Thursday, March 30, 2006


What outside is actually from inside which have been influenced by external elements..what I mean is what ever come out from us either idea or thought are a collection of substance from surrounding that has been around us for years, months or minutes. Our mind and brain are the most complicated and genius creation and gift from God which could absorb every single thing. The we experience those the longer we remember it and sometimes a short span experience but crucial might gives a significant impact to our life. Some people would express what they feel through painting, poem, essay, music, sculpture and what ever form of expression allowed. Expression is an appreciation, appreciation of oneself, of culture, civilization, heart and soul, journey and transition as well as God. Some are good at expressing through cartoon as what Datuk Lat did. He travelled from a small town in Ipoh to Kuala Lumpur to pursue his dream as cartoonist just like his idol: Raja Hamzah. A journey from a small town to a big city might be a big transition period for a young lad but deep down inside he is just a normal humble kampung boy.
There was a documentary on Astro yesterday on Datuk Lat, it was a sincere biography from somebody who wants to be famous and then feeling uneasy and trying to aviod all the attention and admiration.
From his art work it shows that his childhood experience is the most significant and memorable to him, every detail has been composed and presented well until one could dive into his world..from her English teacher with bee hive hair (Mrs Hew), to traditional houses, kampung games and a lot more element that we could never get now.

In this fast moving era, form of expression has evolved from chinese brush and ink to airbrush and latest we have more advance software that could create lively and soulful images, with all this latest technology everybody could have their own creation..and not to forget is also kind of expression..words and pictures..

How fast things are moving, Pentium D or whatever, still the brain need to be maintain, this is the most powerful processor that we could never replaced.

Hope and dream


Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Come out and play

I didn't follow the Commonwealth Games everyday but I just keep up to date with the medal collection from the newspaper. Poor Nicole who have tried so hard under pressure to maintain her title..

During my childhood time, kids will play outdoor games according to season, if it is Piala Thomas, then everybody will insist their parents to buy a racket, not necessary Yonex..anything that can serve, RM 20 racket will do..main pun depan rumah..kira ok la, masa tu dongak ke langit nampak shuttle cock..time berangin pun tak kisah, belasah je..demam main badminton will only last around 1 the end, the racket were hang inside store room, or lying under the bed or maybe dah terputus tali. Childrens of our time are more adventurous with more playing time spending outside the house exploring semak samun, climbing trees, 'tuju tin' and not forgotting playing 'kawin-kawin'..kecik2 dah nak kawin!!..budak2 la katakan..

There were also time when kite flying was the 'game', I was still in secondary at that time. Kites of various sizes and colours has been design using bambo, butter paper and decorated with colored paper or sugar paper. Most popular kite design was the 'wau bulan', without the intricate elements as originally came from the East Coast. Some who were more adventurous will add tails and came out with not-so-common shape.
December is the season for kite since the wind is stronger (musim timur) and the weather is quite pleasant. I like to watch the kite fly high up like there is no boundary, the feeling was surreal, laying on the wooden floor while looking at the sky through the window..colourful kite behind a blue sky, one could lost themselves looking at this. There were nasty kids who brushed those shattered glass on to the rope, this way they cut cut their friends rope if they happen to cross each other kite..some of them will suffer a little cut on their finger, but this never stop them. Boys will always be boys..

There is another 'game' or sport/ martial art that was popular : silat. This is one of the most ancient art form in our traditional Malay culture, rooted maybe hundreds years back. Generally silat in our region are almost the same,there are four kinds of silat:spiritual, self-defense, artistic silat and sports silat. There are many types of silat and varies according to their ideology, such as silat cekak, silat gayung,silat lincah, silat name a few and Kedah are well known with 'silat cekak'.
Since I life in 'kampung' environment, we have a spacious compound infront of my house which has become a social space for kids play area, playing 'polis-polis' and even a funeral event for the Chinese where they burn paper house. One of my relative used to be 'guru silat', I did not remember which silat.. There was this sandy area where he erected bambo post and clad with gunny sack, training session were only held at night, we could hear their voices from the gunny sack..'Hahh-hahh!!..'it sounds mystical at night especially during the full moon, maybe it was just my imagination, too much reading 'Bercakap dengan jin' (Tamar Jalis).

I had 'no professional' training in silat, but my father thought us simple basic steps of silat,enough to defend ourselves. Silat compared to other martial art are more artistic and faster in terms of hand movement and more powerful..this is what my father always emphasize. Silat is a combination of traditional and spiritual as well as self discipline, we have to follow what our 'guru' told us to do, strong body and big muscles are not enough, it is the power of mind that matters. One who wish to 'berguru' normally need to go through certain stages and they are required to complete each stages in order to graduate.

