A poem written especially for Uncle Osman, Aunty Yaman and Sister Arwa from Khartoum, Sudan…
What should I make?
Should I draw or paint?
Make a glittering card?
Oh, but that’s hard.
A watercolour painting!
Of the seaside in the evening!
It would remind Sister Arwa
Of her visit to Malaysia.
But I don’t paint that well,
Oh, the flowers from the hotel!
For Aunty Yaman!
Yes, that would be fun.
No, flowers I cannot draw,
Especially those that we saw,
The ideas came and away they leave,
I still can’t think of what to give.
After an hour of nothing but waiting,
I finally have thought of something
I guess it’s the best I could come out with,
This piece of poem shall be my gift.
On the 11th October 2009, we had a wonderful picnic with dad’s old friends from his university days at the Southern Illinois University, Carbondale (click here to see their blog).Their special guest was Uncle Osman from Khartoum, Sudan who was on a two weeks trip to Malaysia with his wife, Aunty Yaman and daughter, Sister Arwa. The picnic was held at the Taman Tasik Ampang Hilir, a beautiful lake park which was newly opened to the public two months ago.
We arrived there at 8:00 a.m. It was still early so mum allowed my siblings and I to run to the nearby playground. I spent a long time on the swing (which I love best). I made a huge improvement on the ‘monkey-bars’. Now I could amazingly swing to the fourth bar without falling down the moment I reached out to grab the second bar. I also had a nice chat with Sister Arwa.
After an hour or two at the playground, mum sent Uncle Moslim’s daughter, Hadibah, to inform me that it is time to eat. And through that quick conversation, I knew I had made a new friend. After calling for my brother and sisters, we raced back to the picnic area. Over there I saw Pak Cik Borhan, Uncle Megat, Uncle Moslim, Uncle Raof, Uncle Fauzan and some of those whose names I don’t know. I also met Arif again (refer to ‘Going To Melaka’) who introduced me to his sister Hafsah.
The food was great. Mum cooked (what she called) ‘Italian Styled Pasta’ and Uncle Borhan brought ‘Nasi Lemak’ bought from ‘On The Run’ (which happens to be my favourite). There were also some Malaysian special layered cakes but after a heap plate of pasta and a pack of ‘Nasi Lemak’, I was just too full to eat anything else.
After we were done, I quietly rushed back to the playground to play with my new friends; Uncle Moslims kids, Hadibah (14), Aliah (12) and Ibrahim and Uncle Fauzan’s kids, Arif (9) and Sakinah (5). You couldn’t imagine how packed the small playground was with 10 of us plus a lot more of other kids.
Then, our parents called us back and we snapped photos as a remembrance of our lovely gathering. We all had a great time and I hope that we could meet again some other time.
Today, I met Uncle Awang Goneng at the Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM). Awang Goneng (a.k.a. Wan A. Hulaimi) grew up in Terengganu but later on moved to London, a place so far away from his homeland. His beautiful book ‘Growing Up In Trengganu’ (originated from his blog –http://kecek-kecek.blogspot.com) was written to share with everyone about the life in Terengganu in the 60’s.
I attended ‘The Writing Mind’ workshop where Uncle Awang Goneng taught us some tips on writing. One of them which sticks in my mind was to increase your vocabulary skills – or in other words, never be afraid of using a dictionary. It reminds me of Prof. Muhammad Al-Mahdi’s ‘favourite assignment’. He would tell my classmates and I to make a list of 20 hard words and remember all 60 words, it’s spelling and definitions. To make sure we memorised each of them, we shall have to take a test at the end of the week.
Uncle Awang Goneng also taught us to read aloud what we have written after finishing a piece of work. It helps us to correct unnoticeable small mistakes. This was also taught by Prof. Muhammad and since then, I made a huge improvement in my writing class.
