Sunday, November 18, 2012

My Central Malay School Teacher

On Sunday 18 November 2012 I attended a wedding invitation in my hometown, Seremban. The most pleasent surprise apart from meeting my old school mates from KGV Seremban was meeting my teacher from my Malay School days. It happened that he is the uncle of the host.

          When  I arrived about 11.50 am at the function, there were a few guests who also arrived early and were happily gulping down their food and drinks. It was a bright and sunny day, up to a point. I exchanged a few pleasentries with the host before getting my plate and  food and then sat at the table where Malek, my former classmate in KGV was already there earlier than me. Later on, Nasimah and Hazim followed me. As the guests began arriving in droves, Harith, the host began to call the other former classmates who had their reunion in September to let them know I was present. Rohani Yusof who was just about to sit at the next table, joined Nasimah and chatted about our school days. Malek began to remind me the nicknames of a few former classmates who came to the function and it became a sort of another get together.

           So much so I did not realise how time flies. By the time we had sat there for more than an hour, a heavy downpour followed, and it was a peak time for the guests who arrived. As we were all trapped by the pouring rain, we had no choice but stayed under the tent. Luckily the tents were placed or the tarmac road in front of Harith's house, otherwise we would be wallowing in mud.

            Then, Harith excitedly called me to meet his uncle, Cikgu Alias who taught me in standard 4, Central Malay School, Channer Road in 1954. He said I have changed much since he last saw me. I told him I remembered meeting him in Kampong Sogo after I joined the Special Malay Class together with Harith. I said to him " Cikgu, you still looked the same." I enquired about his age and he informed me that he is already 82. Alhamdulillah, it was such a pleasure to meet my teacher when I am already 67 and I suppose one is really privileged and fortunate to meet a former teacher after 58 years. I gathered earlier from Harith that Cikgu Alias became deeply religious and now stays in Kg. Batu Sesapan, Beranang, Selangor. I hope I can meet other teachers who had taught me in my early years and say a big thank you.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Obituary for a friend

In my earlier posting last Tuesday, I mentioned about my trip to Damansara Specialist Hospital to visit a friend. Yesterday, 12 November on Monday,exactly a week from seeing on his hospital bed,he passed away peacefully, "Innalillahi wainnailaihi rojiun" and "Al-Fatihah."

            At 1148 hours on Monday, I received the sad news from Dato' Yahya Yacob and after that immediately  rang up Hank. I told him to convey the news to the our former classmates from the Class of 1964 , the Federation Military College, Sg.Besi.

        At 1530 hours, Hank came to fetch me and we proceeded to the Mosque in Taman Tun Dr.Ismail for Asar prayer and followed by the Solat Jenazah (for the deceased).While we had a short stop at the automatic car wash of a petrol station at Kayu Ara, I called OP Akbar Baba to convey him the news of Zawawi's demise. Though Hamzah sent him a few messages earlier but they somehow got lost along the way.At the Mosque I met a few Old Puteras, Shaharudin Bahaudin and Yusoff Ali Zain as well as Khairudin.Dato' Yahya arrived just before the Azan. After the  prayers as  we headed to the car park I met another Old Putera whom I befriended on the E-list, OP Budin earlier went to the Hospital to find out about Zawawi and only then learned about he had departed from this world. We headed for the Bukit Kiara Muslim burial ground to witness the burial rites at about 1730 hrs. We walked from the car-park of the burial ground to the burial site a distance away, criss-crossing the numerous graves,carefully treading our steps so as not to walk on them.
                The rains poured during the burial sermon (Talqin) and many took cover under the tent set up over the freshly dug grave. Fortunately I brought my umbrella and I let others who were not prepared for rain to seek cover under the tent. By the time it was over, the downpour continued heavily and though I had the umbrella, I could not avoid getting wet as I walked back towards the car park.

           Farewell my dear friend Zawawi, and May Allah bestow His Blessings, Compassion and Mercies on your soul. May Allah forgive you and all of us and may HE place you amongst the righteous, Ameen.

Friday, November 09, 2012

Silence

In response to Haiku heights # 195 - Silence.




Stillness of the night

Lay the flickering oil lamp

In silence I wait



Thud, the welcome sound

Of the falling thorny fruit

Most awaited time



To search in the grass

The joy of picking it up

Was more than eating




During the fruit season, it was quite common during my childhood days to wait for the sound of the falling durian at my kampong in Terachi,especially at night. The sheer pleasure of looking for it in the tall grass was unforgettable. Once it was found, the joy was more than in the eating.

