Sunday, April 17, 2011

Mummy's hair

As a woman whose name is not Anne Hathaway or Audrey Hepburn or even Erra Fazira, I have plenty, plenty of physical flaws. Putting the rest aside, today's tajuk perbincangan is the kerak on my kepala which has been plaguing me ever since as I was a baby.

When I was smaller, whenever my Wan from Perak came over, the first thing she would do was put a pan of coconut milk on the stove and heat it up very slowly until it produces oil, then she would grab me and dekat pintu dapur tu lah grandma would scrape the kerak from her grand daughter's hair with the said oil. And it is "OWWWwwww !!!" okay ? I hated it.

Sadly, Wan's remedy didn't work because the kerak causes me to be inundated with dandruff or kelemumur or ketumbir kata orang dari Seberang pulak. Or maybe I should have menyerah diri aje kat Wan... Agaknya if I weren't so elusive from her grabs, I wouldn't have this problem still. Sigh... the choices one made when one was young.

Anyway, nak dijadikan cerita, since I chanced upon a long gray hair on my head, I have been commissioning my children to do the clearing work. While they were there, they discovered my clusters of keraks and therefore I gave them a Change Order to include scrapping of the keraks in their routine too.

Best kan ?

So almost every night the 2 of them would diligently work on my scalp, armed with a fine tooth comb and baby oil. Sometimes, berdarah-darah jugak kepala aku sampai Kamil kena cekak pinggang and suruh dia orang berhenti. For some reason I do not have the heart to tell them off whenever they yank too hard or the comb dug a tad too deep which drew blood and surprised yelps from me sebab they are very serious about this work. I dunno why.

Anyway, the most fun parts are their reactions which can be sooo funny. Usually that comes from Adik lah, my designated clown.

"You didn't use Head & Shoulder today ke Mummy ?" She asked a few times whenever the white particles are aplenty.


"Mummy .... you are snowing, Mummy......" whenever she discovered the big mines.

Or just now she exclaimed, "You have brown hair ! I can see brown hair !" And immediately jumped of the chair and ran off to get Kamil, while murmuring, "I have to ask Babah...." face all serious.

I then heard, "Babah, do you like brown hair ?... Because I saw a lot of brown hair on Mummy's hair....." Then she ran back to me, face more relaxed with her thumbs up. "You are lucky Mummy... Babah likes brown hair. I asked him already...."


And then Abang of course tak puas hati, so he said while still behind his book, "You are such a ninny, Adik. Mummy had always have brown hair ! Since she was younger ! Tak tengok ke rambut CT, CY and CA. They all have brown hair ! So Mummy the same aaahh because they all adik beradik !"

Adik only answered with an, "Oh ?"

She is being super cute by wanting to check if Babah is okay with a wife with brown hair. He heh.

What lah you, Adik...

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Bibik nak balik

So, referring to the above title... Bibik ku nak balik.

Actually, she had been asking to go home for quite sometime because her momma is ill. But she couldn't because there were extenuating circumstances that stopped me from sending her home. And the extenuating circumstances are not me yeah, it is her previous employer. Enough said.

Anyway... the way she said it, well ... sounded a bit final. She kept saying that she has to take care of her mom and the tone too sort of hinted that she doesn't intend to come back.

So one day while we were cleaning cabinets, I asked her what are her plans when she returns. She is basically the main bread winner, all her salary has been sent home, her children although some have grown, are in no position to support her or their grandma or their school going siblings.

She sighed and looked worried. She admitted she doesn't know what she will do. I then suggested for her to go home for a month or 2 or 3 even, get her life sorted out then come back. How is she going to eat or even buy medication for her mom if she is out of work ?

She was shocked. She asked if I am willing to wait for her that long and inquired what the arrangements for the children would be like. I told her not to worry about us but herself. I informed her that if she is serious about returning, I will take her in.

She looked relieved and instantly became her cheerful self again. She had been under dark clouds for a few months after she found out about her mom's illness so I was ecstatic to see her so happy.

Then, last month her mood was sombre again. Apalah yang jadi pulak ni. Phonecalls from Indonesia came frequently and once I heard her shouting. My kids confided in me that her youngest son has been bailing out of school and has taken upon himself to quit. Senang aje budak tu. Kalau aku dapat aku cubit.

Then, her eldest son chased the daughter that has been living in her house and taking care of the grandma, out. So now the sick mom is not being taken care of.


