Friday, June 29, 2007

Breakfast & Jink!


Good Morning! So what do you usually have for breakfast? Depending on where you are? In Subang Jaya here, most often then not, the makcik will sell Nasi Lemak, Meehoon, Mee goreng, some kuih, etc. If you are in the east coast, probably there will be arrays of morning breakfast to fill up your tummy. Nasi minyak, Nasi dagang, Nasi Kerabu, Laksam and even satay will be sold there in the morning. I have been there recently so I know. Well you can get some of them here but not all. Maybe the urbanite's palate is not as exotic as the eastern coast people.

Anyway, I was driving to the office this morning and was thinking, what should I have for breakfast? Nasi lemak?? Ehmm... I don't think so cos I had just eat it yesterday at the birthday cum farewell thinggy. So probably fried meehoon or mee.

Thus before arriving at my office, I stopped at one stall that sells nasi lemak, fried meehoon, mee and some kuih. The looks of fried meehoon, mee and kuetiaw does look appetising to me. So to be safe, I bought a pack of mixture of fried mee and meehoon - just in case if one is not good, hey you can try eat the other one, right. To be cautious, I asked that guy to add in a bit of sambal i.e. of both mee & meehoon doesn't get along to my liking, there's sambal to add the flavour. And I bought some kuih, just in case the main course doesn't satisfy my palate.

Friend meehon mixed with fried mee and sambal.
(Tak sedap pun!!!!)

True enough, when I tasted the fried mee, it was just plain taste. No vegetable nor any meat or chicken. The same goes to the fried meehoon. Ah! what a waste. Luckily the sambal adds more taste to it but I didn't finish it all.

And I was thinking....... I don't think I want to buy it anymore. Probably if I were to fried it myself, it would have tasted better. But then again, when was the last time I cook???? Maybe some 20 years ago when I was in US as a college student. hehehe.. So what the heck, try another makcik next time.


So what breakfast have to do with jinx? Nothing at all. But let me tell you something.

As usual, I woke up early before 6am. And as usual before 6.30am, after morning prayers, I am ready for work. And as usual, bibik will prepare my hot Milo on the table before I leave.

Somehow this morning and as usual, I was sipping my Milo. And I did it as normal as anybody would, handle the mug and got it onto my lips. But all of the sudden, the mug that I was handling slipped off my lips and the Milo splashed over my chin and my shirt.

It was just in a split second that things happen. Of course immediately, I get some towel to wipe my chin. But my clean shirt is now wet with Milo.

My immediate reaction was, hey there must be something wrong! It is a sign of something that is going to happen to me? Bad? Is it a JINX? I don't know. Many things ran into my mind. Maybe this thing happened so that I don't have to leave the house that early. Probably, the time taken for me to change my shirt would probably save me the times I'll be driving by then. Or is it this or that!!!

But one thing for sure, I've started to recite doa and wirik while driving. You never knows what will happen right? Of course, I drive slowly than usual. Usually if I drive from home by 6.30 am, I would arrive about 7.05am at the office. But today I arrive slightly later. But Alhamdullilah, arrived safely.

So what's the jinx? I don't know. Probably there is or probably there is not! Only God knows best.

Main Entry: jinx
Part of Speech: noun
Definition: curse
Synonyms: black magic, charm, double whammy, enchantment, evil eye*, hex, hoodoo*, kibosh, nemesis, plague, spell, voodoo*, whammy

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Strawberry cake & Nasi Lemak


This morning we were called in into the meeting room for a special occasion. It's the Boss's Birthday. Nena, the secretary had arranged for it. Unfortunately we heard that she met with an accident on the way to work this morning.She had made some collections from everybody earlier but unfortunately she can't make it this morning.

So we gathered at the meeting room. There on the table were nasi lemak, kuih koci, kuah talam ubi, karipap and the nice strawberry decorated cake. What a combination ... strawberry cake & nasi lemak.