My Cousin Suhaimi Jaafar

                             Left;Suhaimi,Right;Azudin.                                                                                                                                                         
 
 
                              Suhaimi Jaafar @ Sam.




I have been trying many a time to get in touch with my cousin Suhaimi without any success since I last met him in 2005. So with the kind assistance of OP Azudin who is now getting streetwise as a temporary Londoner since last September, he managed to arrange for a meeting with him twice. Alhamdulillah, I learned from Azudin that he wants to come back, the only thing holding him is his lack of effort and the "niat" to pursue the matter with perseverance. Azudin has indeed done his best to persuade him that his services as a qualified chartered accountant is still badly needed at home. Thus Malay Londoners knows him as Sam the accountant. I supplicate to Allah Almighty that his intention will become a reality because he is obliged to settle the "Faraid" matters when both his parents have passed away sometime ago. I hope Suhaimi reads this and make up his mind once and for all to perform a duty which is obligatory on him for the sake of his parents who are in "Alam Barzakh" so that they rest in peace.           

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Morning Visit to Zawawi

On the morning just before breakfast on Monday 05 November, Hank called me on my mobile phone and told me that Zawawi our ex-classmate in FMC is hospitalised again. He plan to visit him at the Damansara Specialist Hospital and asked whether I would like to join him. I replied that I would go at my convenience since it would be too much of a bother for him to drive to Kelana Jaya from his house in Tropicana just to fetch me.
                             So on the following morning on Tuesday 06 November I went out at 0915 hours to visit Zawawi at the hospital. His wife and daughter were with him when I arrived and I seemed to be the first visitor amongst the Old Puteras that day. Since I have been briefed by Hank about his condition, I indicated to Zawawi not to speak much as I could see that he needed rest. He weakly told me that this is his third time in hospital, and I recalled visiting him at his former house in Taman Tun Dr.Ismail after he was discharged from Institut Jantung Negara for a mild heart attack. Now he has sold that house and moved to Kota Damansara. He seemed to be in pain and his jaundice has not cleared yet. His wife gave me an account as how they had to go to several hospitals just to find a vacant bed when he needed medical help desperately.
On the very same morning before I was about to go to the hospital, another Old Putera Dato' Yahya called me on the phone and asked whether I knew that Zawawi is hospitalised and he went to visit him on the previous evening. I replied that I was about to go to the hospital. He told me about Zawawi's medical condition and the events that lead to his present predicament. I gave Zawawi some comforting words and asked him to recite the Du'a to relieve him of the suffering. He seemed to to nod his head to indicate an acknowledgement. As I saw that he seemed to have dozed off, I told his wife that I would take my leave and said to her that we have to put our faith in Allah in such a situation and whatever effort is taken to overcome the predicament is what we can do at most but finally we leave it to Allah to determine everything. It is my silent prayer that Zawawi would pull through his most trying times with ease, InshaAllah.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Shroud



Angel Izrail

Shall come when your time is up

There is no notice




I must be prepared

To face the finality

Dressed in a white shroud




And to be lowered

To a final resting place

And resurrection




This is in response to Haiku Heights #191-Shroud.

Many avoid mentioning the final journey that awaits our exit from this mundane life, but it is inevitable. I still remember my late father's final journey on the 11th of May 2011 to be laid to rest at the Makam Tuan Hj Said in Seremban and may his soul be placed together with those who are pious, Ameen.





Friday, October 05, 2012

Home

                                           At Home with Family



My World is the home

Where the Family converges

For togetherness




Allah I thank thee

For giving me the comfort

The pleasure and joy




Without which I find

The meaning of life is none

Home where the heart is




Haiku heights prompt for the 1st week of October is "Home".

The solace and peace that a home provides is one of the greatest Blessings from Allah. What more with good neighbours and security, home is happiness.



Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Motherhood

                                                    Ayra, my grandaughter
                                   just over 3 weeks old



For Nurul first baby

Motherhood, the pain and joy

 Jalil the father





Time for confinement

Mother is around to help

Allah is her strength




It may seem petty

It is the dedication

Our flesh and blood





Motherhood is the true reflection of care and sacrifice that every woman goes through whenever a child is born. The care and support from the Family to sail through the confinement period safely is another vital step for the health and happiness of the mother. Indeed, by the Grace and Mercy of Allah,Nasimah my wife and Nurul's mother is around to lend that much needed care.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Security

                                   Changing the Guards


Standing at the Post

Keeping watch on those coming

In and out of here





He must be alert

To watch for any trouble

Day and Night to Guard




For our Safety

There must be no compromise

On Security




In early August this year we had to engage a new security provider to man our neighborhood security after the previous one ended its contract. Since a few incidents of breach of security took place,we have to be more strict in enforcing the entry and exits of people coming in and out day and night. Like it or not, we have to hire the guards from Nepal who are reliable and effective. Security cannot be taken for granted.



