Memento Mori

Yesterday, I’ve attended a funeral ceremony for my aunt from my mother side. I called her mak tua, she was 77 years old and she died due to natural causes, she was bed ridden for almost 2 month before she passed away.

For Bataknese people, there are two occasions that is being celebrated hugely: the wedding and the funeral ceremony. And this occasion is no different. Even though I do surprise how could such event that gathered so many people is allowed, bear in mind that here in Medan city, the government is currently imposing an emergency public activity restrictions due to the spike of COVID-19 cases in town.

My aunt has 7 daughters, 1 son, 16 grandchildren and 4 great-grand children. So for Bataknese people, she is considered has a complete and honored life, her funeral ceremony is called “Saurmatua”; Saur means complete. And her Bataknese funeral need to be held completely too (read: in a huge and expensive ceremony) , each step in the ceremony should be conducted properly in accordance with the Bataknese custom.

There are three photos above, the first photo is the only son of my Aunt,along with his wife, he was standing in front of the elderly to receive the condolences and comforting words. Two photos below is me and my husband, I wear the “ulos” – bataknese traditional scarf, and my husband wear the sarong that should be put on his shoulder.

Cheers, Memento Mori,
Karin Sabrina.

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