The Boss gave a short speech .. it's in between the delight of having his birthday celebrated and also his despondent resignation's farewell. He had a short meeting last Friday informing the staff of his resignation. Well he is moving on to something else.

Well I took it as a challenge. The Company is not doing too well and obviously somebody will look elsewhere to prosper in their career.

Anyway, the Strawberry cake and the Nasi Lemak was really good.


Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Happy Father's Day

I know Father's Day falls on 17 June 2007. But that Sunday, we were in Marang and on the way back to KL after Emma & Denise's Nikah. I wasn't really into Father's Day. Yeah, I know I'm a father but I'm not the kind of guy that really celebrates Father's Day. I mean.. you what I mean...

Anyway, when I arrived home from Marang at about 6.30pm on Sunday, my beloved wife, Ky and Angah wished me Happy Father's Day. Of course Mimi, gave me a Happy Father's Day card. Mimi will always be the one who will went to search for a card and get all her brothers to sign it.

I do get Father's Day and Birthday card's from my kids but this one was quite interesting.
It say's "WHAT IS DAD?" and on the inner page it say's "A SECOND CHANCE AFTER MOM HAS SAID "NO".... HAPPY FATHER'S DAY.

Hehee.. But it is true. My kids knew my weaknesses. That's when they prey on me whenever their mom said "NO" to them. As for me, not knowing what had happen, just went along with the kids and they got what they want. The truth came out when their mom saw what they got. "Kan Mak cakap tak boleh" Ky's remarks. " Ayah kata boleh" Mimi or Acik's answered her mom. And I was puzzled and felt victimised. I didn't know what transactions and dealing the kids had with their Mom. As a perfect innocent victim, I would answer, "Entah lah Yang, budak-budak tu hendak, I belikan lah." And that happen not only once, I can tell you that.

Well, being a father of four, 3 boys and a girl, I want to give them the best, especially things that I was deprieved when I was a kid. There were no McDonald nor KFC. Neither was stall selling burgers nor nasi lemak kukus at night. Big shopping Malls and Hypermarkets was unheard of that time. It was only Ampang, Campbell and Pertama Shopping complex. Bata and Fung Keong shoes, were the branded name then. Now they have numerous brands that sometimes I could figure out which one is the best.

So am I wrong to give them what I didn't get when I was their age???? Hmm.. only their mother knows the answer.

Well HAPPY FATHER'S DAY TO ALL FATHERS (although it's belated). But then again, we fathers are not a fussy as the mothers, right!!!!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Emma & Denise's Wedding Reception in KL

Reception at Seri Melayu (Saturday 23 June 2007)

Everyone was excited and getting ready for the big day at Seri Melayu and WIsma Getah Asli. On Friday after work , I was at Kak Chik's house in Kg Tunku till midnite finalising on the details including the attendance to the reception. With last minutes changes, some of the itinerary had to be changed. Tunku Soraya (Sultan Kedah's daughter) initially informed she's coming alone. Now the husband, the Raja Kecil Sulong Perak is coming too. Thus all the proper address had to be sought out properly. Kak Chik insisted that I have to be the MC with Fifi. With voice croaking due to the sore throat and bad cough, and yet I still have to do it. Help me God.

So by 10.00 am on Saturday, everybody was already at Seri Melayu, Jalan Conlay. I got to fetch my mom earlier and got her wheelchair together so that she too can witness her first grand daugther's wedding. Emma specifically mentioned to her Nenek that she wanted ther Nenek to attend her wedding.

Since I was early, I got to meet the Balle Balle group and the Dancers who are going to perform, and finalising what to they had to do.

Last minutes changes to the VIP tables were made. Instead of 4, now there will be 6 tables now as more Tan Sri and Datuks are coming. Got it done with Liza, the Seri Melayu liasion executives who made the arrangement for us. Also briefed the family members and people who was already assigned what to do. Everybody was well prepared for this occassion.

