Another similarity between Kamal and I is our love for Kelantan.
We love the relaxed pace of life, the amiable dialect, the easy access to heavenly East Coast islands, the sumptuous food, as well as the colourful names they adopt, and the list rolls on.
Although my father is a Kelantanese, my paternal grandfather decided to reside in Kerayong, Pahang, where he was last posted to as a Police Officer. Kelantan was only introduced to my siblings to visit a spiritual teacher, who is also my grandfather's close friend. I was five years old.
When my mother retired by option and my father received a better job offer in Seremban, my family moved to Rembau from Cheras. Life became less hectic, presenting an opportunity for my parents to connect with the Kelantanese family, whom I now refer to as The East Coast Chapter. We went back to Kelantan as often as once a month. There, we were never short of invitations for a sleepover.
After a while, because of our frequent visits to Kelantan, my father decided to build a house on a lot bequeathed to a particular community by my grandfather's best friend. The house provides more reasons to visit the state, where we are embraced by the warmth of The East Coast Chapter. Aidilfitri and Aidiladha are celebrated here every year since my maternal grandmother passed away.
There are other gatherings, namely congregational Maghrib and Isya' prayer, zikrs, talks, meetings, and get-togethers. Nevertheless, we would love to be in Kelantan with no reason at all. Just to be there with our loved ones. Like what Kamal and I are doing now. It is simply spiritually uplifting.
I am indeed a Kelantanese.