Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Monday, September 29, 2008
Ilham, Nuha, Zakiah and me on Nuha's last day in office
To Nuha, I love you dear and I have very much enjoyed the sweet friendship.
I am currently at Emak's house in Seremban. We came back yesterday. However we are not here to spend the raya eve and pagi raya with Emak. Instead we will spend them at the parents-in-law's house in KL. Shamilah, my youngest sister who usually would spend the first raya with Emak has gone back to the in-laws' kampung in Kampong Parit Bangas, Sri Medan, Batu Pahat. Not letting Emak to do the raya prep by herself, I volunteered to help her out.
The daging dah dibeli a day before but Emak insisted that we top up for the serunding. I saw this bunting along the road side especially the stretch along Senawang and Ampangan.
Orang nak masak kan, so mestilah nak get the best daging. Emak was already in her meleter mood when I only was ready to go to the Pesta Mantai after sending off beloved hubby at the gate. (Beloved hubby tak dapat cuti langsung-langsung this raya because the boss who is not celebrating raya wants him to make the sacrifice for the subordinates yang nak balik kampung. Wah... besar sungguh pahala you, dear).
When we arrived at the Pesta Mantai at about 7.20 am, the jam has started. The waiting queue was already long. The irony part is none of the gerais is opened. The explanation to it is, it has to wait until the VVIP officiate the Pesta.
The jam to Pesta Mantai
One of the gerais
"Hallo Datuk Seri, kita orang nak masak lah... and banyak lagi kerja nak buat today. Can we cut out the protocol? Jual dulu lah and Datuk Seri can officiate later. By then, still got people around, don't worry lah!"
I spotted my fellow work colleague, Ruzaiman, who is based in Segamat but live in Lavender Heights in Senawang in the queue. He mentioned to me that he was there selepas Suboh. He was not even no 10 in the queue, ok. Sorry lah bro, I don't have the patience.
As an alternative, we headed to Pasar Ampangan to buy the daging. We saw the familiar faces there yang dropped by sekejap at Pesta Mantai and gave up. We managed to get what we want at Pasar Ampangan.
No, this doesn't go to us, but someone else
In no time, the rendang ayam was on the stove. Followed by the soup gear box, later the serunding. The chief cook, Emak, the deputy, me and the dayang dayang are (in order of priority of the murkiness of their ayer tangan in the food) Ayna, Aliah and Alim. Not forgetting the tapai pulut makers Ali, Aliah and Alina. With supporting actresses all time round Bibik Laili and Bibik Julian aka Juli.
Ayna memasak serunding
In the evening, Bibik Laili saved my day, tak payah hantar sampin beloved hubby and Alim to nyonya tukang jahit to jahit kelim. I must remember to give Bibik Laili extra duit raya. My brother, the famously known Pak Doctor is coming back from K. Kinabalu this evening with the whole family. The kids are already jumping up and down with excitement.
Tomorrow morning, as I send beloved hubby to work at Cyberjaya, we will head home. I don't mind spending the eve of raya and the first raya with my in-laws because petang first raya onwards and for the rest of the cuti til the weekend, I will be in Seremban spending the raya happy moments with the dearies of the family. Hooray!
Salam Aidilfitri everyone. Saya menyusun sepuluh jari memohon ampun dan maaf di atas segala kesalahan dan kesilapan be it in the cyberspace or out there.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Yesterday I followed the beloved husband to do his raya prep stuff like send the car for service and collect the boys and man baju melayu. We squeezed in the marketing at Jalan Othman in the schedule. The gerai ayam and gerai daging were crowded with people like me and the rest who will be celebrating raya. The schedule is pretty much the same year in and year out for us. Hope so...
You see, two days ago, whilst I was happily having the buka puasa with the children (beloved hubby was not around that day), something unpleasant happened. Ali, my 3rd Ace was relating about his last PSRA paper. Everyone at the dining table was in their chatty and chirpy mood including me. As I was heartily sipping the air kelapa, suddenly, the glass which was half full of the air kelapa slipped from my fingers and like a force from nowhere, it directly fell onto the dinner plate. The glass broke obviously. The plate terbelah dua. Jeng jeng jeng... Is that bad omen or what? Semua orang terdiam sekejap. I have never carelessly terlepas any glass before, be it whilst mengemas or masa wash the dishes, more so whilst I was drinking water from it.
The 5th Ace, Alim later said, "Pinggan makan kita dah tak cukup mama, kena beli lagi satu." Yup, a good reason to have a new set of dinner plate for this raya.
