Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Rising waters

In the East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia, come October each year, Government and people will start preparing to reduce the effect of the North East Monsoon wind and rising waters causing widespread flooding. The monsoon season may last from 3 to 4 months. Normally the effect is not that much nowadays, unlike in the old days when there was widespread flooding. But once in a while, say in every 10 years, the flood can be devastating, creating loses to lives and properties. In such cases, the Government assists in bringing people to safety, and in providing them food and shelter until the worse is over, then the people return to their homes, or to whatever is left of what they once called home; and life starts all over again, untill the next monsoon season. This is an annual affairs so the Government and the people get used to such exercise.

There are however some people who look forward to the monsoon season floodings. Children look forward to them because that is when they can swim or play in shallow water close to home, if the water does not become too dangerous, while others to the expected Government helps if the water rises dangerously. And to some, making some money from the sales of fresh water fish.

The other day, I went to a place a few kilometers from where I live, where water was rising and many roads were closed due to the flooding. What I found were people catching fresh water fish and selling them by the road side. The flood water as the result of heavy monsoon rain has brought the fish from the surrounding small rivers and streams into the larger body of water, the flood that is, and these fish can easily be caught by putting fish net in strategic places in the flooded areas. All kinds of tropical fresh water fish maybe be caught, mostly small fish but some bigger fish may also be caught. And they sell these by the road side. There is a good demand for such fresh water fish caught in the flood water, they are fresh, clean and quite succulent, though these fresh water fish have many small bones in their sweet flesh.

Water has cut off this road to a small village nearby, but the villages take this in their stride, they have small boats to ferry them out, and they put up fish net to catch fish (those white floats in the top right hand corner of the first photograph & centre left in the second photograph).

In a bigger body of flood water, people really go fishing and sell them to passers by.

These people are waiting to buy fresh water fish to be collected from some fish net in the bigger body of a flooded valley.

And some youth taking advantage of the flooding, caught some fresh water fish in the nearby flooded stream and also sell them by the road side,


Roshann said...

beautifully written.
undoubtedly an amazing post =)

Zawi said...

Though I am sad to see the damage and difficulties faced by the people due to the flood, I enjoy eating the fresh water fishes that become abundant during the flood season. The kelah, tengalan, lampam are delicious if cooked the 'asam pedas' style with a dash of tempoyak.
The bigger ones (above 1.5 kg) are best as the bones are larger and easier to remove compared to the smaller ones. Yummy.