By 11.45 am guests starts to arrived. By 12.00 noon more guests coming and by 12.30 pm three quarter of the hall was filled up. Emma & Denise came right on time.

Once the kompang sound was heard, as the MC, Fifi & I, announced their arrival. The bride & groom were led by the flowers girls and boys (Ina - my youngest sister, painstakingly arranged these for kids). Emma and Denise looks splendid in matching beige songket outfit. It was just simple outfit but nice on them. Emma had once told me that she don't want waste money on wedding dresses. A simple songket will do.

Selawat was read by Hj Abu Bakar (Kak Chik's close friend) once the bride and groom stepped into the hall. He was backed up by Abg Dak and the boys. These boys were trained earlier. The guests of honour followed behind them including
Tunku Soraya (Sultan Kedah's daughter) and the Raja Kecil Sulong Perak . When the bride & groom were seated, the pencak silat was perfomed.

Once the silat completed, then that was time my MCing skill have to put into practise. Of course the first to be addressed was the royalties. With lots of practise I had done earlier and lots of Hacks and warm water, it was done perfectly. I was earlier scared if I addressed them wrong ly because of their long names. "Yang Amat Mulia Raja Dato Seri Iskandar Dzukarnain ibni Almarhum Sultan Idris Shah, Raja Kecil Sulong Perak dan Yang Amat Mulia Dato Seri Tunku Soraya binti KDYMM Tuanku Sutan Haji Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah." Luckily I got it done without any hiccup. The rest was a cool as the breeze... Of course the scripts include Malay and English as some of the guests were from Irealand and Holland. I want them to understand our culture as well.

Thereon, the Merenjis ceremony begun. Of course it started with the Royalties and then the parents of the bride and groom. Emma also wanted her ex-boss Dave and best friend Lydia who came from Ireland to do the merenjis too.

After the merenjis, both the bride & groom were led to the Main table for "makan beradat". I have already arranged for the kompang and main table waiters to do the grand entrance for the food presentation. They did it as what I wanted.

Once they started having the sumptuous food, the cultural dance by Putriwara and muzik by Balle Balle started. 3 dances and few songs were performed. Abg Zali already informed me that by 2.00pm the royalties have to leave and he requested his thank you speech be done before they leave. So by 1.50 pm, I annouce for Abg Zali to give his speech. Initially, in the schedule Riza (Emma's brother) and Michel (Denise brother) were supposed to give their speeches first but we did some small changes at last minutes.

Once his thank you speech was done, I announce that the Royalties was leaving. Thereon we continue with the rest of the programme.

After the Royalties left, Riza & Michel delievered their speeches. Riza gave a good humorous speech althought he was panicky initially as he never spoke publicly. After their speeches, Emma & Denise was later invited onto the stage again for the "Pulut Kuning" cutting. Thereon, they were led to the main entrance to thanks all the quests.

But the program doesn't ends there. Once most of the guests had left, Kak Chik specifically request for Joget Lambak, especially her foreign guests. The cultural dancers were already informed earlier and they waited to entertain the foreign guests.

Later on, family photos were taken i.e. family by family. It wasn't an easy task calling family every members to gather especially when you have big extended family like us. But I managed it well when I grabbed the microphone and call them one by one.

Kak Cik's family together with her
new in-laws.

My family and I. We wore shades of
brown and orange as the theme colour.

Emma's friends (Lydia, Gary, Martina, Claire)
and Emma's ex-Boss (Dave & Cathy) all
from Ireland.

We left Seri Melayu by about 3.00 pm. I was already coughing badly again. But I already asked Mike & Fifi to be the MC for tomorrow.

Reception at Bangunan Getah Asli (Sunday 24 June 2007)

As the Seri Melayu receptions was mainly for the bride's parents business-related associates and friends, this reception at Getah Asli, was meant for the family members and relatives, near and far.