Last week she opened her heart out to me and we talked for hours. I really pity her and sangat menyampah dengan anak-anak yang tak reti nak menyenangkan mak sendiri.

Bibik is no super Bibik. Her housekeeping is so-so. Many weekends I would be scrubbing the toilet and the kitchen and a hoard of other stuffs. You know the nitty-gritty of house-cleaning, the corners that needed attention, the cobwebs, the shelves that needed wiping and dusting and the likes.

*Terkedu jap nengok video clip Terpesone Scott Hew (I think his name was ) and Syafinaz.... Aku tak tau nak kata apa...

She successfully bore holes in many, many of Kamil's work shirts. All at the cuffs. She also managed to put a tear on a lot of Kamil's t-shirts. All on the left side. Heran jugak, all Kamil's stuffs and all isolated to a certain areas... Hmmm... Sungguh musykil.


She loves the kids. I saw them in a cuddle numerous times and the first thing they did when they come home from school is calling her and beaming happily at her. She would throw herself in front of them bila aku naik hantu. Everything is, "Salah Bibik ni.... Bukannya salah Abang/Adik." That never works thus she would end up standing worriedly next to me.

She voluntarily makes sure my children perform their 5 times a day.

She is a great cook. I love her masak lemak and ayam hitam. Macam makan kat Sari Ratu.

She is also my adviser. Yang akan bagi nasihat kat aku when she sees I am making a mistake. I value her advise and care. It is like having a second mother.

That is why when I asked her last Monday, "Bibik janji balik sini ya ?", her silence worries me.

"Bagi Bibik tanya budak-budak di kampung dulu ya...." Was her answer after dia termenung.

Oh dear.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

18 tahun.....

So... yesterday *ehem* *ehem* was our 18th Anniversary.

When I tell people that they go, "You have been married that long ?"

He he... no, no. 18 years of being in love... konon... hehehehhe.

Anyway, Kamil wanted to re-visit our courting days. The first thing that came up in our head was of course Subang Parade because that was where spent most of our stolen times together. Stolen sebab mak den tak bagi dating.... hahahahaha....

Subang Parade was the nearest to our homes so... dah stolen times tu tak leh lah pegi jauh-jauh kan. Anyway, we found that it was hard to retraced our younger steps because eventhough Subang Parade is still there, the old Subang Parade we know has sadly gone as all our favourite hangouts are not there anymore.

1. The foodcourt gone - where we used to eat laksa and beefballs soup and huddled close together while eating this smashing ice-kacang underneath the air-cond no less.

2. Strawberry Field - where we once laughed at this young couple (well... younger than us.. we were so smug of being older that time)because the guy was wearing a blazer and tie and the girl in off-shoulder long green dress... a bit too much since we were in shorts and sandals. The nasi goreng belachan there was yummy ! Strawberry Fields are still around, one in Taipan and one in PJ, but the ambiance is not the same anymore.

3. Rasa Utara - dah tutup langsung. Couldn't find it anywhere.

4. McDonald's still there. Dulu when SP still has a wayang, we would sit at McDonald's for hours talking over his Big Mac and my beef burger. I don't like McD so... it's a definite no-no for our trip through Memory Lane.

Apart from SP, we also frequented Atria for nasi goreng belachan at a restaurant I have now forgotten its name. Kamil said, Atria will be demolished to make way for new building soon and the restaurant ? Loooonnngggg gone already.

So... what is left ? Nampak gayanya we have been together so long sampai all our favourite hangouts dah tutup, I told Kamil.

His eyes lit up then he said, "We still have Cable Car...."

Hehehhehe....... That is right. Eventhough it is not at Jaya Sek 14 anymore, eventhough ot has changed its name from Cable Car to Tram Car, but the Aunty is still there and the food still tastes the same.

Well... dulu nasi goreng RM5.90 and now RM 9.90... Inflation happened..... Nevermind.

So there we were last night, over our Nasi Goreng Indonesia which when I ordered Kamil cheerfully chimed in "Two !" at the waitress. But when he had his first bite he exclaimed, "Eh, ini bukan Yong Chow Fried Rice ke ?" I looked at him and he said, "I nak Yong Chow !! You salah order..."

Errm.... hello. I ordered the Indonesian version for me.. so nothing really changed... He still likes to blame me for the littlest of things. Ha ha ! Anyway it was too hot for him and I was having a good time watching him sweat and went red in the face over the heat.

Aunty came to us and asked, "Pak toe ka ? Kici2 tak bawak ?"