But Uncle Awang Goneng was really sad to hear about the unacceptable act of the government to demolish a more than a century old shophouses row in our hometown, Kuala Terengganu. Such historic building should be kept and preserved such as those in
Penang and Malacca. But we were even shocked to know that Uncle Awang Goneng’s house in Terengganu was going to be demolished
too. I guess one day, Terengganu would be the only state in Malaysia to lose all of it’s history and heritage clue to the cruel act of the state government.
Before leaving, I took the opportunity to ask Awang Goneng to autograph in my diary. Thank you Uncle Awang Goneng (Uncle Wan).
Now is the mid-year school holidays in Malaysia and it means a ‘wedding season’ for us – Malaysians in Malaysia. We received wedding invitations here and there from both relatives and friends; sometimes we attended a few wedding receptions in a day!
Today we attended two wedding celebrations, first in Keramat and after that at the Dewan Merak Kayangan in Jalan Semarak. And after sending us home, dad attended another wedding reception close to our house.
We arrived at Uncle Anuar Ibrahim’s house at about 12 o’ clock. Uncle Anuar and his wife, Aunty Salamah are close friends of my parents. In fact Uncle Anuar’s father and my mum’s father are close friends too!
As usual, everything is always beautiful at Uncle Anuar’s and Aunty Sal’s party. And the food are always good too. Aunty Sal is a great cook and she bakes the nicest cookies and cakes. And for today’s wedding reception, she baked delicious cupcakes and decorated them with beautiful pink butter cream roses. They are just so beautiful that I wish to take each of them. My little brother Ahmad Ali ate lots of them!
*Note: Please click on the photos
Dad met lots of his old schoolmate at the reception. One of them is Uncle Apo or Uncle Abdul Ghaffar Mohd Nor who has been reading my blog… Thank you for visiting my blog, Uncle Apo. Please drop a line or two in my blog if Uncle Apo can find a free time; its is always nice to receive comments… something like receiving a letter. 😀
Anyway I’m sad to hear that Uncle Anuar’s father is not in good health. Insya Allah we’ll be visiting him together with my grandmother in Kuala Terengganu this weekend. And before we left, Uncle Anuar’s sister in-law took us to Kak Norjie’s room. Kak Norjie, the beautiful and charming bride was dressed in red and she looked so marvellous in her wedding attire…
Last Sunday, Alam Akademik Sdn. Bhd. (my grandmother’s bookstore which is also known as Keda Pok Loh Yunang) organized a program at Sekolah Kebangsaan Padang Hiliran in Kuala Terengganu. The program started at 9 a.m. and ended at 11.20 a.m. It was held at the school hall. The program was attended by students from Year 3,4,5 and 6.
We hope to share our experiences in Public Speaking with all of our friends at Sekolah Kebangsaan Padang Hiliran. We had a real good time at the school. The students are really brave and smart. They came forward to read and answer questions. I’m so proud of them. We hope our friends in Sekolah Kebangsaan Padang Hiliran will enjoy learning English for we need to learn other languages to be smart and knowledgeable.
I did a book reading and spoke about ‘The Creation Of Universe’ based on the book by the same tittle written by Prof Muhammad Al-Mahdi. I read a chapter of Growing Up In Terengganu by Awang Goneng titled ‘Budu Spell’ which is very interesting and funny at the same time. My little sister Aeshah did what she does best… STORYTELLING!!! And Anisah sang a butterfly song. My little blogging brother Ahmad Ali, read a post from his famous blog entitled ‘Swine Flu’.
We ended the program by singing the Khalifah Song and Guantanamera. Guantanamera is the most popular song in Cuba and is an unofficial national anthem of Cuba. This Spanish Song is so beautiful and I can never be tired of hearing it.
I really had a good time too. I hope we can inspire them to learn English and other languages and be good oriaters… I wish to thank the headmaster and the teachers for inviting us to the school and for the token given to us by the school. I would also like to thank Syaza and all those from SK Padang Hiliran who had been reading my blog.