Monday, October 30, 2006

Selamat Hari Raya

Selamat Hari Raya people !! This is my first day back from Raya holiday and feels sooo... lazy ? Did I really take 1 week off work ? Didn't feel like it. Raya was good.. actually it is still Raya kan ? Tapi inilah duduk kat bandar. Raya rasa macam dah habis... ( hehe tak pernah pun duduk kat kampung, so I can't really vouch if my statement is correct ).
Pagi Raya with Dan's family, after that straight to the next section to my parents' house ( Umar and Elsa, please take this leaf out of your parents book. Carilah pasangan orang Shah Alam so tak de gaduhnya mana nak balik kampung... takde sedih - sedih tak dapat raya pertama dengan mak bapak. Paling jauh pun PJ.... ). Tengahari went back to Kuala Selangor to Dan's kampung. Usually after Kuala Selangor we will go straight to Perak but this year my Uwan is with us so tak yah balik. Next week when we send her back then we will beraya with our family there pulak. Malam tu beraya dengan Bab, my father's eldest brother and the next day to Angah's ( Dan's aunt ) house and my Tok Chu's ( my Uwan's youngest brother ).
Esoknya, balik Penang !! But I have to say Penang is a sad affair. My Tok died last year and most of my cousins are in KL. Tinggal Mak Ngah still in Bukit Minyak and Pak Mat in Jitra. We stayed in Batu Feringghi and it became more of a holiday then a trip balik kampung. But I love Penang. So I have to go. Although it took only a few hours for family visits, but still we went, right ?
Food was glorious. The laksa, the rendang ( I have to say I prefer Perak's rendang tok ) and the ever wonderful ketupat palas. I have to say I was rather ignorant of how other people in Malaysia eat. As far as I know raya is ketupat and ketupat palas, with kacang putih. But when I started working, then I know orang Johor ketupat nasi sahaja. Orang Selangor ketupat nasi and lontong. Orang Melaka ketupat nasi and some do eat lemang. Orang Perak ketupat nasi and lemang. I think orang Negeri Sembilan lemang je kot. Then go up north baru ada ketupat palas. I have been served ketupat palas with jagung instead of kacang putih. Orang Terengganu pun ada ketupat palas. Funny huh ?

Monday, October 16, 2006


Imagine this scene,

A lady with her daughter in a car stopped at a traffic light. When the light turned green, the car decided to be dead. Other drivers were honking madly from behind, but try as she might, the car wouldn't start. Suddenly, there was a soft knock on her window. She turned and saw 3 boys, all in punk gears. She quickly checked to see if her doors are locked before reluctantly scrolled down the window. That was when she had a good look at them. Spiky punk hairs, accessories that include spikes and such, like those favoured by Chun Li ( alah.. you know, the chick with powerful legs from Street Fighter ). She was expecting the worse, when one spoke politely , " Makcik kereta rosak ke ? Tak boleh start ke ? " She answered yes and the boy said, " Okay, boleh tak kita orang tolak kereta makcik ke tepi lepas tu kita tengok boleh tak buat apa - apa, ". She agreed and the 3 boys, a Malay, a Chinese and an Indian, pushed to car the roadside.
The Chinese one again went up to the Makcik and asked her permission to look at her engine. She assented and they tinkered until the car could start again. The Makcik thanked the boys profusely, the daughter looked on shyly and they waved her goodbye.
Iklan PETRONAS ke ? TNB ? Or maybe iklan Proton ( beli lah Proton, kete anda sure tak mati tengah jalan punya... ha ha ). Nope. The Makcik was my mom. And it happened at 1Utama. Sejuk hati when I heard this story. Kindness and racial harmony all in one. Hopefully, this blessed country will strengthen herself in that aspect for our children to enjoy.
Anak sapalah tu ye ?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Cry me a river

