Long Queues At Geylang Serai Market Before Hari Raya As S’poreans Try To Honour Festive Tradition
For a while, it seemed like Singaporeans were adapting well to changes to Hari Raya celebrations amidst ‘Circuit Breaker’.
However, footage of crowds swarming Geylang Serai Market in the days leading up to the occasion appear to indicate otherwise.
The above video went viral on Facebook page Borong Pasar Geylang on Wednesday (20 May), just 4 days before Hari Raya.
Similar sights from as recently as yesterday morning (21 May) point to a rather worrying trend.
Snaking queues form at Geylang Serai Market days before Hari Raya
Geylang Serai has always been the choice destination for the Malay/Muslim community to get their necessities due to the vast halal options available.
Closer to Hari Raya, sale of festive food items like cookies, ketupat and lontong make it the one-stop hub for many Singaporeans.
This reason, perhaps, was why snaking queues formed outside the market in the days leading up to the occasion.
While everyone kept a safe distance and waited their turn to enter, the large crowd was still a startling sight.
According to TODAYonline, safe distancing ambassadors in charge of crowd control would direct patrons to other markets nearby if there were too many people.
One ambassador even claimed crowds have doubled closer to the Hari Raya celebration.
Hari Raya incomplete without a trip to Geylang
In interviews with TODAYonline yesterday (21 May), shoppers explained the nostalgic value of visiting the market every year before Hari Raya.
The atmosphere is palpably different there, with familiar faces of sellers clearing stocks before the holiday.
For many, Hari Raya feels strange without the annual experience.
Crowds at Geylang Serai Market before Hari Raya in 2019
Since there are no bazaars this year, their attempt to cling on to the next best option is fairly understandable.
Try to seek safer alternative options
The admin behind Borong Pasar Geylang, who runs a delivery service from the market, expressed their wistfulness at being unable to help shoppers as their order slots are full.
While getting items online is one possible option, the safest way is still to visit our nearest markets instead.
We’d want to avoid crowds gathering in one place, even with safe distancing measures, to curb risks of infection.
The easiest way is if everyone did their part to only go out when necessary, to places within their vicinity. Most food items should be available at other markets, so don’t limit yourself to one place.
Let’s comply with the measures for now, so we can gradually return to life as per normal sooner rather than later.
Featured image adapted from Facebook.