By 10.00 am, our family members were already there to get all the things ready. Since the guests will arrive staggeredly, more helps are needed.

Jeman (my brother) handles the preparation of the hall and the catering. A simple but beautiful "pelamin was done".

The flower girls were already putting on make-ups and dressed prettily in their gowns. The two boys; Adik & Nikki, wore cute small suits.

Guests started arriving by 12 noon. Relatives who I have not met so long also came. This is the time to have small chat with them and updating their family. Of course, most of them went to see my mom whom they have not met for ages. We only meet relatives during occassions like wedding and funerals. I used to take my mom to go to all these functions before but since a few years back when I mom was not in the her best of health, she decided not go anymore especially when she is on the wheel chair. So this is the best time for my relatives to meet my mom. My mom is their eldest living aunt.

Anyway, the bride and groom supposedly to arrive at 1 pm. But since they stayed in a hotel nearby, and got to check out by 12.00 noon, they arrived early. Thus we have to station them in a room while waiting for 1.00 pm.

Once more guests have arrived, the bride & groom made their grand entrance with the kompang and the selawat.

Doa was also read and subsequantly the merenjis was done. This time, the merenjis was done by family members. My eldest brother, Abang and his wife were called for the merenjis. Followed by Hj Abu Bakar and wife, the doa reciter for both occasion and also Kak Chik's good friend. Abg Dak and wife, Nek cu and Kak Lang also did the merenjis. Also our eldest surviving uncle from Klang.

Then the makan beradat took place. I have already consulted Kak Chik on who are supposed to be seated at the main table. Of course with few changes here and there at the last minute.

This reception is more of 'free and easy' without much formal protocol. Although I have itemised out the program in details, but it was not as difficult as the one in Seri Melayu. So once the bride & groom had done with their makan beradat, Abg Zali (bride's father) gave an informal thank you speech.

Later on the bride & groom were invited to cut a three-tier wedding cake

Thereon, both bride & groom just went round thanking the guests for coming to their reception. As I said, this is more informal and easy going reception.

By 3.00 pm we were already packing up to leave. Alhamdulillah all went well without major hiccups. I was glad to be trusted to be Chairman of this Organising Commitee for this wedding. The experience I got is priceless. Of course, congratulatory words from people who appreciated our effort in organising it, was meaningful for us. After all the works, many meetings and months of prepararion, this results in a well organised wedding. Thanks to the cooperation of all family members who deserved a standing ovation.

To Emma & Denise, May Allah Blessed Your Marriage. May Both of You Lead A Happy and Blissful Life Together In The Right Path of Allah. Specially to Daniel Denise Huisman, Be a Good Muslim Husband.

Shazwani Athira Syamsul Fizi

I specially took this little girl's photo as she is someone special to us. Little Wani as we call her (Shazwani Athira) is the first grand daughter on my family side and my mom's first great grandchild. She such a lovely girl and we didn't know that she can already stand on her own at age of 8 months old. We are anxious to see her taking her first step. This photo was taken at Emma's wedding.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Preparing MC Scripts

This Saturday will be a big event for the Family. It's Emma & Dennise wedding reception at Seri Melayu. Most of the Invitees are Kak Chik and Abg Zali's corporate business friends, Rotarian, SMSAH Alumni friends, Kak Chik's foster children (they have fostering many foreign students every year) and some of Emma's college friends from Ireland.

Sunday's reception will be at Wisma Getah Asli in Jalan Ampang. next to KLCC. It is more of family members invitation as Seri Melayu cannot accommodate everybody there.

Initially Fifi (Emma's younger sister) will be MCing the ceremony with her friend's Nadia but later Nadia back off. Thus I was insisted to do the MCing with Fifi. Well I had done it the wedding a few times before.

So now come the preparation of the MC scripts. This time around, it has to be done with mixture of Malay and English as the guests are not only local but also many foreigners. Luckily I have compiled some malay pantuns which is now handy as pantuns makes the ceremony more lively.