Saturday, September 29, 2012

Free

                                         Joy Adamson and Elsa-Born Free



The story Born Free

About the lioness cub

Whose mother was shot





Once in Africa

Joy Adamson and Elsa

Grew up with fondness





A touching story

For all to see in movie

Return to the wild



September Heights, day 30 - Free.

It was a true story of a lioness cub named Elsa who was brought up by a couple, George and Joy Adamson who lived in Africa. When the lioness grew bigger they decided that Elsa should be released into the wild. The movie received much acclaim from film-goers for the moving theme. It was based on a book by the same title, "Born Free".



Friday, September 28, 2012

Battlefield

                             At Benteng 7 Lapis in 2008



I was in Riau

At Benteng Tujuh Lapis

Visit Battlefield




It was long before

We even knew where it was

Fort Dalu Dalu



He was their Leader

Padri Wars against the Dutch

Tambusai a cry



September Heights, day 29- "Battlefield".

I visited the former fort at Benteng 7 Lapis in Dalu Dalu, about 5 hours from Pekanbaru in Riau, Sumatera. It was there the last battle against the Dutch fought by my ancestor, Fakeh Hj.Muhammad Salleh a.k.a. Tuanku Tambusai in 1838. He escaped by jumping into Batang Sosah, a fast flowing river next to the fort and from there he made his way to Rasah, Seremban where he finally settled and died in 1882.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Waltz

September Heights- Day 28, P#187- Waltz



To the dance lovers

Dancing the Waltz is sheer fun

I love Zapin more



With Grace and  beauty

Reflects the lively culture 

Which resides in me



Zapin is not easy

Just like Waltz, one must practice

The thrill is many




I simply enjoy the Zapin steps and the music that goes with it,especially if the composer is Pak Ngah, who is the arranger of Siti Nurhaliza's traditional Malay numbers.





Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Footprint

Picture by courtesy of World Resources

Walk on the sea-shore

In the crispy morning sun

Footprint in the sand

It was then pristine

Greed has destroyed its beauty

Dirty Port Dickson

Nature has its way

To teach man how to behave

Just wait for the day

September Heights - Day 27, P#186- Footprint

I lived in Port Dickson when my father was transferred there in 1967 for a couple of years and it was then still idyllic and peaceful with its clean beaches. But now Port Dickson is ugly with hotels and apartments lining the beaches where the public has no access as what it was before. Nature's wrath shall teach man a lesson one fine day.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Paper Boats

Picture by Courtesy of Google images

Days of My Childhood

Just love making Paper Boats

Putting in the Stream

As it goes along

Sailing with flow of current

With Pleasure and Joy

Having Simple things

The Innocence of the past

Bygone were the Days

In response to September Heights-Day 26, P#185, "Paper Boats"

Nowadays children are more into gadgets and computerised games unlike our generation when the games we played were made from papers , wood or cans. But it brought immense pleasure nevertheless.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Sleep

Haiku Heights -Day 25, P#184- Sleep.

Taken for granted

Until One is all deprived

Sound Sleep and Slumber

More than once suffered

I just could not reason why

Wide awake like Owl

More Precious than Food

Losing Weight was Terrible

Let it be no more

I experienced twice the in the past of not being able to sleep like I usually do. My doctor prescribed medication to enable me to sleep. But it made me feel terrible after waking up. I pray that such bouts of sleeplessness shall not occur in my whole lifetime because it takes a heavy toll on one's well being.

Paradox

Day 24 of Haiku Heights,"Paradox".

Fifteenth September

Reunion of Old Classmates

Seremban Golf Club

I left in Form Three

The gathering for Form Five

What a Paradox

Seeing the pictures

Reminiscing the faces

Fifty years ago

Please see earlier posting on "Reunion" but I have to give it a miss owing to prior commitment. Perhaps I would keep the date free for the next one, InshaAllah!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Birth

                                                    Ayra bt Abdul Jalil born
                                  on 11 September 2012


In the afternoon

She came into the world

Birth of the baby



Allah's creation

The Sign of His Almighty

His Grace and Blessings


Joy to her parents

The first born to both of them

May Allah Bless Her



This is the continuation of Sept. Heights Day 22- P#181, "Birth".