Hope tak ada apa-apa and it was just one of the unfortunate incident. May this raya be a happy one for all of us.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Tuesday 23rd Sept 2008
8.30 am to 7.00 pm
Attended the Human Resource Planning Committee meeting. First part was the usual regular stuff. The evening part was the discussion on manpower requirement for the next financial year. I requested for two additional counsels. Unfortunately the decision is KIV. Though I am part of the committee, some of us thought that I am planning to come up with a law firm. Huh! We all strike tak give advice as a sense of retaliation baru tau! If I get additional satu pun cukup. My lawyers are overstretched already. Please don't complain if we take our time in rendering the services babe !
C'mon, we are one of the top generating revenue companies, and yet comparatively, our legal department is the smallest amongst these companies.
Buka puasa in the car with Mesra mineral water, hu hu.
Wednesday 24th Sept 2008
Woke up with conjunctivitis. Have so many meetings today. Can't afford to take MC. So pergi jugak office. Siapa-siapa yang terjangkit tu, good for you. It will be early cuti raya for you.
9.00 am to 12.00 noon
Attended the Management Quality Steering Committee meeting. No brainer. So most of the time I was fiddling away with blackberry replying emails.
12.00 noon to 2.30 pm
Attended the Health Safety and Environment Steering Committee meeting. Eye opener. A lot of general knowledge. I learn a lot of new things with regard to the plants during this kind of meeting.
1.00 pm to 1.45 pm
Interrupted by a call from VP office. VP called me and MD to mengadap. During other times when VP has discussion with me only, I always feel VP doesn't like me. But this time round, VP appeared to be ok towards me. In the contrary, I think it was the MD yang intimidated with VP. VP kata minyak turun 10 sen, but so far no official news yet.
3.00 pm to 5.00 pm
Meeting with another boss on some fine-tuning of document.
No mood of raya yet. But when I was about to go back, Kak Zai, the tailor knocked on my door. Yay! Baju raya anak dara 3 orang and emak dara dah siap. Thank you Kak Zai for bringing good news. Kekontangan anything yang ceria the past few days. The bajus are really nice. Kak Zai jahit baju kurung tulang belut, all sembat, tak main lah jahit mesin. For adult, it only costs RM55. This kind of tailor is a rare specie nowadays.
Another good news. Like what the VP said, the fuel pump price is now RM2.45 per litre. Can balik kampong this raya and jalan merata.
That night got diarrhoea. Must be the siput sedut I took for dinner. I was flat the whole night. However, sempat bangun for isyak, terawih etc at 2.30 am.
Thursday 25th Sept 2000
8.30 am to 9.30 am
Attended pre steering committee meeting for Project code named Pearl.
1.30 pm to 4.30 pm
Attended Pearl Project Steering Committee meeting. Gaduh besar with the potential partners. But in the spirit of raya, we bersalam-salaman after that. Bengang kat MD because he fixed the signing ceremony in the land below the winds that week of PMR. Kesian Aliah, the 1st Ace. I want to take leave that week to give moral support to her. Spoil je!
In the evening, the kuih raya supplier came. The kuih makmur and choc chips were mouth watery.
Bought MPO tickets for Khadijah Ibrahim, Ramli Sarip and Datuk Ahmad Nawab concert on 17th Nov. Hope I can make it for the concert. Something to look forward to the next two months.
Hish, bila nak dapat mood raya ni? Tomorrow is the last working day before I take the break for raya. Hope the next few days will be different.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Alina, the princess
Alina and Ali
However, the most detested behaviour of hers is, she loves to merajuk. She can merajuk for the simplest thing. Merajuk because the rice was too much, she woke up late, we teased her, berebut kan remote TV, she can't go to the playground because it was raining, her school book was missing, her siblings ignored her, the Apple Peel Fresh juice was too little left for her to consume and lots more ridiculous occurences. As she merajuk she sometimes throw tantrums. The most classic merajuk happened just a couple of days ago.
She woke up a bit late after sahur that morning and was desperately hunting for her black pair of school socks. Muka dia panjang berinci inci sebab merajuk and she refused to say a single word bila tanya what was wrong with her. I presumed she must have misplaced them. In the midst of hunting for them, Pak Long, the van driver arrived. She pun naik hangin because stokin tak jumpa jumpa lagi. Fearing that she will be left by the van, she ran into my room and took something out from the drawer. I didn't know what it was.