It is part of our cultural value that we should not neglect, this is what makes us different..during my uncle's wedding we had silat performances infront of the bride and bridegroom complete with background music of serunai and gendang (from a cassette). My father and few of his friends moves gracefully while the crowd looking at them and at that time I was so proud to be his daughter. I was so obsessed with silat after that and start buying silat magazine: 'Pendekar' and imagine myself wearing a black custom and head band kicking and punching like a lady warrior..

Hopefully silat will be in our society even though there are many other alternative of sports and martial art. It would not die as long as we believe in it and appreciate it as a continuation of our civilisation.

Until today I still got the moves..silat cekak..cekak pinggang je la..

Friday, March 17, 2006

The many faces of suffering

Trip to Linggi yesterday was not that bad as I expected, driving alone for more than three hours along plantation area with too many cows crossing. Life in kampung are much more peaceful compared to us in conrete jungle, even though their house looks like falling apart, but still they could give us a smile from their heart.

When we travel, we will always look for something different, something new or better than what we have now in our country. Sometimes the thing that we didn't expect to see is the best thing to remember and make us realise that we are lucky in some way. Until today, i could still recall all the places that I've been to, all the great building by the master architect and the wonder of the world, but the most memorable images is not the Eiffel or Taj, but the faces of the children and elderly who suffer in silent. The faces that you are not going to forget..forever.

I went to Tehran in May 2001 after almost 10 days touring around Europe, it was a humble beginning seeing everything in brown from the aircraft..mount and building looks almost similar. It was a spectacular landscape, Black hijab over a brown background. The ambience was totally different, great development, fast moving transit and suddenly everything change. No more blond in black leather jacket with Gucci bag walking confidently across the street, the sight has been replaced by Iranian women with black hijab. I don't really bother about the women, coz I can't see and interpret anything behind that hijab, but I was touch looking at little childrens who keep on following us, asking for money..We have the same situation here in Malaysia, but then seeing them in foriegn country gives a different impact and the men also have this kind of expression, a face which having a burden or something, I don't know how to describe, but next time on tv when you see Iranian President: Ahmedinijad, try to look carefully and you'll know what I mean, look at the eyes..deep inside. They have sufferred a lot, but yet there are among the strongest and humble compared to other Middle East country.

I thought I've seen it all in Iran, but when I was in Calcutta, India last year, I had the same experience but even worst that what we see in tv, its far from reality, India with high population can't afford to distribute prosperity and wealth to each state. The road is crowded by pedestrian not the vehicle, children were running around with no shoes, white shirt that has turn grey, smelly and some with flies on their face. Old woman with stick wandering asking for some rupee, woman with a baby on her arm..chanting..'Are baba, moina baba..' looking for attention and sympathy to feed the baby. Until today her voice is still in my memory, it's hard to let it go.

In Calcutta most women breast feed their children until the age of two, the don't mind about their skinny body with lack of vitamins and no proper medications, and they even seldom go for maternity check up. Women are to take care of the husband and children, no time for window shopping, each days are filled with house chore, pumping water from community tap, going up and down the house which shared by five family..some of them will bath in 'pukeri' aka big pond (air mati)which surrounded their villages, the source of this water is not from normal underground source but from rain algae is a common sight. But most of them hardly being infected by skin diseases, God give them something that we don't have.

The day I was leaving I thought that I'm not going to cry, maybe tough enough..but I was crying like a baby and hug them like we never gonna met again. I can't forget their sacrifice and I can't pay their good heart with anything except my pray..
Bod Babu face still coming, I hardly spoke to him..

To my hubby : If you read this, I just want you to know that I really love you and appreciate what we have and what we don't have yet..really treasure the moment spent in Calcutta meeting your fathers side for the first time and hope there will be next time for us..

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

'Do not blog about your work'

Found this article in a magazine at MPH on blogging, covering from how to start one, history of weblog etc. There is on section mentioning about what to blog and what not to eg our work
They hightlight that there are people who have been fired after the employer found out that they have been blogging their company, about the director or staff that they don't like. The employer might think that blogger are using office facilities for their own personal interest.
There is also a case where an airline crew published her photo while wearing company's suit has been call for question.

It is ok to express our feeling and thought in this mode of publication but we need to draw a line, how far we could be frank and sincere..I think that whether it's thru blogsphere, irc, website, books, mag, banners, advertisement or whatever, we need to be sensetive enough to realise that there are people out there who might opposed to our idea or thought.

I did blog about my office previously, hopefully the boss didn't trace anything..;-)
Happy blogging to all blogger.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Scent of Midnight

Arrived last nite at 12.00am from Penang, it was a horrible journey with bumpy ride and bad headache. The weather back there were too hot..feels like in Agra, India, thought I had migrane..hopefully nothing serious.

