Friends at Fraser’s Hill

Last year we were so busy travelling – we managed 6 Β trips altogether. On top of that, we also had a wedding of our eldest child, Nuni and an engagement of our 3rd child. We also tried as much as we could, to visit my parents-in-law in Kelantan, now that FIL is not mobile πŸ™ .

One of the consequences to this life style change was very much less visits to Fraser’s Hill. Our last trip there last year was in October 2013. We wanted to go there in December, but during the only available time, DH was down with shingles πŸ™ .


So this year, again we hope to be able to spend more time at the hill. We were lucky that for the last 2 weekends we managed to do so. Not only we spent our weekends there, but we also had visitors with us πŸ™‚ .


Two weeks ago, Sseme and family came to join us for a night.


While taking them for a tour round this tiny place, I spotted a new attraction, and had it immortalised with this pic πŸ™‚ :


Here’s a pic of us having a breather at a nearby cafe


The next day we came down from the hill together because we were going to attend a wedding do at our friend’s place. On the way down, it was so misty, we decided to come down for some photo shoot πŸ™‚ .


and a selfie:


We also stopped at a bridge;


But hey!! There’s a car coming!! So we dashed away!! (in the mean time, the cameraman, Faim, kept on clicking the shutter, hahahaha!!!)


Here’s a photo of us taken at the gigantic signage, on our way down:


Then last week Ana came with her daughter and son. Here’s a photo of both of us taken in front of “Ye Olde Smokehouse” πŸ™‚


So, those were 2 wonderful, or rather “peaceful and quiet” weekends for us πŸ™‚

Last, but not least, thanks to these friends who kept us accompanied for the duration. We hope you enjoyed the tranquility as mush as us and will come back in the future πŸ˜‰



Meeting My Teacher Again :)

(I am trying to be active again in blogging πŸ™‚ )


Yesterday, 20 august 2013, I got a visit from a very special teacher, Cikgu Ashaari. Β Please read the the link to know how special he is to me πŸ™‚ .


I have been meeting him quite regularly, but any meet with him is always special. Yesterday meet was extra special because he came with (apart from his wife) his son, Azam.

hardly 2 weeks ago DH and I visited him at his house in Kota Bharu. Here’s a photo taken then:


And yesterday we had this one taken πŸ™‚ :


Cikgu seated with his missus.

Standing from left: Azam’s daughter, missus, Fadhil, Azam’s BIL, Azam’s daughter, Azam, Nury (my friend since ssecondary school), me and DH.





Aidil Fitri 1435H

We celebrated the end of the fasting month last week, on Thursday 8 August.


Compared to our same celebration last year, this time round it was a much more toned down occasion.


Initially we didn’t plan to celebrate much, since our no.4 kid is in USA and no.5 kid in France, both studying…


Two days before the big day, I (for the first time) went to SP Setia Welcome Centre, to collect some of the Raya packets (we put money inside, to be given as gifts to relatives/kids) that the developer is distributing for free:


We however figured out that the traffic of “Balik Kampung” (going back to our home towns) would be well spread out, so we decided to go back to our home town, Kota Bharu, which is over 400km away.


We left for Kota Bharu at 10.30pm on the even of the big day, and arrived at MIL/FIL’s home 7 hours later (that’s the typical time taken on a normal day. We certainly managed to avoid the jam because by the time we left for KB, the bulk of the “Balik Kampung” people had already reached their destinations.

It was a simple celebration. We managed to have a rare extended family photo taken:


DH and I stayed home most of the time (sleepy for sure), playing hosts to relatives and friends who came visiting. It was only on the 3rd day that we decided to visit DH’s friend. After the greetings and hugging, I managed to snap this picture of both of them:


Later that night, on our way to my alma-mater’s gathering, we stopped at another of DH’s friend’s house. A rare photo was also snapped that night:


Oops, did I forget to tell you that Sadki (in the picture above), was also my senior during my secondary school days (he was DH’s primary school buddy).