During buka puasa she happily told us her story. Since she could not find her black socks, she had no choice and her smart thinking cap urged her to take my beloved hubby's black socks and she wore them! The highlight of the story was, dekat sekolah, ada spot check on the school uniform. Obviously, the teacher saw her wearing the large socks for her size. The teacher was shocked and speechless. Yang best tu, afterwards she had to go to the teachers' staff room to send some books. Nowadays, the pupils have to take off their shoes when entering the staff room. When she took off her shoes, the oversized socks terlondeh and she can't stop but felt so embarrased. Some teachers were there and saw Alina and her black terlondeh oversized socks. Alina quickly put the books away and ran her life out of the teachers' sight. Poor girl.
Yup, that is my Alina whom we truly enjoy and love. Alina oh Alina ! Jangan merajuk rajuk lagi, ok.
From L to R: Alina, Ali, Alim, Aliah and Ayna
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Abah was a teacher holding only a Sekolah Menengah Melayu certificate. Prior to his retirement, he taught BM and Sejarah at a Chinese school in Seremban. Teaching is a noble profession however it didn't really give the satisfaction to Abah. With a meagre RM 900 salary a month, it wasn't sufficient for Abah to support our family of six. So Abah opened and operated a girls' hostel in Fortune Garden (now Taman Dato Shahbandar) to make sure that the student girls at Sek Men Teknik Ampangan had a proper place to stay. I remember how Abah had to wake up as early as 5 am to go to Pasar Besar Seremban to buy groceries for the students so that they can have decent meals throughout the day.
Abah is a pillar to his siblings. He made sure that most of his adik beradik stay near our house in Fortune Garden so that they get to see each other regularly. I think Abah even financially supported one or two of his adik beradik to purchase the house to achieve this purpose. When arwah uwan and atuk were sick, it was a lot easier for his adik beradik to attend to them. Not really attending to them per se because I saw Abah mostly did the running arounds, but at least the rest of the adik beradik were progressively informed of arwah atuk's and uwan's health conditions, be it when they were at mak Yan's house or at the hospital.
Abah is the mover, shaker and shaper in the family. I truly feel if I did not follow Abah's wishes that I pursue my studies in IIU (I insisted to pursue business studies in the States) I wouldn't be where I am today. The IIU episode has a lot of Abah's contribution to it. A rebel I was, I refused to wear the tudung after I finished my Australian Matriculation (SAM). Abah knew I had quite a life when I was doing SAM in Sri Inai, Ipoh. He told me one day that he wished I start learning to wear the tudung. So obviously when my application was accepted at IIU, Abah's wishes came true. He didn't mind that I didnt wear it 100%, slowly but surely I was learning.
He jubilated with my entrance in IIU that he allowed me have his old car when I was doing my second year. The real reason behind it was that it would facilitated my returning home from Section 17 PJ to Seremban, if not weekly, forthnightly. To the contrary, the car was very instrumental to me and my friends' enjoyment. There were Sue, Ina, Nim and towards the end of my 4 years study in IIU, the successful *** (who by the way now lives in the **** ***** *** in Jakarta), who became my regular passengers to places like Jaya Supermarket, Centralmart and Metrojaya BB Plaza. Nonetheless, I did go back almost every weekend to Seremban to make sure I see Abah and that he did not suspect my "hoora" activities in IIU.
By the way, before I was able to drive the car to PJ, Abah had forced me to drive his newly acquired Proton Saga NY 600, with him seated next to me for a family cuti cuti Malaysia. He made me drove from Seremban to Kuantan, next to K. Terengganu, then to Kota Bharu. We crossed the East West Highway through Grik, drove to Bukit Kayu Hitam, then down to Penang, Ipoh and finally home. Phew! It took us a whole week. So you can imagine how much driving mistakes I committed during the entire 7 day-trip and Abah's yack yack were endless.
In IIU too, Abah suspected that I was going out with a foreigner. He didn't show that he didn't like it but because Abah sembahyang and berdoa a lot, finally after two years of bercinta, the guy and I went separate ways. Imagine how relief Abah was.
Dipendekkan cerita, I managed to graduate with flying colours from IIU. He came for the graduation with Mak and Shamilah but the sedih part was Abah didn't turn up for my unforgettable Call To The Bar event. Only Mak, Anyah and Shah (my boyfriend then) came. I can't recall why Abah didn't go that day, was it because he had some masjid activities? I suspected he didn't want to see Shah.
As the years flew, I was destined to marry my beloved hubby. I remember there was a lot of pep talks between Abah and me before the wedding. It was not like a real huge objection. Abah merely dissented because he thought that me, well we, being orang kampong may not blend well with the Dato' and Datin family. To him, the lifestyles are different. I sensed some truth during the groom's wedding reception. Abah was a bit uneasy, like macam out of place.