"Takdelah Aunty, kita pak toe lah...."

"Bagus... you memang kena pak toe sekali sekala..." Aunty gave her approval.

"Yalah Aunty, nanti dia lari sama perempuan lain...." This one was definitely from me.

Aunty laughed. "Aiyaa.... jangan risau. Dia datang sini selalu dengan kawan-kawan ramai-ramai punya..." while she patted Kamil's back.

"Aunty, ini hari our 18th Anniversary Aunty. Kita 18 years ago pak toe kat sini lah..."

She gasped in delight. "Masa dekat Jaya sana ? Very good, very good....." and she spent some time with us, telling us the history of her restaurant and a bit about her life.

What a night.

Happy Anniversary, darling.

PS : I asked Kamil, can you imagine us still dating now, at this age ? Yes, he quickly answered. Because I will still have all my hair. Hmmm.... is he blaming me for the demise of his hair ?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

*Sob* *Sob*

Yesterday I arrived home late so when I saw the kids pitched up their tents on Abang's double bed, I joined them there.

I was soooo sleepy so while we talked, my eyelids threated to close many, many times. Suddenly Abang quickly got up and announced, "Eh ! Saya lupa sembahyang Isyak lah..." and jumped off the bed.

Adik yang I know doesn't mind missing her Isyaks had to get up too. They usually pray at Adik's room so while she struggled to get out of her tent, Abang stood at her doorway watching her.

"Eh, Adik ! No ! No !" he said. Adik stopped with one leg suspended on mid-air.

"Jangan langkah Mummy !" He added with a frown on his face.

Adik said "Oooppppsssss...." and retreated. Kurang asam lah budak ni.

While waiting for them, I dozed off but was woken up when I heard them swicthing off the lights. I didn't open my eyes though.

"Adik... Sssshhhh..... Mummy is sleeping...." he warned and they quietly climbed back on the bed. As they quietly settled themselves, I could feel somebody was moving towards me and then a feather light kiss on my cheeks from Abang.

Sebek Mummy sekejap for some reason.

Then Adik of course followed, kissing my ears while murmuring, "Good night, darling. Sweet dreams....."

Bergenang air mata aku sebab sayang jugak budak2 ni kat mak yang ntah apa2 ni. Mak yang dah jarang masak, dah lama tak bake cookies and who couldn't remember the last time she goofed around with them.

I have such sweet children, I really do.

Mummy loves you, kiddoes. Very, very much.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Ice-cream hunt

Adik called me last week at the office.

She sighed dramatically and said, “I think my teacher wants me to lose all my teeth, Mummy…”

Pulak dah…

“Yes… sebab teacher asked us to eat 22 (she raised her voice in disbelief kononnya at this point) ice-cream! I think she wants me to muntah (eleh…) and lose my teeth from eating too much ice-cream !”

“Are you telling me, Adik that your teacher gave you an assignment to eat 22 ice-creams ? Really ? You think I was born yesterday ?”

She sighed again, more dramatics this time as I can hear her think, “Boy, this woman is stupid…” and said, “No…. She wants us to bring 22 ice-cream sticks to school ! So I have to eat 22 ice-creams lah !”


“Adik….there is me, and Babah and Abang and all your Mamus and Ciks and Esya and Ana and they will help you eat all those ice-creams. You don’t have to eat all 22 on your own…. Don’t worry….” Saja je aku.

But her, “Oh…” saddens me for some reason. And made me laugh.

Anyway, so that night off we went to search for ice-creams. Babah was shocked that no ice-cream costs less than RM1. We went from one shop to another until I asked him, “You cari ice-cream 20 sen tu ke ? Mana ada dah Kamil oii….. Inflation happened….”

So at the end we spent like RM40 for all 22 sticks of ice-cream.

Ana had one. Esya had 2. Mummy had 2. Babah probably a bit more. The rest was up to Adik and Abang.

So you could imagine my annoyance when yesterday Babah asked her, “So what happened to all your ice-cream sticks ?”

“Ada kat rumah lah….”

“Tak guna ke kat sekolah ?”

“Takkk…. Teacher suruh guna sweets…”

“Sweets ? What for pulak ?” Tinggi suara Kamil.

“Kamil… they are using it for counting… But…. dah beria suruh bawak hari Jumaat, tak guna pun ? Guna sweets pulak ?”

Masa ni Adik shrunk to her seat and I just shook my head. Biar benar cikgu ni…. Or has my daughter pulled the biggest con of the year ?