Here’s the gathering in the school hall (we were still waiting for more to turn up):


I was rather in a hurry, but here’s one of the pic of me, taken by another friend/senior (Shukri Hamidi):


I left the function early because I promised Azam to visit him at his parents’ house. Azam lives in UK and is home for a short holiday. His father was my teacher. I wrote about him/cikgu (teacher) here.


Here’s a picture of (from right) Azam, DH, Cikgu, and me.


We arrived at cikgu’s house at 10.15pm, and stayed there for over a hour, before we rushed home (FIL & MIL’s place).

That night we left for Kuala Lumpur at 12.30am, and arrived home 7 hours later (we certainly managed to avoid the traffic jam/rush that day πŸ™‚ )





Some Updates…

I have been slow in my blogging lately. The strange thing is that, I am no longer working anywhere!!!


Let’s have some recap of the most important events that I didn’t get to blog about:

Nafis’s departure to Philadelphia

Nafis left in the first week of January 2013. This is a picture of the family dinner just before that:


Nuni’s Nikah and Reception

We had the nikah on 16th March 2013 (a small do). Even though we wanted 13/3/13, the imam was not available for that date πŸ™


The reception was done at Muzium Negeri on 13/4/13.



My Allah bless this wedding…


Nukman’s “Pre-France” Graduation, and departure to Nice, France

It was 22 April 2013. Here’s a photo of me with him wearing the gown:


and here’s a photo with the Dean of MFI, UniKL, who happens to be a long time friend πŸ™‚


That night (yes, on the same day! Rational: Easy for families from outside Klang Valley, they only come once for the graduation and departure πŸ™‚ ), we sent Nukman off.


Here’s a pic of my children, minus Nafis (who’s in Philly):

The order is from righh to left, with the vacant space reserved for Nafis (no.4), represented by the green bag πŸ™‚






Another Buddy Passed Away :-(

This morning I got a call from a close friend informing me of the passing of our good friend, Ab Aziz Ab Rahman. Apparently he had a heart attack and didn’t survive.

The late Aziz was my classmate for 5 years, i.e. since I came back to Kelantan and joined a primary school there, until I left for a different secondary school.

I always remember him as a pleasant person, well-mannered, and always smiling. He was like a sidekick to the late Yusoff Ismail. I didn’t know much about him, except that he hailed from Bukit Panau, and he took the public bus to school. Together with a few others, we had great memories together during those 5 years!

I later met him during a reunion in 2001, andΒ  another reunion a few years late.

Here’s a picture of me with the late Aziz standing (from the Raya 2002 album):


Amnd here’s a picture of him (in red) during a Raya gathering in 2004:

This is his profile picture on Facebook:


What can I say about him?

Over four decades we grew apart, but he is always special in my heart! May Allah bless his soul!




The Half Century Mark!

Yesterday was my birthday, at least officially. And officially I am now half century old. I am grateful with the life that is given to me. I am blessed with a great family, relatives and friends. There are just too many of them that those few who tried to make me feel miserable are negligible to me πŸ™‚

The kids gave DH and I a bean bag each:

(I bet you can guess which one is mine!)

Here’s what I did yesterday:

1. Woke up at 4.30am for the early meal (I was going to fast).

2. Did my morning prayers, did some ironing, cleaned the house (or rather the family and dining area).

3. Sent Aina to her friend’s house in Section 24, Shah Alam

4. Went to the wet market

5. Since I had some time to spare before I was to pick Aina, I decided to visit the famous Jakel (Textile Shop). I will write more about this πŸ™‚

6. Fetched Aina and 3 friends, took them home

7. Sent Aina and friends to Setia City Mall

8. Did some early cooking and prep tasks for today’s lunch meet with some friends

9. Fetched Aina and friends.


I was so exhausted in the late afternoon (I had been up since 4.30am!) that I unintentionally took a long nap – woke up just in time for the breaking of fast. I was too tired to sent Mae back to college, but I did manage to prepare some quick dishes for dinner.


