Wednesday, December 28, 2011

that time of the year again


hi folks,

i hope you guys had a nice break over Xmas.I tried but it didn't really work out...thanks to Pasar Pasir Penampang in Kuala Selangor which sold us a fish for RM99! Some of you may ask, why so bodoh and beli when price tags were not displayed...

this is what happens to people who are too trusting...

i should be done with that kinda life, huh? (trusting people, that is)

anyway, I had lodged a complaint with pihak berwajib in Kuala Selangor and kementerian yang berkenaan (beli ikan apa sampai RM600!) Ohh..I feel so stupid now. :))

and being Malaysians, NOTHING will be done.Mark my word.If I ever hear from any of the two people I wrote to, I'd let you guys know.

the firefly cruise was excellent, though.Orgh...angin sepoi2 bahasa di malam yang berkelip2 sangat indah and soothing.Tiba2 ada suara budak next to me:

ayah ayah..sungai ni ada buaya tak?


on a more cheerful note, the half day (for me cos' I had to rush for my SBU meeting at Zahid's new Kull..wah..he took us on a tour, showing off his new place.Nice view, actually) at KDE was pretty interesting.Prof Moten was shouting at the back asking who is hosni mubarak when Dr Badri said there's a spring not too unlike the arab spring in the kull.Haha.Kopanski said I was witty when I named Prof. Moten as the new Mubarak.Wakaka.All in a good jestlah.Too bad I had to leave early.The mengaji part (tadarus) was really good altho' I was like keretapi Tanah Melayu.Dr. Azura was impressip with her speed and reading.

Monday, December 19, 2011

SMU-Krash Pad Project dalam kenangan

well deserved dinner at Marche

(Joshua Nair, Kanika, Anis and fren.Z at the back)

Spore team during the early days

inspiring talk

created by Krash Pad kids

IIUM students giving a helping hand

mcm tak percaya anak2 remaja ini yang buat

(lebih baik dari melepak tak tentu hala kan?)

antara tulang belakang projek ini

Joshua, Ian dan Kanika

akhirnya after 1 year, hasil2 kerastangan

memperolehi pendapatan ekonomi....

Dear Prof. Faridah,

Very glad the fair went well last week, and that the girls at KLKP have started taking charge of the entire jewellery-making process themselves! On behalf of the whole team, we'd like to say 'Thank you' to you for supporting and guiding us since the start of this project. Our project would not have made so much progress without your support, encouragement and faith throughout.
Thank you also for helping us book the hostel (which was very comfortable), and for looping in your students to help us with the fair at IIUM. Anis took a lot of care, and really worked very hard to make this happen. We were very glad to meet the rest of the team who have been working on this initiative as well. We truly hope that the IIUM students continue Project Harapan, and take it to the next level to further develop the skills of the girls at KLKP. There are many new girls at KLKP, whom we think would also benefit from Project Harapan.
Thanks also to Zafirah, who has been kind enough to take time out for Project Harapan, we really truly appreciate it! Do let us know anytime you're in Singapore, and we'd love to catch up with you as a team.
Thank you once again, and have a good break this December! We will miss you and Project Harapan!

Best Regards,

PENA 50 tahun

ahem...sapa tu?

Tahniah PENA on its 50th year anniversary.

Congrats also to Dato Baha Zain for being the first tokoh PENA. They should have got him some sponsors and gave him more than just RM5K lah. Dia banyak berjasa.Jgn bila dah tiada, baru nak diratapi. But being a humble man, he remains humble.Semoga Allah berkati hidup beliau.I like the poem read in honour of him (written by him).

I saw many frens ..old and new at the dinner.Our PM looked very people-friendly at the majlis and the crowd loved him (he was very supportive throwing in RM5mil to translate buku2 sastera and another 1 million for PENA to upgrade apa yang patut termasuk rumah usang itu.Syabas AJK dan Prez PENA yang baru dilantik.Berani meminta kerana tanpa penulis2 Melayu/penulis yang menulis di dalam Bahasa Melayu, bahasa itu akan mati dan tidak bermartabat.What is RM6 million kan?)

Sapa tulis speech PM? I like the term 'tamadun spiritual'.Woohoo.Bagussss.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

my life on facebook

i am too lazy to update my blog cos' updating news/events is easier on facebook (uploading pics especially). sorry folks but time seems an issue with me now.after perth, I don't sleep. :)

so many events and deadlines to catch up with.i'm thinking of moving closer to the uni.the distance gets into me (esp with bad jams during this rainy season).

and now a big paper for Hanoi.when people pay for you to speak, the pressure is tremendous.
maybe after the final exams, I'd be able to transfer some pics from my facebook.

and i'm starting to write a novel. :)

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Greetings from Perth

Perth has grown so fast and so big (with the economic has become so cosmopolitan and yet retains its friendliness)

Mei and I are staying at St Thomas More college, a nice hall near Kings Park (a huge park which overlooks the's equivalent to Hyde Park/Central Park)

Kinoi took us out to dine at an Indonesian restaurant last nite (Bintang). It's like we never left home.Sini byk kedai Melayu/Indonesia yang halal.

Nanti sambung.Kinoi picking us up to go to Fremantle.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

How to become a bore

I'm becoming a boring person, folks. I have no new entry except to share with you how busy I am this week, this month and next few months (see? I told ya)

It was not easy to get the KL Tower Restaurant's new number.Not even our telephone operator got it right or the former owner Seri Melayu. We had to google (Z and I or rather Z did). Finally when she did, we did a last min. reservation to dine with Prof Sawai and his beautiful wife Keiko (and son, Makoto). Nik drove so he could beat whatever bad jam there was at BB.

It's been years since I was last seen at the Tower Restaurant.New management mah..nama macam it belongs to Shangri-la or Mandarin.Whatever. It's lovely up there.Sapa2 nak ber-honey moon utk sekian kalinya, bolehlah berpura2 selama 50 mins (that's how long it takes for the revolving restaurant to come full circle) And we requested that they play a jazzy Malay song to welcome our guests from Japan.Prof Sawai senyum lebar dgn isterinya.

Food nampak mcm bagus but after a while, tak sedap mana pun..not for a bill that's over RM1K!
Baru I faham arti mahal macam bedil.Hahaha.But we had fun and it was very relaxing time out for all of us.

And today I was their supir..after the talk which we all enjoyed so much.A real Harvard material Prof ni.There were so many excellent questions from the floor.Lunch was also good.Alhamdulillah.

Then Kak Mun rang to say my good friends from Sydney nak datang rumah malam ni knowing I was flying to Oz on Saturday.I had planned to work on Asiatic (Q breathing down my neck! Haha) but dgn penat dan malam ni punya session, sure tidur awal...can a little genie take me away to a nice little island where there is no pressure???

I pray to God my day will be left undisturbed and uneventful besok.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

I survived..I will survive

Syukur alhamdullilah, I survived my forum on human rights in Malaysia yesterday (was a panelist with Prof Aziz Bari and one of the 4 Commissioners of SUHAKAM James Nayagam)

Thanks to a friend who was kind enough to help me gather articles on the topic (I spoke on women's rights in Msia) I think I did pretty well and enjoyed the session so much. :) Sebelum tu I had so many butterflies in my tummy (maklum I'm not of legal background). A fren sms-ed me the following which was so funny and comforting:

All your pets will be behind you, hidup atau dah mati! Remember Tuah, looking from heaven! Tomorrow you will be on the metro front page, so speak up for all of us!

It was indeed a nice experience. Fun time catching up with Prof Aziz and meeting James.

I am also so proud of student organisers (Political Science Dept) for being so brave in organising this forum.Katanya ada 3 pak guards datang melihat2.My, nak tengok apa? Ini kan university? Memang kerja kita bercakap dan berfikir!

A good thing the forum was not cancelled.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Post-Tuah life

Teja kembali ceria.She's the one running after Tanjung

My mak said Tanjung ni rupanya burok,tak macam Tuah

Our 4 quails (nama Fresh, Ginger, Soy and Sauce)

Angora mix yang Su says I could have one

I love Su's garden (very green.Baja taik rabbits)

Su has 8 angora newborn babes

The real angora

owwwhhh...isn't she adorable?

more newborns (angora mix)

here kitty kitty

tak suka yang ini.Serabai!

We are all worried that Teja might die out of loneliness.I agreed to look out for a new love for her.A new boyfriend or husband must be found by hook or crook.

Daud (Ruzy's son) refused to give away one of his 3 rabbits.His mom wanted to give away all 3. :) I know the feeling.You'd simply get emotionally attached to these lovely creatures.

I rang Sulazli for help.She asked if I could wait till her Angora babies are a bit grown.I said I could not wait.Teja might die.She looks real monyok already.So Su (who I had not met since we left school in 1980) kindly invited me over to her place and we'd stop somewhere to see some rabbit options.

I found Tanjung (female cos' Z said do not bring a jantan home.If we had more little rabbits, we would not be able to cope.Mcmlah dia yang jaga..haha).And Su said rabbits are by nature homsexuals and lesbians.They would still 'do' each other.And the guy who sold Tanjung to me said, bezanya mcm kita juga..ada perempuan yang mengandung, ada yang tidak. I was like, ha?

Then I saw other toys. Birds!

I bought 4 puyuh cos' they seem easy to hold and can't fly.

Aging can do a lot of funny things to your head. :)

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tuah had gone to heaven

Tuah, during her prime

Tuah, one of my two rabbits died at 7.15 am today.I was there during her nazak.Bibik fed her water.Mak I entah mengapa sapu minyak cap kapak kat perut Tuah...maybe THAT sped up the process of sending her to heaven.

I never really liked Tuah.I thot she was ugly, ill-mannered and jahat sebab dia suka gigit orang and suka mengamuk (kalau lambat kasi makan) not like my beautiful Teja.Tuah would always lie on the upper deck and poor Teja tidur atas hay yang kadang-kadang penuh dgn taik.

The last few weeks and it got intensified the last 2 days, I was seriously thinking of giving away the two to my friends.Arrangement was made: the rabbits would be handed over to Sulazli after the sch holiday for therapy for her special school kids.
But last nite I changed my mind..sebab terasa sayang.I mean every morning and balik kerja, the first two we'd see would be Tuah and Teja in our porch and kita akan kata hi rabbits or hi Tuah hi Teja...Nik would marah the two kalau dia bising on his way to work (selepas pakai kasut kerja).

They have become part of our life.

So belum sempat I nak hantar Tuah ke the vet, dia dah mati.I thot letak je dlm rubbish bag and buang but my mom (and a close fren) said give it a decent burial.So I rang Man, my gardener friend at IIUM.Here's our ph conversation:

"Man, arnab saya mati.Boleh tak awak tolong tanam?

"Hubungi masjid.Biar masjid uruskan" (dead serious tone)

I was like ha? biar betul..then in my tears I could not stop laughing (sampai berguling2 dan bergelinangan airmata.A real hysteria)

"Man, ARNAB bukan orang" (he must have heard'uzubillah!)

"Ooooohhh..terkejut saya..saya ingat orang tadi.Boleh boleh..nanti sampai ofis, kol saya."

So Tuah was buried somewhere at IIUM Gombak.Nanti I will go and see where.

Plan for Teja: either I give her to someone or I get her a new friend.Kalau tak dia akan mati lonely.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sultan Kelantan's bday

Of cos' dalam apa2 hal, yang 'over' biasanya girlfren atau with Sharifah, Pak Lah and Sharifah's bro in law (who also got the bintang like his bro, Azmi)

Nik with Pak Lah

Darjah Kebesaran Kelantan Ahli Setia Mahkota Kelantan Yang Amat Terbilang (Al-Ibrahim V, 1967) or A.S.K. was bestowed upon Nik Affendi Jaafar, my boiferen.

mengadap Sultan

rear view.Nik's 3rd from right. :)

Kelantan King entering the hall

the Balai where official functions take place
(very da cold)

At Istana Balai Besar (this palace gave Kota Bharu its name cos' when the old istana at an island was damaged by flood, the King moved to Istana Balai Besar in 1844.People then referred to it as Kota Baru/new city/new fort.It later became Newcastle or Kota Bharu)

Saturday, November 12, 2011

KB trip

kita suka bergambar. :)

we had coconut drinks here

i love the colours

Pantai Cahaya Bulan, KB is a beauty

cincau jagung (that yellow drink Nik is having) is very famous in KB

From left: Azam, Nik, me and Ilani
at 'wau' restaurant

Ilani's family

us at a kb small reunion of old frens

Friday, November 11, 2011

Greetings from Kota Bharu

We flew in yesterday.Nik has a function at the Istana Kelantan. Cuaca is good.KB looks good from the air.

I like the cuisine here.Lunch nasi berlauk on daun pisang..kari (or was it kuzi?) ayam kampong.Wough...panjat ceiling!
Malam makan satay itik serati (OMG!) and we had like 3 glasses of fruit know how much semuanya? RM20 (2 orang makan). In KL easily close to RM40.

But I find the textile mahal here (tudung). Mcm harga KL.In fact may be cheaper in KL. Harga rumah pun I hear mahal (sewa pun mahal.Rumah terrace setingkat sewanya RM1000). Haiyo..

Prog hari ini: Pasar Khatijah and will try to persuade Nik to go to Pulau Besar but today Friday.Mungkin tough sikit and we have a small reunion with NZ alums at 9 pm tonite.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Of Rasa Sayang Eh, Negara Ku and Other Blues (Helmy's fb notes)

On Rasa Sayang Eh - to my ears, it's obviously Portuguese in rhythm and structure in spite of the claim by some Indonesians. On Negaraku, the popular story is that the Perak State Anthem (which Negara ku is based on) was based on the Indonesian song Terang Bulan (circa 1920s) which was originally based on a "Hawaiian" song entitled Mamula Moon by Felix Mandehlson ... Well, this is nothing but a myth as first, Indonesia did not exist in the 1920s as its official independence date is 17th August 1945. Second, Mamula Moon as recorded by Mendehlson was officially composed in 1947 which is more than 20 years after Terang Bulan became popular in the Nusantara. Third, the first official rendition / performance of the Perak State Anthem was in 1901 during the installation of King Edward VII and this clearly was before Terang Bulan became popular. Fourth, the Perak State Anthem traced its roots to the French song La Rosalie which was composed by Pierre-John de Beranger (1780 - 1857) that was popular in the Seychelles Islands as Ma Fiancee Soyez Toujours Constante (MFSTC) during the period when Sultan Abdullah Muhammad Shah II, the 26th Sultan of Perak (1874 -1876), was exiled to the Seychelles circa 1877 - 1895. Based on the accepted "official" dates as per above, the following can be deduced : La Rosalie was composed in the 19th Century and became popular in the Seychelles where it was "heard" by Raja Mansor ibni Sultan Abdullah who later in 1901, recommended to Sultan Idris I of Perak for the music of the Perak State Anthem to be based on MFSTC and later, once the lyrics was composed, the State Anthem was officially known as Allah Lajutkan Usia Sultan (ALUS). In the 1920s, the Malay song Terang Bulan was reportedly composed as a Bangsawan song and initially became popular in Singapore and later to the whole of Nusantara especially in what is now Indonesia. Only in the 1940s was Mamula Moon composed in the US as a Hawaiian song which then became popular globally. For the record, it was decided during Merdeka that the Federation of Malaya's National Anthem be based on the Perak Anthem ALUS with the appropriate change in lyrics as well as having the chorus repeated twice.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Ibadah korban

the special one

Ibadah korban is often taken lightly cos' in this part of world (except maybe Kelantan and Kedah?), everyone thinks Raya Eidul Fitri lagi besar maknanya.Sambut lebih dari sebulan now.

We try to do korban every year.The fun of it selain it as an ibadah is the community work in distributing the meat for the needy. The surau we usually go to during this time of the year is so sophisticated (they grew over the years): alat2 machine nak potong tulang, penimbang daging yang canggih dan tiang besi nak gantung daging2 yang besar2 itu semua sudah ada) :last year they did 7 ekor lembu.This year meningkat 9 (it would have been 10 had not my nephew screwed up the plan nak buat our korban there...lembu tak cukup quorum org-lah, lembu hilanglah, tuan punya lembu hilang-lah..ah geram...)

When finally quorum dah cukup, tuan punya lembu pulak beyond reach utk berakad jual-beli (lembu dah ada!) Akhirnya my nephew jumpa lembu baru and by 3 pm lembu itu dibawa ke sebatang anak sungai (so pretty! tak tau pulak ada stream ni so close to my house..about 3 km away) So lembu ini yang sebelum ini juga telah buat high drama (dia lari masuk hutan tetapi dapat dikejar oleh squad korban lembu) pun dibaringkan di tepi kali.Lembu ini cukup sifatnya.My bro in law (ustaz) kata haram mengorbankan lembu yang cacat sama ada cacat matanya walaupun sebelah aja atau tercarit telinganya, dll and he said he had seen korban went on despite the lembu being not perfect.Pahala korban tidak dapat, hanya ia menjadi sembelihan biasa so please folks, check your lembu sebelum dikorbankan.It must be perfect.

I have been cooking Raya eve and on Raya (lunch).Fresh meat bagus utk masak apa2.I marinated them with barbecue sauce and goreng.Nice.I did sweet sour fish also.Hey, I still have it OK? (memasak skill nih). Tapi tak boleh lawan Lady of Leisure (bila nak keluar buku masak ni?)

Selamat Hari Raya Eidul Adha.I'm still down with flu (and now batuk)

Friday, November 04, 2011

Gambar2 sekitar lawatan ke Singapura

You see that black thing keliling kubah tu? They are botol kicap given by community members as part of ownership in the mosque building (Masjid Sultan, Spore)

Jason @ Ibrahim, the mosque guide with new recruits

Prof. Kirpal Singh and his guest writers

with Filipino poet, Krip Yuson
at a session of the Spore Writers' Festival at SMU

kat art gallery masjid

also at the art gallery staircase

with the chairman of mosque

kita suka bergambar

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Almost the end of the year!

playing kites at Marina Barrage

rooftop playing ground

with a pet

Hi folks, it's hard to believe that the year is coming to an end already.November! December and 2012 is here!

I was in Singapore last Friday. Mcm2 kita tengok (Spore ni mcm magic..kejap je berubah2). Dr Haslina and I managed to catch a session of the Spore Writers' Festival at Singapore Management Uni. (on American writers). Nanti gambarnya kemudian.

Then we had a series of meetings for CERDAS.Insyaallah some good networking done with a couple of orgs.Kita juga jadi saksi kpd a lady converting to Islam at the Galaxy building (they are also very2 organisedlah the Muslim orgs in Spore).Razali took us around in his sportive car.Haha.

In between mestilah menyopping kan? Arab St dan segala new malls yang sempat kita ukur, kita ukur.Kita juga pi Marina Barrage where we saw Sporeans pi berpicnic (dalam bangunan..on the roof top where ada padang rumput utk org main layang2) Dr H looked at me and said "kesiannya..." (but hey, you'd get a nice oceanic view from the top of the building ok?)
Tapi tak leh la lawan kita berpicnic dalam hutan kat Msia..running streams..akar2 kayu yang boleh kita buat mcm tali tarzan crossing the river bank to the other...berkelah dalam bangunan/atas bumbung bangunan! Only in Spore! walhal kat Bukit Timah tu byk lagi hutannya...dan empangannya...

Anyway, kita suka org2 Spore.Baik2lah! And we learnt a lot from their excellent ways of organising themselves esp in mosque management and all.Kalau org nak masuk Islam, dia tapis dulu: ada paksaan ke tidak.Then dia suruh buat 2 courses: course fardu ain and course solat.Dah pass ni baru boleh ucap shahadah secara rasmi (dapat kad khas bukti dia Islam).At the ceremony pun ustaz bagi a short tazkirah on the rights of a Muslim.PERKIM kita tak tau la caranya mcmana.I have yet to visit and compare.