The house looks the same as 2 days ago, except for my jasmine, blooming..yang jatuh ada tiga kuntum..yang tengah kembang ada 10 kuntum..the balcony smells so mesti terlebih baja warna pink that we bought last few months..pokok melur ni my father yang semai, then we brought it here since the balcony look hard and empty, thought of giving some life to that space and it end up this way..some people says that it's spooky..bau harum waktu malam, mesti ada ke? tak boleh percaya sangat ni.. since tanam pokok melur ni, dah tak payah pakai air freshner lagi, every nite around 9 something hubby would harvest the flower..tu kerja dia every nite, tak sabar tunggu bunga tu kembang.

Pokok asalnya ada di Alor Setar, planted by arwah Tok U, an old lady staying next to mak's house, she like to plant roses and other potted plant especially jasmine. She was 'our florist' at that time, i remember whenever there is a wedding , people will asked her to prepare sirih junjung..i pun akan sibuk duduk tepi 'U' tengok dan kadang2 menyibuk nak tolong..she was 60 plus back then and i was in secondary school. I learn indirectly from her, the way she cut the leaves, arrange the flower, wrapping the gambir and folding daun sirih. She was my mentor and i'm her protege who tried to her arrange her own sirih junjung last two years..jadi juga even though tak tinggi macam yang 'U' buat.

Back to the pokok melur story, after she passed away, the only thing that she left were her house which then being torn apart and sold by his relative and that precious pokok Mak (grandma) always says that tangan I 'sejuk', that's why tanam apa pun i pun potong la batang pokok tu, semai dalam banyak pasu...and pass to my mother in law, my parents..macam movie..'A walk in the cloud'..

So,now each nite i sleep with jasmine on my hair....

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Kedah River

This entry is a continuation of my previous post.
River has been the greatest force in human civilization, a metropolitan derived from a small village which started by the river and slowly develop. It is significant as source of life, moe of transportation and to some they are holy like a Ganges River. If Paris could be proud of their River Seine and Britain with Thames..I appreciate this God gift which is priceless.

It used to be deeper and wider with 'nipah tree' along the bank and 'pokok kiambang' with purple flower floating. Some people says that whenever there are nipah tree definitely there will be a crocodiles..I haven't seen any croc yet..biawak besar ada le..My mother told me that there are place somewhere near the Pagoda where it's quite sandy and that was a spot for 'buaya berjemur'..dulu2 during her time..
Even though our house are just about 30 meters from the river, we hardly experience any flood except for the 'banjir besar' back in the 80's..ankle deep..And that was the last time.

During my childhood, I hardly play by the river and that is why I can't swim until today..What a reason..coz normally people who live by the river or beach definitely knows how to swim..Maybe they are more adventurous or maybe my family are just being cautious..kalau anak lelaki maybe boleh..I remember sleeping at night hearing a roaring sound from fishing boat..Most of the fisherman are from the otherside of the river. All my life staying there, I only took a sampan ride once, that was 22 years ago and that was during the Sultan's Birthday. There were a big float from government department mostly, their sampan were decorated according to a concept, I could clearly remember there was one boat with fisherman theme..their's were complete with fishing net, hens and ducks..Even a sandy mount..There were also a swan-like concept with pretty girls smiling and waving their hands..It was so exciting but all through the ride I hold my hand tight to the side of sampan..takut juga, dah la tak tahu berenang..Until today,during Sultan's birthday there will be a celebration by the river especially pertandingan menangkap itik..hmm

There is one more story about this river that need to be told otherwise it would be complete- 'hantu air'...the river is significant with it's ghost story, some people said that they saw a shadow of a man standing by the river and some told that they saw a woman..and many other haunted stories..whatever it is the river has claimed too many lives, some were drowned and some purposedly jumped into the river..mental..

Historically Kedah River is significant with Terusan Wan Mat Saman where it was the main source for the farmers. It has become a natural heritage of Kedah even though the nipah tree were no longer is now replaced by a promenade and normally occupied by veterans playing dam...

View towards Kedah river with Telekom tower as a background

Signboard showing new development along the river bank

Heavy Downpour...

It was chaotic and panic situation last 30 minutes at the office at level 13 Menara Summit, it was raining heavily with strong wind until we could feel the vibration on the glass panel. Dust were flying down from aircond ducting like a snow..rasa macam building ni swayed a bit..Maybe panic kot..But we almost lost our boss, he was trying to grab the window handle to closed it with one hand while the other hand attached to a window frame..Luckily the other staff saw him struggling and quickly grab his waist..fuhh...kalau tak habis..The wind was so strong like it could suck us out..macam dalam movie...Me and other friend dalam kalut-kalut sempat cabut turun..We don't dare to use lift and slowly going down using the escape staircase..rasa lemah lutut pulak..Reached at level 5 and stuck there for a while, the management lock the grill at the staircase and the lift is not working...This is against Bomba requirement..gile betul!! Lift lobby kat ground level banjir sikit..tempias..nak turun ubah kereta..guna service lift..rosak juga- door jam, tak boleh satu lagi kes poor at last dapat turun bawah dalam keadaan gelabah, ubah kereta from B3 to B1..lega....syukur..
tapi dalam office masuk air sikit..nasib baik PC ok tak ada short circuit..