That was about it πŸ™‚ . Four friends remembered to wish me happy birthday via sms/FB. Two of them are very close to my heart and I was not so surprised to receive the wishes, but the other 2 came from 2 young former colleagues, whom I didn’t expect to remember my birthday!!


Now, back to Jakel, yesterday was my second visit to the place. The first was during the chaotic, recently concludedΒ  fasting month when it was just too difficult to move around. I went there with DH to get some curtain fabric, and we did just that!

However, yesterday, despite me wanting to only buy some fabric for my head scarves, I ended up buying some dress fabrics too! The temptation was too great to miss. Maybe I was in a good mood because I managed to get the parking spot right in front of the main entrance!


I can’t remember when was the last time I bought dress fabrics! The last time I bought new “baju kurung” was for Eid Mubarak LAST YEAR!I hope I will not buy anymore for at least another year… I just do not feel the need to, anyway πŸ™‚








The Birthday…

Eight days ago was my birthday. It was almost eventless, except for the birthday wishes from family members especially Aina who wished me during sahur time πŸ™‚ . I also received birthday sms-es from my very close associates too πŸ™‚ . They helped cheer up my birthday, for sure πŸ™‚ . After over 30 years, these people still remember my birthday, and that surely touched my heart..


It was about noon that I remembered my birthday exchange gift that I collected from Rose (who’s my birthday partner for this year exchange) a few days earlier! For the exchange, we are supposed to give our partner a hand-made gift, plus 2 stash items.


Rose however went further than that! Let’s see what she got me in this bag:


There were TWO packages inside the bag:


The contents:


Another look:



Finally, what’s inside the wrapped white paper:


Rose is always good with cross-stitch, and I just love the framed picture above. I was told that the ladle (and the rest above, minus the ribbons of course) are to go with the country home theme of the picture πŸ™‚ .

Finally, the birthday card:


No, I am not going to share the content of the card πŸ™‚ .


Thank you, Rose for the lovely gifts!!!



Congratulations, Nukman!

The SPM results came out yesterday, and again I was a very proud mum, smiling from ear to ear because another child did me proud again! πŸ™‚

Nukman, no.5 in the family of 6 kids, and the youngest son, started like this:

Then this:

We felt that his head was too big for him, but then, the Chinese believe that big head means good fortune (?) πŸ™‚ .

He was and still is a bubbly person:

with a calming facial expression too:

He did well in primary school, and never let us down. He was the headboy of his school (though I could not locate any of the pix) and every year I would attend the price-giving ceremony to see him go up the stage to accept his prizes.

Before we knew it he was about to enter the secondary school. By then he was chubbier. Here’s a pic of him at his chubbiest, at his favourite place (Old Trafford) in Nov 2005:

He lost most of his baby fat when he went to a boarding school. Here’s him in 2007:

He’s gone places since then. Here at Gunung Merapi with his 2 other siblings:

We even went close to the Myanmar border (In Mae Sai, Thailand):

Tanah Lot, Bali:

in Seoul last Dec:

And recently to Anak Kratau (Indonesia):

Two years ago he gave me this:

And yesterday he gave me the best so far:

Though I miss the chubby face of the happy go-lucky toddler, I do want him to move ahead and proceed with his life. Like any mother, I am wishing him the best in his future undertakings!

Love Never Ends – Air Supply

Last Monday (15th Nov 2010), I attended the latest Air Supply concert at Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre. It was aptly entitled “Love Never Ends”.

Both DH and I got the VIP tickets at RM304.50 each!

The seats were on the 10th row from the front and I got an aisle seat! The tickets were birthday gifts from our kids, Nuni & Nubli (the two who are now working πŸ™‚ ).

When we left home at 5.50pm, it was raining heavily. We arrived at KLCC one hour later. We went to redeem our tickets before going for our maghrib prayers. We had a simple dinner there too, after which we adjourned to the concert hall.

It was still pretty empty:

The stage then:

My friend Shima was also there with her hubby:

(pic taken using my N79 phone)

The organiser did allow still photography but video-recording was strictly prohibited.