The birth of Ayra on Sept. 11, 2012 at 2.40 pm, weighing 3.12 kilogram brings joy to my daughter Nurul and Jalil my son-in-law. She is my sixth grandchild and my second grand-daughter.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Glory

Today is day 21, P#180 of Haiku Heights. "Glory".



Merdeka the Call

Shouts were heard on the Padang

That Night of Glory



The Crowd was frenzy

We were proud to see our flag

Rising high slowly



On Selangor Padang

We waited for the moment

Of Independence




I was at my grand-mother's house listening to Radio Malaya where I heard my Uncle's voice giving an emotional commentary on the flag-raising ceremony as the clock struck twelve midnite 31st August 1957. It was a historic moment I shall never forget.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Lights





A Ray of Sunshine

Penetrating the Jungle

Of Million years old


I walk carefully

Through the hills and mountains

Steps treading lightly


The Lights coming through

The Canopy of Tall tress

Giving Life to many


This is in response to prompt of day 20 in Haiku Heights, entitled "Lights".

It was an experience in climbing Gunung Berembun during the Annual Camp in Brinchang which was then pristine, unlike now where there are too many buildings that have spoilt the beauty of nature in the Highlands.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Island

I missed the previous prompt because I have to be at my daughter's place helping her out during her confinement. Now I must not let the momentum falter; here goes:-

                           Island

A little red dot

So said a famous guy once

It is exacting


Once a backwater

Infested by mosquitoes

Now a first-world class


Squeaky clean at most

Well known for its Kiasu

Not my favourite



When I first transit the Changi Airport in September 1972 on my way to London via BOAC, it was the first day of the once single airline operating separately as MAS and SIA. I can still recall the way MAS counter was struggling as an "infant" compared to the "Cocky" long spacious counters of SIA overlording the others. It made me despise the Island since then.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Trip to Derby

In response to Hank's urgings to go for the extra lines in Haiku, I hope not to disappoint him. So here goes;

                       Trip to Derby

Riding in the coach

To visit Derby Castle

Passing the Meadow



I ask Mariah

Did you see the sheep and cows?

Lazying on the grass?


Does it remind you

Of our colleagues back home then

Like being in meadow



I recall this trip in the Spring of 1997 to Derby Castle which once belonged to one of the Lords in the County of Nottinghamshire which has been turned into a tourist's attraction . Mariah, a colleague who was attending the same course in London with me was seated next and I showed her the sheep in the meadow as we passed by not far from the Castle. She laughed when I mentioned the parable.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Grass

                                          Courtesy of Google images.


In accordance with my accomplished friend's wishes (aka Hank) I said I'll try to keep my promise on Haiku.


                                         Grass

In the dry Desert

Clump of Grass is not Mirage

Sign of Almighty



This reminds me of the journey between Mecca to Medina during my Hajj together with Nasimah in 1999. We travelled by coach on the first day of Muharram to Medina from Mecca. It just took about 6 hours, including waiting time for security clearance at the Hajj Check-point. An experience not easily forgotten, passing through the arid Arabian desert and the bare rocky mountains along the highway.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Revelation

Whenever I meet my dear friend Hank, he would always broach the subject of Haiku. He even brought with him the volume on glossary of words to convince me. I actually owe a lot to him on keeping the interest on Haiku for without his instance, it would have died a natural death. Here goes;


                                           Revelation

Mulling in my thoughts

World without Revelation

Would life be the same

Ayra, my second grand-daughter


                                         Top: Family Photo taken before Ayra's birth

                                         Below:  Ayra, born on 11 September 2012


My daughter Nurul Husna delivered  her first child last Tuesday 11 September 2012 at 2.40 p.m.My thanks to Allah Almighty for her bundle of joy together with Abdul Jalil who was with her during labour and the delivery. Both mother and daughter are doing fine and we are fortunate to be able to see them both when they were taken back to their room in the Hospital at around 5.45 p.m. on that day.
  Jalil and Nurul named her Ayra, and when Nurul's cousin asked Jalil what is her full name, he replied, " Ayra Abdul Jalil". It is short and easily remembered, he said. She weighs 3.12 kilogram at birth, and both mother and child were discharged from the Hospital on Wednesday evening, 12 September. All of us  welcome the new addition to the Family and may Allah endow her with His Grace and Blessings, Amin!