Fortunately, things turned out very well for both families. There were so many family functions to attend to. With the kelahiran cucus, besan berjumpa, silaturrahim diperkuatkan, Alhamdulillah, Abah's fears were lifted.
The last event that Abah held for us before his demise was Alina's cukur jambul. He insisted that we did the khenduri besar-besaran. We had the kompang, the marhaban and lastly the berandoi and naik buai for Alina. It was quite a feast. Never did we realise that about six months after that Abah would leave us forever.
Abah and his closed friends at Alina's khenduri cukur jambul.
This is our last khenduri together.
He said, " Bubur yang Mak masak ni sedap lah. Mungkin sebab Yati yang suap Abah. Lama dah Abah tak dapat makan bubur. Nanti bila Abah sihat boleh makan banyak lagi."
After that, as waktu maghrib pun dah masuk, Abah asked me to help him baca bacaan dalam solat as he performed his solat on his bed.
There was no major improvement to Abah's condition the next day. I was about to perform my Isyak that night when the doctor informed us that Abah had to be xrayed because his stomach was bleeding, I vividly remember how he looked at me sadly from his stretcher about to be wheeled to the xray room. I saw no light in his eyes. As I finished my isyak prayers, suddenly I heard cries outside the room and instantly I knew that Abah has passed away. I frantically searched for Mak who was sobbing away. Gosh, she is such a strong woman and for me if I could acquire half of her strength that is more than enough.
About 10 minutes later, the body was brought back to the ward. Hangat lagi badan dia. Baru 20 minit lepas nampak Abah staring at me and tiba tiba Abah dah tak ada. All of us were sobbing quietly and wished that Abah could be given a while longer with us. Seperti yang Allah kata, bila ajal itu datang, ia tidak seminit awal dan ia juga tidak seminit lewat.
Nine years has now passed. I wish Abah could see me where I am today and share with me the sweet success I had tasted. I want to see him again, joking and laughing with my children who will enjoy his Atuk's companion and wisdom. I still turn and talk to Abah in my times of sadness and disappointment. I want him to know that I realised there were some truth in what he said and reminded me. Undoubtedly, Abah still rests in the small corner of my heart.
As we do the tahlil for Abah tonight at the masjid nearby, I hope and pray to Allah that doa anak ini akan sampai ke Abah. I hope he knows how deeply we miss and love him. Al Fatihah... to dear Abah.
One for the family. Our last vacation in Cameron Highlands with Abah.
I was 6 months pregnant with Alina.
As a footnote, do catch the blog on Abah by Kay's at her blog http://sembangkay.blogspot.com/ when she does one. I was hoping she could post her tribute to Abah earlier than mine.
Friday, September 19, 2008
I walked out of the meetings with the hope that I will pay more attention to spending my money, especially when the festive Eidul Fitr season is nearing. Buy things which are necessary and pay alms as affordable.
Today is Pay Day and with a happier note, we received a bit more extra money as duit raya. After a lot of thoughts about it, I believe the duit raya will be better utilised to bail someone out from his financial crisis (there goes the bracelet which I have been eyeing at Selberan!). Am I so baik or what? In the light of Ramadhan I want to do good for people. I read some translation in the Quran which means lebih kurang lah,... when we receive rezki, they are not all ours. We have to give it out for good and only the remaining one is ours. With that, the rezki from Allah will keep on coming. Bersedekah during this Ramadhan is lebih afdhal to the closed ones, like those whom we are related to, the orphans, the poor and the needy.
Come to think of it, I have been spending the extra money which I got from the company not for myself for some years already. Most of all, by helping others in their poor financial planning. Huh, no wonder I tak kaya kaya, but I can see that I have never been in desperado of money when I need some. Partly sebab the mentioned translated ayat Quran tu kot? Whatever it is, I do hope that people do not topple or succumb to debts like AIG, Lehman Brothers or Merrill Lynch because of poor financial planning (including impulse spending, he he...). Well, can equate lah although these insurance and financial institutions were dragged down partly because of the tempias of sub-prime crisis.
Anyway, I sure hope that the Selberan bracelet could still be mine one day. Hopefully, an acquisition through and by someone special . Tak pe not any time soon, but bila bila lah when savings dah cukup. Nudge nudge.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Hubby and me on our BJJ 600Yamaha Nouvo
"Boss, I have tendered my resignation letter today. The letter must be on your table already."