The opening act which we didn’t miss:

The REAL show started with Russell Hitchcock singing solo:

His voice sounded as good as in their audio CD! I tried my best to remember the songs that they sang and in which order, but I was really hopeless!!

Graham Russell played the guitar like he used to, jumping around with full stamina.

and singing too!


With 135 concerts per year globally, I am sure they remember the lyrics (even the lengthy “Making Love Out of Nothing At All”!) very well!

DH took over 300 shots! Here are some of them:

Somewhere in the middle of the show, while Graham Russell was singing, I saw Russell H coming down from the stage on the right. He shook hands with some of the audienceΒ  in front. I was thinking to myself, oh no! I was not close enough to him.

Before I knew it, he dashed to the back! He continued to sing too, while shaking hands with some of the audience at the back. I think he took DH by surprise, that’s why he (DH) didn’t get many shot then. Here’s one of them:

While we were focused on Russell H, Graham R actually did the same thing from the other side of the auditorium:

Their performance was very entertaining:

At one time, Russell invited the audience to come forward to dance while they sang. Intially nobody went to the front, but soon there were many followers:

Many of them actually wanted to take close-up shots of the duo:

Many BBs too:

Soon the people on duty asked them to go back to their seats, which they did reluctantly.

Many times we were singing along or clapping hands while they sang. During the excitement, DH managed to snap this photo of me:

The duo started their show at 8.40pm, and they finished at 10.20pm. To most of us, the concert was a tad too short πŸ™ . We noticed some songs, such as “Two less Lonely People In The world” were missing… πŸ™

Ah, well, it was still entertaining, to say the least!

My verdict: it was very entertaining to me, and I was happy I got to sing along with them, hehehehe….. πŸ™‚

Thank you again, my kids!!

And, yes, LOVE NEVER ENDS!!!

A Bit of My Past..

This is not going to be a happy post and it’s photo-less too. Not that I am unhappy. In fact I am now very happy and contented. True, I was lonely a couple of nights ago but that was temporary.

I have been wanting to write this a long time ago, but I was afraid that I might hurt certain people’s feelings. On the other hand, I am close to 50 yrs old, I might not live long enough to have the opportunity to tell this to you (whoever is reading my blog). Today after reading a sad status of someone that I care on Facebook, I am moved to write a bit about myself, or rather about my past. I hope by doing so, I would be able to motivate that person to strive on and be strong to face life.

I used to tell my students about my past. My past is never meant to be a secret.It normally started when I tried to advise my students, and I got responses that are something like this: “It’s easy for you maam, because your life is good!” How wrong they were. And that would be the catalyst to a long history lesson for them πŸ™‚ .

I was adopted, as I once blogged here, but I didn’t know I was adopted, until I was about to get married. The only parents I knew worked hard to make ends meet, but they never made me realise that I came from a poor family!Β  They provided well for me. I never knew that a bus driver earned so much less than many other people. I remember how I used to stand up in class, loudly and proudly tell the class that my father was a bus driver,Β  each time we had to tell about ourselves and our families.

The only mother I knew (though not my biological mother) passed away in Mecca when I was in Form 1 (I was 13 years old), and my father passed away 2 months before my MCE (equivalent to “O-level”) examinations.Β  I just turned 17.

My parents had children from previous marriages, but between them they only had me. I have 2 brothers from my mum’s previous marriage. One was not so poor but was hardly nice to me (that’s the reason I do not go back to my home town) while the other was very nice but poor. I always had the impression that the former never liked me. When I became the state best student for LCE (equivalent to PMR) I received a lot of congratulatory wishes from friends and neighbours alike. But what did that brother say to me? I still rememberΒ  the cynical remark very well: “Pah mu raso mu biso lah?” (So you think you are so great then?). A neighbour said to me, if my mum was still alive, there would be a big feast from her to celebrate my success…

When I was at the final stage of getting the scholarship to study in Australia (well before I sat for my MCE), the same brother’s remark was (translated) “so you think you are so good to get the scholarship?). I remember he was reluctant to pay for my MCE examinations fees. I was lucky because I was one of the 4 Petronas scholars (for upper secondary school), and Petronas really took good care of us including paying for our examination fees!