Monday, September 10, 2012

The Reunion

                                           King George V School
                    Seremban, Form 5 A, 1962

Last Sunday 09 September, I had a pleasant surprise when I received a call on my mobile phone, from someone whom I have not met since I left my former school, King George V Seremban in 1960, a classmate of mine, S.Thavamani.
She is her usual chirpy and bubbly self, when she told me that she got my number from another classmate now a retired Judge whom I met last year at a Hari Raya invitation from my former office in Putrajaya. Although I was not in the KGV form 5 class  in 1962, as shown in the picture above (taken from the school magazine), but she still extend the Form 5 Reunion to me, since I knew many of the faces which appeared in the photo. After 50 years, some have passed away, but many are still recognisable. Unfortunately I could not attend the reunion owing to prior commitments on this 15 September, when the reunion is to be held in Seremban. It would have been wonderful to see my former classmates after half a century! Of course with the mature and dignified white hairs some may have on top or none at all, we would have a hilarious time recalling the good old days. The organiser for this reunion is none other than the affable Victor Lee Wee Kah, whom I remembered, as he was always smart and carried himself well with his classmates. Those seated in the front row in the photo above are Boon Cheng Ee(deceased) Lee Wee Kah, Malik Yasin, Choong Siew Min,Md.Nor Tan,Muthukumar, Musalmah Asli,Zaiton seated in the first row of form 5A. Those who have passed away are Johari Baharudin, Maarith and Bukhari. The others whom I can still recall are Tee Ting Chai, Lee Chin Hwa, Kulasingham,Jeyasingham,Liew Siew Mun,Madhusudan Patel, Rosli, Mat Saman,Zaini Hassan and many others whose names I have forgotten.I wish Victor Lee Wee Kah's class reunion is a success and may the presence of those who attend bring back happy memories of the comradeship of our former classmates and my respects to the teachers who are able to come.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Farewell to a friend

I received a message on my mobile phone about the passing away of a dear friend this morning and immediately drove to his house in Bukit Damansara. I was quite surprised that traffic was light and I reached the place in a short time. I thank Allah Almighty for the ease of driving which I always dread when driving to the city in the rush hour.
As I made the turn to the address, lorong Setiapuspa 1, Bukit Damansara, the Boom gate was down, but as I approached, the security guard raised the gate and I followed a car which presumably was going to the same place. I saw many cars parked along the sloping road, so I made a u-turn and proceeded to enter the lane to the house. I parked my car about 70 metres from the house and walked slowly right to the end of the row of double storey link-houses and I saw the people sitting on chairs near the entrance. I met another old acquaintance who was serving at the Islamic Development Bank in Jeddah who was busy helping with the funeral preparations and he must be a member of the qariah Masjid since the funeral rites must be arranged with the officials of the Mosque nearby.
As I entered the house, the late friend's brother greeted me and showed me inside. My friend who messaged me was already there together with another friend. We were all once Members of the Public Service Commission and a close knit 'family' as it were.
I sat down next to the "Jenazah" and started reciting the Surah Yasin and as I was doing so, a close relative of the late friend came and he opened the shawl covering the face of the "Jenazah" and I could see the expression of serenity on my late friend's face. He must have been prepared to face the inevitable of being called to face his Creator because he had been in frail health after his open heart surgery and he had to undergo dialysis almost every day.
I mentioned to my friend, that the most poignant moment that I recalled of him was when we were performing the Hajj in Makkah in the 80's where I went to his place of lodging and he gave me a plastic plate when I complained of the difficulty of finding one at my lodging place. Allahyarham Dato' Mohsin Khir would always be remembered by his colleagues as the fearless "Commissioner" as he liked to call himself then and always spoke his mind. We shared the same spirit and insisted that we must always remained independent as provided for by the Federal Constitution and serve without fear or favour. During the monday weekly meetings only a few of us spoke our minds and always reminded the Chairman of our role as the gatekeepers to the public service and we should not be subservient to no one. Farewell my dear friend and May Allah place your soul amongst the pious and Al-Fatihah.

