/June each year. PJ Hash have a notable number of East Malaysians, so the run in May/June is called the GAWAI Run. The occasion is also used to show case their Borneo culture either in the form of food or dances. So we were lucky enough this time around to have a whole range of East Malaysian food from the various tribes as well as to see traditional dances.
For those unfamiliar, the Hash House was began by the expatriate community some time in the 60's or 70's. I don't think it began earlier than that because they would have been easy targets for the Communist Terrorists lurking in the jungles then. So it was an occasion of togetherness outside their regular meeting places at the same time getting to know more of the country, by what else but, running through it. Over the years the community expanded to include locals as well. Obviously the idea must be quite novel. Over time the idea spread to Hong Kong, India and many other old British Colonial outposts. So every now and then the Pak Cik's (Uncles) and Ah Soh's (Aunties) will be surprised by a long column of white men and women, muddied, huffing and puffing, sweating copiously from the dense and humid tropical heat, suddenly emerging from their vegetable patch or in between the rows of rubber trees. "Ahh, not to worry, a bunch of crazy Mat Sallehs again". (Malaysian version of Mad Dogs and Englishmen). "Must be their cure for acute home-sickness..Poor thing"
Anyway. We did not run with them. We just enjoyed their fabulous food and the show. Thank you PJ Hash for gracing us.
We think it was great.
|SWISS CONTINGENT MARKING THEIR PRESENCE|
|GETTING INTO THE RIGHT MIND FRAME - JUST DON'T FALL ASLEEP, YOU MIGHT MISS THE RUN|
|SOMEONE FOUND HIS PRIVATE CORNER - I THINK THIS ONE IS FROM THE USA JUDGING FROM THE ACCENT.|
|ALL EXCITED AND RARING TO GO|
|OFF THEY GO|
|FAIR SARONG-CLAD MAIDEN (SORRY, YOUTH?) WELCOMING THE RUNNERS BACK|
|ASAM LAKSA? FOR REFRESHMENTS AFTER THE RUN|
|COMMUNAL FOOD PREPARATION|
|COOKING PASUA - CHICKEN IN BAMBOO|
|BORNEO FOOD GALORE, ALSO INDONESIAN|
|PUTTING SOME CULTURE INTO THE NIGHT|
|AND SOME LEVITY, THEIR VERSION OF THE HARD TIMES DURING THE JAPANESE OCCUPATION OF BORNEO|
|AND SOME LIVE MUSIC|