His negative attitude towards me continued well into my marriage. By then I was indifferent towards him. I did help pay for some of his kids education but I did so because I kept on telling myself that they are my late mum’s grandchildren.

Apart from losing my mum when i was only 13, I also had 2 step-mums! The first one lasted for less than 2 years, but the second one lasted until my father’s demise. During the last few months of my father’s life, he was quite poor, and had his wife and 2 small kids to fend for (one from his wife’s previous marriage). He asked me to ask for help from the brother I mentioned above (to dad, it was quite fair because dad took care of him from the age of 9Β  until he got married), but getting money from him (my brother) was very very difficult. Most of the time I survived on the scholarship money, or money given to me by my close friends, cousins and aunties. Yes, I did have aunties and cousins who were sympathetic towards me, and they remain my close and loved ones.

Financial problems, emotional problems, you name it! My studies declined, but luckily it wasn’t that bad, hence I managed to secure a scholarship to study in Australia.

When I was about to fly to austalia, I asked that brother, how would he send me off. His answer was very demotivating, and again I remember it very well: “if you take the bus, I’ll send you to Kota Bharu, if you take the train, I’ll send you to the train station”. He was referring to the trip to Kuala Lumpur. At that time, Kota Bharu was easily 12 hours drive away from Kuala Lumpur. Most families would hire a car and come down to Kuala Lumpur to send their kids to the airport.

How on earth did he think I, a 17 -year old girl would find her way to the airport (which she had never been to?). I decided to leave from my auntie’s house in Muar (Johor) because my cousin (demised many many years ago) had promised to send me to Subang Airport if I were to leave from there. What do I get from my brother? A scolding for being biased towards my aunties in Muar!! How could I not be so? They showered me with all the love I craved for!

My auntie was only a rubber tapper. My cousin was a government clerk who owned a very old Volkswagon. They told me, they could help me as much as they could, as long as it didn’t involve money, which was scarce to them. Despite that, my auntie had a kenduri doa selamat for me the night before we left for Kuala Lumpur (airport).

Much later, when I was already working they told me that the volkswagon broke down in Port Dickson on their way home! The car never travelled that far before that, so maybe it was too much for it. There was only “Senawang-Air Keroh” highway, while the rest was done using the old federal road!

I still remember the night at the airport. While all my other friends were well dressed in 3-piece suits that their parents ordered for them, I was only wearing a pair of Peter& Jeannie cotton jeans, a simple blouse and my prefect’s (school) blazer! Luckily the scholarship officer didn’t seem to mind my casual appearance!

Oh, where was my other brother, you might be wondering…Β  He was very poor then, but his heart was (and still is) full of love. I didn’t like to trouble him, but most of the time, he was always there for me. He visited me at the hostel regularly. Each time he came, just before he left, he would take out his wallet, counted his money. If there was RM10, he would give me RM5 and said to me he would use the other RM5 to buy fish for him to hawk the following day!

He was very angry when I told him what the other brother said to me. So he went to see his brother, and he said to him “If you are too busy to send our little sister off, give me some money. I need to buy the bus ticket and I want to send her off!”. That’s right, at the airport, I saw him waiting and smiling at me. Even now, 30 years on, i’m still chocked with emotions when I think of that night. He came in patched shirt but stood proud of me. He related to me how he went to see the other brother and got the bus-fare money from him!!

The moment I set foot on the Aussie soil, I said to myself, “I am in charge of my life now. It’s up to me what I want my future to be”. And the rest is history….

I always tell people I can forgive, but I will never forget.Our history isΒ  a big factor to what we are and how we feel today, trust me!! And now I think you will understand why close friends and caring relatives are of utmost importance to me!

If you’ve been following my blog, you would know that I still visit that brother who now lives in the house I grew up, though I no longer spend my night there.

I’ll continue my story later, if I feel i am up to it, hence no promise of “to be continued” πŸ™‚