Friday, July 20, 2012

The First Day of Ramadhan

It is not just another normal day in the Muslim calendar, but the month of Ramadhan is the most blessed of all, where the Prophet's hadith points out that the gates to Heaven are all opened and the gates of Hell are closed and the Satan are all chained.
When I was a small kid, the "Puasa" month is the most exciting because the breaking of the fast is accompanied by "air batu bandung" and other sweet delicacies which one sees rarely during the other months.
But now with the abundance of "Pasar Ramadhan" the excitement is of a different type, i.e. the dilemma of having so many choice of food for the breaking of fast but at a price. With the prices of food having multiplied many times as compared to then, the fun of home cooked delicacies is very much reduced. In those good old days, we exchange delicacies with neighbours and that was how goodwill and the spirit of Ramadhan was fostered.
I met a Cikgu at my usual car wash centre in Kelana Jaya and it was quite interesting as what he observed about the concept of fasting and Ramadhan, which I would like to share with readers here. He said we should  welcome the blessed month much more than Hari Raya which is just for one day as compared to Ramadhan which is for one whole month. The significance of the Ramadhan should be a much awaited event because the rewards of doing good is multiplied by many times over when compared to other months. He said it during the month of Ramadhan that we should be wearing the best clothes going to the mosques to perform the Terawih prayers instead of the Hari Raya day. Another observation which he made not specifically in Ramadhan only is the practice of begging for alms. If the Zakat authorities is doing their job, he said there should be no beggars especially in the blessed month when the unfortunates  should be well taken care of.
He pointed out the need to change the concept of welcoming Ramadhan as compared to the month of Syawal. I just listened without much comment as I do not want to jeorpadise my fasting. But I think there is some truth in his observations. We have somewhat gone off tangent with the times and hope the new generation will be back on the right track with regard to how to perform their obligations in keeping with the practice of Islam and not being side-tracked by other influences.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Ushering the Blessed Month

The month of Ramadhan will be coming in about a fortnight's time and as usual most of the mosques will be initially full of muslims who are doing their "Terawih" prayers but towards the end, the numbers will slowly get less and less.
Last night was the "Malam Nisfu Sya'ban" which means the night of the half of the month of Sya'ban in the Muslim calendar. It is normally welcomed by many believers in the Nusantara region by performing the reading of the Surah Yaasin and other prayers because Allah Almighty grants the wishes of those who pray during this particular night. Although some regard this practice as "Bidaah" or an addition, but it has been practised by those who are pious and religious in many parts of the Islamic world. What is important such a practice is not against the Shari'ah.
Many believers take the opportunity of fasting on the 15 of Sya'ban which falls on 05 July which is a Thursday. In fact the holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) performed the non-obligatory fasting mainly in this month as the preparation for the holy month of Ramadhan. As believers we should prepare ourselves for the coming of this most Blessed month in the Muslim calendar by doing what was practised by Allah's messenger.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Neighbourhood Security

For the past several days there have been a spate of incidents in my neighbourhood that raised the concerns of many about the efficacy of our security guards.
My neighbour whose house is directly opposite mine was broken into at 8.15 pm and the son who was at home was tied and forced to open the safe and the contents were looted. Only the maids and his grandmother were at home while the parents and his wife were not at home.
The resident's association of my neighbourhood had put a security system to prevent untoward incidents such as snatch thefts and house breaking since September 2010 after several incidents of snatch thefts and house breaking were reported.
We had a change of the security service provider when it was found that some guards were under performing as it is difficult to get good ones at the rate we are paying. High performing security providers normally do not cater residential areas and the cost would have been beyond our means. Nevertheless, the security situation have improved since the system have been installed.
The problem has always been to find a balance of implementing a system that entails the closure of the many entrances and exits and the ease of traffic flow since we have a school in the neighbourhood. And not all are paying the monthly fees.
Now since the recent increase in security lapses we are going to implement a system that restricts entry and exit only through one gate and the rest will be closed. It is going to cause inconveniences to visitors and residents, but it is a small price to pay to ensure security.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Muar, the pensioner's town