I was crying buckets while I was driving to work this morning. It started with Ahmad Jais singing "Selamat Hari Raya" then it lingered on to Hotlink advert on a student in London calling his mom and escalated during lagu Heart.
Nak raya kan, biasalah. This will be the first raya without my Tok Cik and my Nyang. Nyang took care of me when I was small. Dulu when we live at sek 6, I went to kindergarten at sek 3. When she is around, she will put me on a bike and push me to school. I will not take the bus to school when she is around. She taught me to pray and tried to teach me to knit.
Balik Penang tahun ni. Tapi raya ke-3 and ke-4 because my Wan is here in Shah Alam with us and of course kena balik kampung Dan in Kuala Selangor.
Shazmi once asked why all Hari Raya dramas on tv are tear-jerker ones. Why aren't there happy ones when Hari Raya should be a joyous occasion ? Good question actually. Maybe it is a reminder for us to think of our parents ( since banyak mak pabak yang dok melangut kat rumah kebajikan ) and maybe it is a reminder to us to always be forgiving ( since banyak anak - anak yang merajuk tak nak balik or menantu yang tak bagi balik ) since what is Raya without seeking for forgiveness ?
Entahlah. I don't have the answer. Hmm.....

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Berbuka with friends

Yesterday went for our annual ( well Ramadhan is an annual thing ) berbuka puasa with our good friends. Anu ( brought his lovely wife Sheena and daughter Henna along ), Shazmi, Shah, Amelia, myself and hubby. It was nice as usual, rowdy as always and filled with stories of yesteryears antics as predicted.
I at the end of the meeting forgot to ask the pre-requisite question " Ko bila nak kawin ? " to the 2 unmarried ones, hurriedly did so. I had to ask or the night will be incomplete. We teased and confronted each other as close friends are wont to do and went home happy.
I am glad and thankful for my friends. I have known Anu and Shah since I was five and we were in the same class in Darjah 1 ( 1 Jingga by the way ). Shazmi although never in the same class with me, was always in the same school. Amelia and I became bestfriends in Form 1 when our similar height fated us to sit next to eachother and thus sealed our friendship. Dan also came into the picture in Form 1 and became close to Anu, Shazmi and Shah in their own right.
I once asked them if they formed a band, what will they call themselves ? Anu, after a few minutes, said 3B. 3B ? Yup, 2 Benggalis and 1 Banjar... although that Banjar is also a Benggali.... haha... Shah was absent at that time. He went AWOL for years, fleeting in now and then when he was on Malaysia soil befure returning for good a few years ago. DO we have to add and another letter to include him in ? No, they are known as the 4B now... well I think you know why.
You have no idea how our lives were entertwined. We survived laughters, fights, marriages, births and deaths. May Allah SWT redhakan the friendship of 4B and ummm...... 2G ? Maybe Amelia and I should pick something that has got to do with B too so that we can become 6 B ? Ohhhhh..... I know ... !!!!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Mail balik uni

Waaa.... semalam sedih lagi. My baby brother pulak went back to his uni. Takpelah, at least dapat puasa and terawikh with him. Mail was a special baby. I remember it like it was yesterday. Mummy gave birth to him on the 11th of January 1986 and it was a Thursday. Ayah and I waited at the hospital for his arrival when the doctor came to see us. There are complications he said. If things go wrong, we have to choose between the baby or the mother. I cried there and then. My father looked stunned. We were then ushered to see Mummy before they do a C-section on her.
When we get to her, she was already drugged, well I could tell from the head lolling side to side .When she saw us, the only thing she said was " Save my baby, " over and over again. Ayah comforted her as best he could before we were asked to leave. It was a harrowing wait for us. The doctor ( Datuk Dr Menon helped deliver all my siblings except for Pek and myself ) finally came out again and said Ayah could go and see Mummy and their new son. I waited anxiously outside, my mind playing out multiple scenes inside the room ( each one more tragic then the last ). Ayah then came out and invited me in and I saw my baby Mail for the first time. But in all seriousness, I was not that eager on meeting him. I wanted to see if my Mummy was okay. She was there, her eyes closed. I touched her nose, praying for the feel of carbon dioxide when she opened her eyes briefly before it closed again. I was 1o at that time.
Mail, I decided, have to take an extra effort to make Mummy happy. She was willing to sacrifice her life for him. I have never let Mail forget that and by doing so, he had always said I am hard on him. True, but I see no other way.
However I suppose Mail, you have reached at least 60% of understanding why I do it. My little baby brother you do bring so much joy to her, with your violin and your singing and your antics. The house is considerably quiet without your presence. You brought joy to all of us... Belajar baik - baik dik. Sayang Ala...