Floating sensation as spirit of City Day prevails
Posted on : 08 Sep 2014

Kuching Water Board’s float sailing on under the torrent of rain. — Photos by Mohd Rais Sanusi

KUCHING: It rained hard at the Kuching City Day Parade on Saturday night, sparing nobody, not even the Chief Minister and Head of State.

People began assembling up to two hours earlier to watch the annual procession of floats and merrily-dressed participants. Those taking part in the parade arrived even earlier.

But when the clouds made known its intentions for the evening, most of the would-be revellers dispersed comically for the nearest shelter.

As the saying goes, ‘The show must go on’. Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Adenan Satem and his wife Puan Sri Dato Jamilah Anu were welcomed upon arrival and escorted out of the rain.

Upon their arrival, Yang Di-Pertua Negeri Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud and his wife Toh Puan Ragad Kurdi Taib were hurried to the grand stand under a patchwork of dripping umbrellas.

As if in retaliation for the downpour, the ground responded by sending a show-stopping display of fireworks into the sky, accompanied by a track from one of Kuching’s emerging musical talents – violinist Nisa Addina.

Who won? The ground, for about 15 minutes. Nonetheless, its denizens celebrated by surging back into the streets from where they were hiding, ready for the first of the contingents to roll by.

There were 59 groups taking part, ranging from government and non-governmental agencies to cultural ensembles to interest and hobby groups.

The first to coast by were the classic cars, big bikes and Vespas that launched a thousand selfies further up the road, stirring excitement despite the rain coming down anew.

Being Kuching, there was no running away from how a large chunk of the participants would be dressed up as cats. A great number of damp felines were spread out in the parade, some with their make-up melted and cleaned off but for a ring of colour clinging around their faces.

Sarawak Kennel Association (SKA) members made a showing with their four-legged companions, ranging from bouncy terriers to regal German Shepherds.

The costumed parade participants riding a sheltered segment of land floats got to stay mostly dry, but everyone else had to take the grin-and-bear it approach. It was fortunate that most of the costumes and floats held up throughout the rain.

Among the organisations sending floats were Kuching Water Board, Sarawak Energy, Kuching City North Commission (DBKU), Kuching City South Council (MBKS) and AirAsia.

A few marching bands were also in the parade, taking the wind and rain in their stride while belting out a tune on their instruments for the spectators in the grand stand and those wrapped in raincoats.

There should be no doubt that everyone rushed home to a hot bath.

Extracted from Newspaper The Borneo Post Monday, 8th September 2014