"You see Boss, you have been asking me to do improvements especially to my department and the company as a whole, but I am very uncomfortable because I know some of my peers don't like it. I am not sure myself whether you sanction them. I have tried my level best. Since you will absolutely bring this up during my mid year and year end appraisal and I have the tendency of getting a bad rating, so I call it quits!"
"If you are tired, my dear, you can take a break, but make sure it is a short one cos we have lots of things do here in the office. Think and consider about it carefully."
As my Boss practices modern and pious Islamic teachings, he will definitely say,
"This is Ramadhan. Ini ujian from Allah Taala. Spend your nights on solat terawih, mid nites on tahajjud and istikharah. Seek guidance from Him. And by the time you come back for raya... I will see you. I hope you will change your mind."
Waaa... I haven't done my tahajjud on many nights during Ramadhan (especially the last 10 nites) for a long time. As far as I could remember, the last time was when I was an IIU student and the Ramadhan always clashed with the long IIU break.
And I get to teach my daughters how to bake cookies and cakes this time too. Shop for new curtains. Do my facial every week to prepare for this raya so that I don't look so glum.
Maybe I should do that.
By the time I come back to work, I think I will feel a lot better, and perhaps negotiate for a pay raise?
Monday, September 15, 2008
PM's Office at Putrajaya
For making the sale happened, many thanks goes to Suraya, Zaileen, Nora and Wani. Without all of you, my life would be a lot messier for this exercise.
At 9.30 am, a peer review on the JV documents for another exercise with my business colleagues was held. A lengthy session, but we managed to craft what we wanted. Facing the potential partners this coming Friday wouldn't be so bad after all I hope. Last week I was worried sick, because we were not so sure as to what our position was on the cash call and any default. Another sticky point will be the key personnel, we should have control since we have a bigger majority, which I foresee will be a confrontational issue. This lasted till 1 pm.
At 1 pm, the MD called me, yet another session with regard to the JV and other pressing matters. At 2.30 pm, we started another pow wow session to look at the documents in detail. We have to be prepared for another review session with another boss whom I report to on a dotted line tomorrow.
Finally, I managed to head home at 4.45 pm. It was the changing of shifts from shift pagi to shift petang. From a "powerful" woman in suit, I have transformed into a bibik. First assignment in the shift petang is to send the 3 Aces for kumon. Then, I hurriedly went home and straight headed to the kitchen. By that time it was already drizzling. So have to forget the idea of going to Bazaar Ramadhan today. First dish, kari ayam, second dish, chap chai (lucky the two lauks from Mak's yesterday are still edible, that will be the third and fourth dishes). By that time hubby had to call me, sahaja to disturb me who was busy cooking. Fried keropok lekor and cooked the noodles for laksa penang (thank you too to Mak and Shamilah for letting me tapau the kuah laksa from last night's). The phone rang again and this time round it was the mother-in-law asking me about new maid.
Buzz here, buzz there...... and by 7.15 pm, I finally managed to sit peacefully with the rest of the family members except for Alim for Iftaar at the dining table. And my poor boy Alim, fell asleep on the sofa. This must be because I scolded him for not completing his kumon and he retaliated by refusing not to go to kumon with his kakaks.
Sedapnya Alim tidur during Maghrib
Sunday, September 14, 2008
It is also on this Ramadhan that I first start to blog. It is not a motherhood statement, like some who always wanted to start one but get delayed or shelved, in my case it is purely due to work and home commitments. At work, being part of the management team of a plc is a marathon, not to mention challenging. Compliance and governance all the way. No slip up, no omission and no blunder in whatever I do, otherwise it will be the non-stop call from Mr EA from the President's office. You will be lucky if they are just unpleasant words blurted from him cos most times they will be the foul words.
The home front is equally challenging. Attending to 5 growing up chidren whom I nickname them as 5 Aces is laborious yet gratifying. The words "mama" and "mommy" would have been called at least 30 times a day on the account that one Ace call me at least 6 times a day. That would be once during breakfast, once during lunch when they call me at the office, twice during anytime before Maghrib which always seems to be the busiest time of all, once during dinner and lastly once before they go to bed.
It is also the first time that I am working and attending to home maid-less during the fasting month. I reserve my comments on the story of maids in other posting. To manage the arduous day, I will be in the office as early as 8 am, do my work continuously, skip the window shopping during lunch time at the shopping mall downstairs and make sure I head home by 4.30 pm to prepare iftaar for the family. Woh... how tireless can that be.
Nonetheless I am all geared up to share the humdrum of my days ahead. Although the next two weeks until Eidul Fitr are all booked for meetings, I hope to spare time to post one or two lines for the blog.