                                            Muar Town in the Foreground


On the friday of 20 April 2012, I drove to Muar, leaving my house at 3.00 pm in the midst of the falling rain, hoping to reach the town before the Asar prayer time ends. Luckily the rain stopped by the time I reach the Nilai interchange on the North-South highway and I stopped for a short break at the Pedas-Linggi lay-by. I was hoping to meet up with my sister who was in another car which left Ampang Indah at around 3.30 pm somewhere along the rest area before the Tangkak exit, but since she was late due to the heavy rain, I took off straight to Muar trying to locate the hotel where we would be staying.
               Nasimah and Haniff were with me in the car as we cruise down the highway to Muar because we were to attend the wedding reception of my niece at Parit Punggur the next day 21 April 2012. Since I have not been to Muar since my last visit in 1999, I was not too sure whether I can find my way to the hotel. Fortunately a kind soul whom I met when I stopped at a Petrol station to ask for directions to the hotel willingly showed me the way and I followed him as he guided me on his motor-cycle. He refused to take a tip which I gave him and I am glad that the good old values still remain in this town which is dubbed by some as the Pensioner's town. By and large, Muar is quite a busy town and there still many old buildings apart from the new shopping complexes that defied its reputation.
  By 6.30 pm, my sister and all the others arrived at the hotel and we were glad that a last minute change of hotels was a right decision because the hotel is quite new as compared to the one booked earlier. The hotel where we stayed is right in the town centre on Jalan Ali. At night all of us went for dinner at a restaurant in Tanjong Emas, by the Muar river. The next day started with a morning rain and it stopped by about 10.00 am. It was a good thing as it cooled the otherwise hot weather. It was my first time attending a wedding in Muar and we spent an enjoyable day before departing at 3.30 pm heading for Seremban where I spent the night at my other sister's house in Taman Seri Telawi in Paroi.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

White


Swans on the Lough in Cork last Summer.


White pure and simple




Graceful and serene on lake




Floating and pretty





The sight of the graceful swans on the Lough in Cork was a soothing and balming experience. The people treasure such natural sorroundings and a thing of beauty is a joy forever. Alhamdulillah.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Wonder Star

                                           A Starry sky at night
                                           ( Image from google pictures)


On a starry night



I look up high in wonder



Of Allah's Greatness



I recall  the nursery rhyme "Twinkle Twinkle little star" and  wondered what "you" are. Then I could not relate that it is one of the wonders that Allah create as part of the Universe for the benefit of Mankind.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Being

                                                    
                                             Muhammad Zariff Shah b.Husni Ariff Shah      


Being creation



A gift of God Almighty



A Divine Blessing




Muhammad Zariff Shah was born 08 January 2012 at 4.59 p.m.  and with the Blessings of Allah S.W.T. he is now healthy and well although he had to be warded in the early stages for sometime owing to his g6pd condition, where there is a defiency of a certain enzyme in the blood. 



Saturday, April 14, 2012

Alive and Healthy

Life goes on daily



To Allah I owe everything


Alive and healthy




Every morning when I wake up I am reminded that my life is in Allah's hand and it is only a trust to me to take care of it. Never take it for granted.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Nostalgia in Benteng 7 Lapis

                                         Ceremony at Benteng 7 Lapis


The ceremony


One has to be coherent


To be remembered



The handing over of Tuanku Tambusai's potrait by Ibu Yurikawati from the Rokan Hulu office for Culture and Tourism during my visit to Dalu Dalu in 2008. It was a nostalgic welcome by our hosts to our group comprising of descendants of Tuanku Tambusai. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Strength of Prayer

                                                  Invocation after prayer.



After a prayer


Recite an invocation


All is possible


As a Believer, a supplication to Allah Almighty after every daily prayer strengthens the Faith to face every trial and tribulation in life.

Monday, April 09, 2012

Summer of '79

                                             The Old Main in June


State College in Summer


Ramadhan a long fast


Only faith will last



My family was with me in State College when I was at Penn State. A very dear friend, Mr. Summers shall be in our fond memory forever.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Seashore

                                           The Titanic was here 100 years ago
                                                  


On a moonlit night


Standing alone on seashore


Yearning of bygone days

Friday, March 09, 2012

SBPA - The Emperor's New Clothes

                                          The Jubilant news of SBPA's being scrapped


The bombshell news that was announced at the grand PICC in Putrajaya by the PM on the abolishment of the new remuneration scheme which came into being on 01 January 2012 was welcomed by many in the Public service as shown above. After all the hard work put in by the team in PSD for the past two years,everything went down the drain. It was not their fault, but it is a reflection of the quality of leadership at the top which is in question.
Under normal circumstances, any new scheme which was to be implemented should have been thrashed with all the stakeholders,especially the public service unions,especially the umbrella body, CUEPACS. However, this time around it was CUEPACS who objected the loudest and it seemed that they were not well informed of the implications.
Going by past practice, the nitty gritty would have been solved at the various rounds of meetings with the unions and only after making sure of their support, would the scheme be put before the Cabinet Committee for endorsement.
Most probably owing to circumstances beyond the control of PSD, there was no time to point out that the Emperor had no clothes. Thus it ended in a tragedy for the poor top leadership in the Civil Service. But never mind, at least a lesson has been well learned, that in future there must be someone who should shout that the Emperor had no clothes.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Mohd. Suhaimi My Cousin

