Gawai 2007 Scene 4
These few weeks have been terribly taxing. I've been jetsetting between Kuala Lumpur and Kuching every day and trying to complete my Gawai blog especially the one about this trip I made to Song.
There's this joke that my friends like to tell one another about the Ibans from Song. Its probably because the small town of Song is just a small dot on Sarawak map but the name Song sounds unique. There are many versions on how the town got its named. The famous two versions are One - there used to be a native named Song in the area everytime travellers pass they would mark in their mind that this is Rumah Song (that was before it became a town). The second version is that during one of the Englishmen excursion along the Rajang River during the time of Rajah Brooke, one of them whistled a tune which is usually the case when one is travelling the whole stretch of the Rajang River without the motor outboard at that time. Paddle was mainly used at that time (known as pengayuh or sengayuh in Iban) so it does tend to get boring. The point when the tune was sung was near the Song area. Well that was basically some of the stories I got from historical writers. Maybe if there are some more reliable stories on the origin of the name Song, I would probably update the Wikipedia on Song Town.
Grandma's shoplot Syarikat Nanga Beguang office.
I had planned to see how the Rural Internet Service was operating in town (located at the Post Office). The Rural Internet Centre or better known as Pusat Internet Desa was closed at that time but I am glad they have chosen this town as thier pilot project. Maybe because it was Gawai Eve as most of the staff manning it were mainly natives - and one Japanese :).
As we walked the whole length of the twon I also saw some attractive feature being developed. Development is a welcome change in this small town and I am looking forward to the proposed Waterfront project
Back to the joke that I mentioned earlier about Iban Song. Well there was this Mat Salleh tourist who was taking an Express Boat ride from Sibu to Kapit. During the journey, the Express Boat played Iban Karaoke VCD in the boat to entertain the mostly Iban passengers. The joget dance beat got the Mat Salleh tourist to hum to the karaoke tune. He asked the boat Captain what VCD was being played; the reply was 'Iban Songs'. The Express Boat stopped at Song Town which was between Sibu and Kapit. As the passengers got off the boat the Captain changed the Karaoke VCD to a Wrestling VCD . 'Hey' said the Mat Salleh 'where's the Iban Song?' The Captain replied, 'No Iban Song here, all of them had gone off just now, only Iban Kapit left in the boat". Muahahaha.....