This Quaint Muslim-Owned Grocery Store Puts Up Festive Decor For CNY Every Year

The owner, Fazan Abdul Wahet, said he is simply continuing his family's tradition since 1978.

Cover image via Kedai Runcit Abdul Wahet (Facebook)

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Kedai Runcit Abdul Wahet never fails to spread festive cheer in the small town of Kuching, Sarawak

The grocery store, located right next to Kuching city's main mosque along Jalan Datuk Ajibah Abol, has been putting up decorations every Chinese New Year for more than 20 years.

Its owner, Fazan Abdul Wahet, told Dayak Daily that he is simply continuing his family's tradition of joining in the festivities.

The 63-year-old said he remembers when his family first decorated their shop with two small homemade Chinese lanterns to celebrate Chinese New Year in 1978.

"Those days, we just wanted to be a part of the festival, and some family members would find time to make the decorations and to create the festival atmosphere. It was always fun for all of us," he said.

Fazan Abdul Wahet (centre) and his nephew-business partner, Muhammad Jaya Idris (right).

Image via Kedai Runcit Abdul Wahet (Facebook)

The shop owner added that celebrating other cultures is nothing unusual in his family as they are of mixed ethnicities

"I am of Indian-Bidayuh parentage. Since we are of mixed parentage, we celebrate and put up all sorts of decor for festivals — Hari Raya Aidilfitiri, Gawai Dayak, Christmas, and Chinese New Year — especially for our grocery store.

"I anticipated that this would bring joy to my customers, regardless of the different ethnicities and cultural celebrations," he said.

He also told The Borneo Post that without the decorations and celebrations, customer turnout would be noticeably lower.

Fazan shared that his father founded the business in 1939, which began as a bakery, before they became a grocery store in 1979

Nowadays, he said Kedai Runcit Abdul Wahet sells traditional biscuits and baked goods such as Sarawak layer cake, love letters, and cookies, as well as curry paste, spices, acar, and more.

In true Malaysian spirit, Fazan, who speaks fluent Hokkien, also added that he provides Indian food catering services to his customers, no matter the occasion.

You can find Kedai Runcit Abdul Wahet here:
Lot 542, Jalan Datuk Ajibah Abol, 93400 Kuching
Opening hours: 9am – 5pm (Daily)

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