Friday, January 08, 2016

A Visit to Kg Hakka Mantin Before it is Gone.

I arrived at Broga around 6.30am there were already a few coffee shops opened for business, I picked one that was strategically visible for arriving friends it was before the Police Station. A light breakfast was essential before the ride.
The number of cyclists slowly turned up and it was more than expected we have a total of 28 riders including 3 kids. We started off the ride about 8.10am
The way to Mantin was the same way we took for Let's Cycle project where we enjoyed going through the palm oil plantation, the morning weather was excellent and coupled with the shaded trees and kampong setting it was simply a superb condition.
After travelling on the quiet road along the boundary between Negeri Sembilan and Selangor we reached a housing area called Pinggiran Bayu.
We pedalled for about 16km before we hit the Semenyih Seremban trunk road which was heavier in traffic and extra precaution was required especially when cycling in a big group.
We were on the trunk road for only a distance of 4km passing through Mantin town before we turned right into Kg. Hakka. Mantin was famous for its tin mine, the European called it Tin Mine but the local people couldn't say it correctly and they called it Mantin.
Kg. Hakka (also known as Kg. Attap Hakka Mantin) has a history of about 120 years where the Chinese migrated from China to Malaya to work in the tin mining industry and they were mostly of Hakka origin. Unfortunately the fate of this village has been dampened with a plan to redevelop the area. The residents were not pleased with the compensation offered by the developer and sadly the majority have left the village leaving only a handful who are still staying in the village and protesting against the development.
There were many publicity created by NGOs' and political parties over the last few years and somehow we were triggered and decided to visit this place before it is totally destructed. We took our time to cycled around the village to appreciate the landscape of the settlement that was full of culture and history of the Chinese migrants. Most of the houses are empty and in dilapidated condition.
It brings me memories when I was young cycling in Padang Serai with narrow paths and wooden houses like this and also the similarity of my grandfather's house in Padang Meha, Kedah.
Houses have their family names at the main entrance just like my grandfather's.
The 100 years old water wells seen in almost every houses in Kg Hakka.
Cycling around the village before it is long gone and appreciating the architectural and construction of the old wooden houses of the past.
Some of the old exhibits found in the house where Rakan Mantin is.
This Granny is 88 years old strong and healthy, she was kind enough to let us enter her house. She gave us some information of herself and the village. Por Por showed us her wedding photograph and told us that she got 6 daughters and 4 sons that is surely a big family. By the way she is Por Por Kong Sook Koon.
Por Por's kitchen old but functionable.
The old switches we used to use when we were young at our grandfather's house.
Mr. Chong Tze Yaw is helping to provide public awareness of their predicament of this village.
A house dedicated as the community centre, it exhibits old items found in this village as well as providing information of Kg Hakka for the public. Rakan Mantin is a community group promoting and to protect the historical and cultural landscape before it is being totally destructed.
Our Hakka friend Jason chatting with Por Por getting stories about herself and the village.
St. Aloysius Catholic Church standing prominently at the fringe of the town at the main road and it was built in 1901. Kg. Hakka is just situated opposite the Church.
We just could not miss eating at Mantin, we went to an old food court at the town centre for some refreshment and food. I always enjoy drinking the Kedongdong juice with assam boi.
I decided for a plan "B" on our return route using a dirt road beside St Aloysius Church which took us through a cemetery and a housing scheme but unfortunately we did not complete the desired route and we had to opt for a Plan "C".
A wrong turn that jeopardised our Plan "B" which it took us back into the trunk road, I decided to take the reverse route of Broga which mean climbing a severe hill.
The long climbing was taxing a rest was pertinent and fortunately after the rest it was a only short climb before we could roll freely down hill. The rest was relatively easy but it was hot.
A pit stop at Lenggeng cowboy town to ensure the entire group stay in tact before we move on again.
At Lenggeng we were be joined back to the loop of Plan "A" and confidently we rode back.
The heat was getting intense and the minute we entered the rubber plantation with the cooling shade we were so happy and relieved.
The hills ... yes the hills we were already near Broga and were returning from the rear of Sak Dato' Temple with a last climb before we were able to cross the finishing line.
At last we completed the ride with a total distance of more than 43km and it was time to reward ourselves with a nice Air Kacang & Pan Mee especially for the 3 kids who really deserve the treat. Congratulation we shall meet again.
The loop we took on the first Sunday of 2016.

1 comment:

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