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Tempat jatuh lagi dikenang..

I spend a lot of my childhood time closed with my grandma even though my family house is just next door. Maybe becoz I was their first cucu,so dapat attention lebih sikit. I call my grandma as 'mak' because I heard my mom, aunty and uncle call her 'mak'..I was just a little girl, and call my mother, 'mama'. This is a sketch of 'mak' house in Seberang Perak, a typical Kedah house with raised floor and attap roofing. The original layout consist of one big bedroom (rumah ibu), bedroom 1&2, kitchen, hall, verandah or what we call as 'beranda'. The bathroom was at ground floor and original entrance door is facing the Kedah River. As long as I can remember, the house was made of round solid timber with timber panel for wall and partly combined with bambo weave.Most of these original structure are still there for more than 40-60years now, with newspaper and decorative paper still intact to the column.

There are split levels to differentiate the space. Family area is higher than hall, and the kitchen drop about almost 250mm from the family area. Most traditional house were designed with nature and surrounding value in mind, therefore the design could be considered as successful. There are ample lighting and fenestration, function meet aesthetic with every piece of timber will be reasonably crafted. One thing that I really like about this house is the louvered panel with vertical timber piece as a control mechanism.

This house actually has been handed over by her mother who planted jambu air tree in the middle of the compound. It was a big tree which provide not only shade but also as my favourite place to escape.I remember whenever it rain heavily that nite, the next morning we will straight go and collect those buah jambu on the ground, it was so exciting...the trees in a way has giving me a space to jump into my imaginary world, there were pokok duit-duit all around its trunk with 'lumut' everywhere. It was surreal for a little girl who likes to dive in her own ocean of fantasy. The died shortly after mak's mother died at the age of 90+. Mak told me that the tree has been planted her mother, so i guess it must be more than 30years considering it's big radius of trunk...Now..2006, the trees has gone, nipah trees has disappeared but mak's house is still there with new extension. I was so lucky to have a chance to learn how to weave attap roofing from mak...ahh...nostalgia pulak..I should call her tonite..

I've been planning to documentate the history of the house and Seberang Perak in general since there are few significant building such as the school neraby who Che Det, Daim, Awang Had used to school there. Started halfway but still searching for more info..

Anyway, home sweet home...there are lots of thing to tell about this house, maybe in next entry..for now I want to go 25 years back....pusing jam ke and white world...

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Subuh yang hening..

This photo was taken last 4 weeks around 5.20am..bulan penuh..So I've been waiting to captured a photo of perfect full moon..But these photo are not that clear coz I was shaking, actually 'mamai' lagi masa tu..full moon has always been associated with supernatural things, behavioral changes, tidal..etc..but want thing that reminds me whenever its full moon is this song...'malam bulan dipagar bintang, nampak seri bila dipandang..bulan bintang lampu alam'....from the movie Pendekar Bujang Lapuk. This is my all time favourite movie

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Moving on..

I went through NUR magazine on the topic of 'job hopping' which they pointed that there are pro and con on this behavior or habit or maybe culture of moving from one workplace to another. In my case its not the habit or attitude but more into self satisfaction and achievement and goal that we have set for ourselves. I've started preparing my new and revised portfolio, hope this time around it will be more impressive and convincing rather than just 'tangkap muat' like last interview..
I need to get out of this place now..The time has come for me to move on..I could just be comfortable and enjoy staying here with not much work, terrible client, snobbish employer and heavy traffic plus long travel distance..OR find a better place which could offer a better chance of improvement, so tak la rasa mcm makan gaji buta..I don't want to be suck into a comfort zone and stuck at such horrible place, I rather go to the unknown than being a sponge..

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Blood in my mouth..

I think that I shouldn't watch any crime stories or ghost stories anymore before sleep coz every single details will appeared again and again in my dream. For the last few days the same plot of dream emerged, my mouth was covered with blood, it was like I'm having some kind of diseases...I was choked with blood in my mouth..There were few people with me but they can't do much to help.It was so real until I woke and it feels like the blood is still in there..This act of waking up in the middle of the nite has make me tired...I had this dream 3 times since last week, maybe I was too tired driving everyday from Putrajaya to Subang Jaya, or maybe too much horror movie..It's just a mind game..But I must admit that I hate waking up in the middle of the nite in shocked!...Lemah semangat kot? Sometimes people says that a dream is like a signal or a warning, I don't know how true it is...orang cakap selalunya maksud mimpi tu kalau mimpi jumpa duit- meaning kita nak hilang duit..macam tu?..