                                           Mohd.Suhaimi(extreme right)


In one of my earlier postings more than a year ago, I mentioned about my cousin Suhaimi whom I had lost contact for several years since I last met him in person in 2005. Last December he went to meet my cousin Rohani who was then visiting her son who worked in London, after meeting Azizi her husband at the Malaysia Hall a couple of time.
I was informed by Azizi that after one Friday prayer, he was having lunch at the cafeteria in Malaysia Hall and he saw Suhaimi sitting at the opposite table. He approached him and introduced himself and then had a long chat with him. Fortunately Suhaimi could recognise him immediately when he mentioned his name, even though they seldom see each other and the last time he met him was in the seventies.
Prior to Azizi and Rohani's flight to London, I asked them to look out for Suhaimi and the best place was Malaysia Hall where he normally goes for Friday prayers.
Suhaimi spend several hours at Azril's place near London where Rohani and Azizi was putting up and it was a long update of relatives who had passed away and those cousins and nephews and nieces who got married. The good news that I got from the meeting was that Suhaimi is well and he is making an effort to sort out his personal matters before he could decide to come home or not.
After a long absence and silence, I managed to get his reply from my email enquiring about his situation. After getting some information with regard to his EPF and other matters, I advised him to engage a law firm to clear up the problems because as long as they are not settled, his passport cannot be renewed. His most recent email to me seemed to indicate that his efforts in contacting the parties involved in clearing up his problem with met with little success. However I have given him a contact number of a lawyer who is a nephew of a neighbour so that he could pursue the matter in a more orderly manner. I hope he could shed some light at the end of the tunnel and with perseverance Suhaimi should be able to renew his passport to enable him to come home after a very long absence of about 15 years.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Hang Tuah, and his detractors

                                                Hang Tuah's mural in Muzium Negara

I knew about the story of Hang Tuah when I began to read Utusan Kanak Kanak, the children's paper which was circulated by Utusan Melayu during my early schooling years. Then a play on Hang Tuah was put up at the Lake Gardens in Seremban where my late uncle Hashim Amir Hamzah who was actively involved in its production, and I presumed that made Mubin Sheppard who was then the British Adviser in Negri Sembilan gave him a good recommendation for a job as a radio announcer in the then Radio Malaya at Singapore.
So I just cannot understand the fuss over Khoo Kay Kim's notion that Hang Tuah did not exist. Of what importance did he now bring up the subject-matter is a mystery to many. Just because he is the chairman of the committee which reviews the history syllabus for our schools does not confer on him the right to disturb the authenticity of his contributions to his ruler, Sultan Mansur Shah. He could well be just a myth, but to the Malays he is more than that. Hang Tuah is part of the Malay cultural heritage as pointed out by my ex-residential college mate in University Malaya, Prof. Ghouse Nasaruddin.
If Mubin Sheppard had his way, he probably wanted Hang Tuah's bust be put up in front of Muzium Negara and not just his mural, when he was heading  the museum. He would be turning in his grave if he reads on the statements now made by Hang Tuah's detractors   including  those who said that Hang Tuah was a Chinese.
This is what happens when we are not proud of our past. After all not everything of importance need to be proven by empirical evidence and facts, because for all we know if we were to dig for them, they are buried deep under the Straits of Malacca, one of the busiest sea-lanes in the world. That is perhaps the reason why our treasure hunters have quietly carted away many of the artifacts found off our shores because they could well disguised their ships as a passing vessel. It is better for us to keep the legend as it is, because it is already a museum piece.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Muhammad Zarrif Shah, a new addition to the family.

                                                        Muhammad Zarrif Shah

 

Last Sunday 08 January 2012 at 4.59 p.m. saw the arrival of Muhammad Zarrif Shah, my fifth grandchild and the third child from my son Husni and daughter-in-law Chik Laynnia Zamir. Alhamdulillah both of them, the baby and mother are already discharged from SJMC in Subang. But since the doctor recommended a longer light therapy for the baby's jaundice, he is admitted closer to their home at Tropicana Medical Centre in Kota Damansara.
As a grandfather, I am quite relieved to welcome the new addition to the family after a few false alarms where the doctor told Laynnia that if the baby is not born by Thursday 12 January, then he has to induce the birth, but Alhamdulillah he arrives earlier.
I am grateful to ALLAH S.W.T. for fulfilling my prayer that both of them are well. Now it is the time for us to lend a hand in helping out whenever required since they do not have a helper at home.