Monday, August 22, 2016

My Cousin Mario got married yesterday.

I attended a wedding with my daughter and a host of other members of my relatives from my Uncle's side which was held at St. Anne's Church Hall in Bukit Mertajam,yesterday evening. One of my cousins got married in the typical Soutehern Indian marriage ceremony. His name is Mariano @ Mario and his father is my Uncle Ranjan who is younger then me in age but my uncle on account of his father being my grandfather's younger brother. I remember in my childhood days when my grandfather Paul Mariano, would take me for a visit to his younger brother's home which was back then located in the premise of the Penang Methodist Boy's School, of  which my grand uncle was the caretaker for most of his life till the day he died. My grandfather and his younger brother had a fall out of sorts when the elder brother decided to be converted to Islam upon marrying my grandmother. The younger brother Paul Martino remained a Buddhist and later married a Hindu, my grand Auntie we call Minachi, Ranjan's mother. Ranjan is the oldest and then followed by Kamal, Susila and Tsuga Nanda. 
All of these members of the family on my grand uncle's side were there at the wedding which was held in a Church hall attended by an assorted of Indians, Malays and Chinese guests. This is the Malaysia that i was born into and was used to where all the different races often got together to celebrate an occasion without any problem. Our differences were buried from the moment we walked into the ceremonial hall and everyone felt at home and comfortable eating and drinking while witnessing a historical event in the lives of the young couple getting married. The event marked a strong kinship among all those who were a part of the Paul Mariano family tree with the Sri Lankan, Sinhalese Bloodline in them. This is my family heritage laid down by my grand father and his brother when they decided to migrate to this country. It is a pleasure to witness how the family kinship is being kept in line despite the religious and racial differences in the latter group of children and grand children.
I am very sad and disappointed that i know nothing of my father's past and his Sri Lankan heritage. prejudice and bigotry has kept my immediate family from wanting anything to do with this side of my family history as most of my brothers and sisters would sooner forget than dwell into such matters. My remaining elder brothers would be ashamed to be associated with my father's or grand father's past as they are now 'Malays' by marriage and their children have become strangers to this side of our family. Sad to think how much they have missed of their true past simply because the parents are too jaded in their ways. The loss is theirs by any means as the family tree that is so multi racial and multi-religious is in fact a source of pride and not something to be ashamed of. I ask myself often enough, what is so great about calling myself a Malay especially in this day and age when Malays are the cause of the chaos and back sliding that is being perpetuated all over. If the Malays do not wake up to reality as it is soon enough, the country will see a whole lot of pain and suffering. 

No comments: