Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Perlumbaan tikus

Rat race.

My research team and I locked ourselves up at one of the hotels at the heart of the city to focus on writing 6 papers to meet our KPIs. This rat race tires me. I am tired chasing my own tail. Gitu. Now I hear nak naik JUSA B kena produce 5 ISI articles. Weii...berak ijau nanti! (kita ni kena ngajar, supervise, jadi administrator, mark theses, mark exams, organise international conferences, itu ini.Hadoi).

Ramai orang yang kena retrenched tu patut bersyukur mereka tak lagi jadi hamba kpd sesiapa.You don't need much to live. Just don't desire what you cannot afford.Pastu buat lah kerja2 utk akhirat pula.

But we had a productive time at the 4 days retreat (mmg kena kurung habis..caught my RAs sleeping bawah duvet..I menjerit kata ini bukan  holiday..ini work retreat. They said but we work at night..siang kami tidur.Haha. I tak kisah..I perah juga keringat mereka..they have to learn that it is not easy to be a scholar. Alhamdulillah they delivered their papers on the last day..sempat depa jumped  into the pool lagi 30 mins before checked out).

Hari ni semua datang kerja macam baru balik dari overseas dgn jetlag.I had 4 hours of sleep on day 3.Day 4 alhamdulillah paper siap utk dikirim kepada scopus journal.

Now I'm told nak naik pangkat Jusa B, tulis 5 ISI articles. Nampak mcm kena pencen awal.For a peace of mind and for my general well-being!

Some pics.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Kak Fidah

Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz gave a talk at Z's office today.Z said while she didn't agree with some of the stuffs Tan Sri said, she (Z) loved listening to her.Z thinks she's funny.Tan Sri does not believe in gender divide...although she didn't say it but her message was this: she's up there on her own merit not because she's a woman.I told Z ini tak betul...Tun Fatimah yg suakan dia kpd para pemimpin lelaki..Tun Razak then agreed to her nomination as someone in Wanita.Then Tun M pun didn't push her out.But kita admitlah mmg she's excellent (I always think she would be the best PM we could have had) but jgnlah menidakkan women's support for her meteoric rise in politics juga - jatuh pun sbb women, kan?

She was telling how she insisted everyone at MITI had to learn English every Friday..tak kira kerani ke Pengarah..especially tukang taip surat cos' she caught the typist typed warehouse as wherehouse.Then someone corrected it as whore house.That did it and everyone had to learn English if they were to stay on at MITI.Wough.Suka.

Banyak lagi lah cerita wanita bijak ni.She said AI and MY were her students..tht was why she boleh ckp suka dia with the two..sapa berani lawan cikgu, she said jokingly.

Nik came bck frm his teambuilding retreat by recommending me his consultant.Worth the money they paid him, he said (which was reasonably low). But by UIA standard, it would be a wee bit too much, ok?

Monday, January 18, 2016

The other Nazir, the other Osama

What a day.
First, Osama visited from Jerusalem bawak a suitcase (full of stuffs for me and for me to buy!) He told me it was difficult to fly out but he had permission from the Supreme Court to fly back and see his Supervisor.

They can only pray at Al Aqsa once a month now. Last Ramadan he took his children and made them pray two special prayers for me.SubhanaAllah, I'm so touched.But much needed, alhamdulillah.I ni mcm2 sakit dah..spine, lutut, itu ini.Moga2 Allah beri kesihatan so that I can pray in Al Aqsa too one day.

Z and I tak habis2 cerita pasal Nazir and the other Nazir.Nazir Razak buat lawak in his talk today.Someone asked about 1MDB.He said it's a 4-letter institution.Then he went on a bit on the current situation of the country saying if you see things don't work, don't paint a beautiful pic of it.It's not going to help the country. He said we must participate in politics even if it's on instagram. ha ha..sindir diri sendiri!

Then he spoke about his early career.How he almost worked at Shell but surat dpt lambat cos' they didn't know where to put him so he joined the banking industry.He said he was excited about speaking at Menara Shell to a group of people who could have been his colleagues.Super cute.
There were more funny stories but none more exciting than me rewiring up with Dr Khairil who had left Shell and founded his own org and setting up an O&G academy. In a climate where things are uncertain, there seems to be a lot more opportunities.Rezeki is from Allah. We must not have any fear.Bak kata my aruah mak, ulat dalam batu pun boleh hidup.

Here's me and Osama.The keras tangan set was made by his sister.I tolong jual to help him pay his fees.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

The weekend that was

We often joke that we have a sad life cos' our family conversations centre around Nazir, Nadra and Nayly (sometimes Nabil).But the kids are so funny.I documented quite a bit on Nabil and Nayly as they were growing up but Nadra kurang sbb dia lambat bercakap.There were no stories.With Nazir, it's almost the same but Z loves to take them out on weekends so yesterday, we took them out to Ikano..bookshop, art class (but rm100 an hour per pax...forget it.Cekik darah betul). Nazir dah bossy..naik escalator sampai 10 times.Badan tu kalau ringan, takpa.

By the time we sent them home, kita semua mcm nak pengsan but we got our dope for a week (talking about the kids at breakfast and dinner).

Nadra speaks well but pelat. Can you make me my shushu, she asked me.I said no...I don't know how to make shushu cos' I don't have babies anymore (mak sedaranya pun sama naik! Haha). She said yesh, you can.All you have to do is put hot water in the bottle, 4 sshcoop of milk, then you sshakeit.It is at this point, Z and I would be laughing berguling-guling.Pas tu tanya, what did you eat today? I ate chicken schuup (chicken soup).

Bibik had her day off but kwn dia refused to let her stay with them.Kesian Bibik.Nasib baik she bumped into org kg dia who welcomed her and would always allow her to have her day off there once a month.Hissh..sesama dia pun tak jujur (kat telefon mulut manis ajak dtg.Kwn tu dtg, kena halau pulak).I told her to bersabar.Ragam manusia ni mcm2.Dia pun sama..baru kenal dah nak pi tidur (rumah my day cleaners dulu).Tapi kesian juga dengar cerita kena buat mcm tu.Kalau kita overseas, kita tak buat mcm tu.

5 papers left to mark. Tak larat dah I.Besok pulak le.Berpinor baca essay bdk2 ni.

Monday, January 11, 2016

A year closer

I keep hearing what my friend Luqman said at the Ibadah Camp morning walk last year: if you wake up and feel pain here there, everywhere and you forget things..you know what lies ahead you (dia mengingatkan mati)

With every bday, we are a year closer.This year I decided to spend time with friends and families.It is much more fun and meaningful that way.Sorang2 pun tak berselera tengok birthday cake but Z bought me a nice one this year from a French bakery.I shared with people at work.Bibik cooked 2 kilo nasi lemak, Nat's mom buat sambal so everyone had nasi lemak at work today.Wonderful, wonderful feeling, alhamdulillah.

Last night the duo in my life took me to Gobo at Traders.First time for all of us.We have decided this: bday gal/boy will choose his/her own fav place to celebrate so that no one complains. :)) Dah le trainees yang tak reti amende pun (nak cut cost le tew), presentation dia (walaupun sedap) mcm leftovers digaul2.Hadoi. We are spoilt by Marini's OK? But the black forest cake which Z bought and brought to the restaurant saved the day and we had fun laughing over things.

Whatever it is, always bersyukur that we are still here to collect pahala lagi. Must make the most of it.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Jan babies

Call it friendship week or party time but I had another fun time with my friends who went to New Zealand for our various English degrees (some did literature, others did linguistics or TESL). Initially 9 said yes, two had to withdraw cos' their moms suddenly fell ill (sorang masuk ICU) and the third one was on duty in Melaka and could not make it in time.

We all wore purple (the official colour of old aged women according to the poem sent by Ruzy).We also brought spare shoe to wear sebelah lain to mark the age where we'd wear baju/telekong terbalik, kasut lain sebelah etc.Our point is: celebrate it and don't deny old age.Haha.

Oh what fun (just like the day before with my sch friends). We kidnapped a saxophonist who was playing at one of the stores not far from our high tea place (Harrods restaurant - after failing to get the Orchid Room at the Majestic). So Mr Goh serenaded all 4 of us a birthday song (he played it twice).Memang gempaklah like the place kita punya.We had three video clips on this but it's so embarassing as the golden girls let loose so I will not put it here. ;)

My friends Azura & Azah, seronok sgt with the event (everyone gave gifts to each other regardless dia Jan baby ke tak) sampai cakap: we must do this every month.Idak le sayang oiii...mak byk kerja kat ofis.

Earlier I was at Makcik Ma's kenduri.Her new cucu.She insisted that I sat with a Datin Sri at their dining instead duduk kat luar.There were other Datins and Datoks that bdk catering tu started calling me Dato juga.Ha ha, lantak kau la nak. :))  Then as we were leaving baru I tau that I was sitting next to TPM's wife.My, she's so nice.Kita dok cerita pasal the tahfiz school she was involved in.At that
time I didnt know who she was (but did wonder why people fussed over her). At the end of lunch, we were all hugging each other and saying it was really nice meeting you.Truth be told, best not to know who's who so that a genuine friendship can take place.

Makcik Ma tetap anggun macam biasa.She was telling everyone I masuk Melodi talking (being interviewed by a TV anchor cos' she read my blog entry on MJ) on Michael Jackson masa he died dulu.That was a longgggg time ago but she remembered!

Bless Makcik Ma.

Friday, January 08, 2016

Childhood friends

If there's anything good about fb and whatsapp groups is that they bring childhood friends together.

Jag (or Dishi as we used to call her at school) is back for Xmas hols in Msia.She's migrated to Melbourne and in those days in Raub, you don't just know your friend but your sisters and your friends sisters or brothers were all wired.We knew most of our friends' parents as well regardless of race and religion.Time lapar or haus, kita makan dan minum selamba je kat rumah kawan2. We would be respectful of our religious diet e.g if they visited my home during raya..no beef rendang would be served. Fui..nostalgic gila bila ingat.

So yesterday some of us got together after work and had high tea at the Apartment at KLCC Suria.Not many could make it.About 5. We kept shifting location..there would be more if we met at PJ Hilton.Alas..Jag does not drive so we settled for KLCC. It must have looked odd seeing us screaming and hugging each other: me in tudung, Jessica, Lay Har, Annabelle (who had just touched down from holidaying in Sri Lanka) and Jag, now looking very blonde. Jag was against each of us ordering individual meal because there would be a lot of wastage she said.So we shared food (itu pun tak habis).Wow, must remember this.So the bill came very cheap.Unbelievable!

We had fun talking silly of our past.We went to kindy together..a lot to be grateful for for keeping the friendship this long.Showed our pics to my friends at work.Mei said oh your friends look gorgeous, what skincare do you guys use.I said all Raub people look like that..it is the happiest place in Msia (keluar dlm paper, ok?) and since it has emas, penduduknya tidak perlu menjadi wargamas!Mei said the next time she bumped into us, she would scrape our skin for gold.Haha.

It is my birthday week so a lot of activities with friends and relatives.Watch this space.

Monday, January 04, 2016

Rawa news

What a year to begin with! So much excitement so early in the year.And all for being a Rawa in search of Rawa roots.Dr Bubbles, are you reading this? Mesti gembira if I share with you some of the findings I have so far.Bak kata Prof Virginia Hooker in one of her emails to me, "elusive people".Kata dia I have discovered more than what she knew.Ini yang peliknya.Why is there so little literature of orang Rawa ni.If there is, semua sama ada mitos, atau demonisation of the Rawas. One blogger wrote asal usul mereka adalah from Iskandar Zulkarnain (cited Sultan Taufik as early descendant).Macamana nak prove, kan? DNA apa?

Then a Dutch scholar who I was in touch with (via Prof Tineke Hellwig yang baik budi macam Prof Virginia Hooker) Dr Kloos has kindly scanned satu shocking article on the Rawas.I will write an article on this for a local newspaper.Get it properly documented. My family semua naik angin mendengar apa yang ditulis di dalam article ini dan syukur alhamdulillah saya berjaya mengesan penulisnya! Saya akan interbiu dia sebaik dia kata ya.MasyaAllah..separuh dunia saya mengejar dia.Ada seorang lagi yang saya kejar..they are all in their 70s or late 60s.May Allah ease my chasing.Haha.

But basically it's not good news in this article.I'm going to speak to the other scholar for a balanced view and also compare to local Rawa writings (biasanya memuji2 kehebatan Rawa..semua nak mengaku asal usul raja dan tak boleh pijak tanah which is also helpful to create that other impression than just seeing the Rawas as baddies).

Will put the link here when the article is written and published. Setakat ini get used to these images:

Rao maknanya sawah, atau tanah pamah
Rao juga dikatakan pahlawan Majapahit (this explains why someone in Dong was saying ada jumpa pedang Majapahit di kawasan Rawa di Dong.When my cousin told me this I thought he was crazy cos' our history went back as far as early 19th century sahaja.Majapahit was a longggg way)
Raos di Sumatra were religious reformers cos' 3 people went to hajj and came back and saw how local cultures didn't fit in the real Islam.So they went to war on this (main judi, laga ayam, adat bagi lebih harta to women etc).Now cerita Hamka makes more sense why he was so much against adat.  He wanted pure Islam to be observed..tiada jurang darjat dan bahawa manusia itu semua sama dan yang membezakan mereka adalah taqwa.When he 'killed' the gf in a Dutch ship..itu adalah simbolik.Sesuatu yang tidak mengikut syarak tidak akan berjaya dunia dan akhirat.


Walaupun penulis article Rawa ini menulis ttg Rawa tidak dalam mode yang boleh membanggakan org Rawa (my siblings semua sekarang berkata we won't own up we are Rawas now...) dia juga mengatakan pengaruh puritan Rawa itu ada sehingga ke hari ini kerana roh Islam bawaan mereka menyeludup masuk melalui Kaum Muda.

Balik jadi Rawa and my female Mullah sister kata nah! sekarang nyata kenapa mereka memburuk-burukkan Rawa..mereka mempertahankan kesucian Islam..sudah tentu mereka dituduh penjahat (hari ini pastinya wahabi).

Sangat menarik, bukan? Tunggu sehingga saya dapat bercakap dgn scholar yang seorang lagi tu.Kita dengar apa kata dia pulak.