Fifi already called me yesterday. "Uncle. Script MC tu dah siap ke belum?". She already expected me to do everything and all she has to do is just read it out???? Anyway I've already completed it and email to her.

I fact I have already finished the MC Scripts for Sunday's event for Fifi and Mike (Fifi's friend). Let the younger people handle it. It was just 'copy and paste' thinggy from my Seri Melayu script. It was much simpler one.

But my voice is still croaking. Can I MC the ceremony on Saturday???? There will be Tan Sri and Datuks attending. So will be the Sultan Kedah's daughter. I'm getting the jitters already and yet my voice still croaking.

Bad cough and croaking voice

Since Monday, when I got back into the office, I was coughing furiously. I tried some Hacks but it didn't help much. When I got back, I swallowed some left over of cough mixtures I saw in the fridge at home. It didn't help either.

On Tuesday, I was still coughing in the office. I thought of leaving early but due to some preparation for slides presentation for my Boss, I had to complete it until lunch time. I emailed him a copy plus a print out on his desk. As I leave for the clinic, I sms him that I won't be attending the meeting and now heading to the clinic.

Went to see a Doctor at my family clinic. Saw a new Doctor (Locum) there and got 2 days MC as my cough is getting worst. Rested the whole evening at home after taking some medicines.

On Wednesday, I have already arrange for a meeting with Liza (Mktg Exec) at Seri Melayu. Sms my Kak Chik and Abg Zali about the meeting so that they remember to join the meeting. Well as the organising chairman cum event manager (self elected I say), I have to arrange everything so that everything will work out smoothly.

I arrived Seri Melayu about 11.45 am and the rest came slightly later. So we finalised the whole thing with Liza and Kak Chik paid out the balance of the bills. Had free lunch there too. By 2.30pm we settled everything and we left. I dropped by at Mak's place on the way back.

My voice is still croaking and who can replace me for the MC on Saturday???? God please help me retain my voice.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Emma & Denise's Nikah in Terengganu

Day 1 - 15 June 2007 (Friday)

As planned, we gathered at Mak's place by 8.00 am. Everybody was there will full loads of things to bring to Terengganu. After a Doa was read by Abg Teh, we started out journey to Terengganu with a scheduled stop at R&R Temerloh.

Thereon, we headed for Marang. Before reaching Kemaman, Abg and Abg Teh stopped for Friday's prayers whilst the rest of us drive on further. The Selamat Datang ke Terengganu sign board welcoming us to that state once we entered Cukai. We reached Marang at about 3.30pm. We were housed in 3 chalets but most were housed in Impiana Rumuda Chalet - a small but quite comfortable place with air-cond. rooms.

Kak Chik and family were already there. We met Denise's family who came a day earlier. Met Riek (Denise mom), Michel (brother), Manon (sister-in-law) and their 2 lovely kids. There were nice family and we had no problem getting along with each other despite our family never met them before.

While waiting for the rest to arrive, some of the kids couldn't wait to jump into the sea. Full of joy. Although, Marang's beach was not the best beach in the world, the kids wouldn't care as long as there is water to play in.

Once when almost everybody around ( although some still haven't arrived yet), we started to organise some games. Although we plan to start at 5.30pm but since not many people were around yet, we then start at 6.00pm. Initially everybody was tired and wasn't in the mood for anything. But they were transformed once we divided them into teams head by my bothers and in-laws. Ina (my youngest sis) and Fifi (niece) helped me organised these games.

Once everybody had settled in their team, we started to play the "coconut bowling". Yeah coconut as the bowling ball and water-filled mineral bottle as the pins. It was quite interesting when everyone tried hard to get the pins down with all tactics and style.

The next game was passing rubber bands using straws from one person to another without using their hands. It was hilarious to see them doing things that they have not done before. Young and old alike. Everybody participated and it was quite amusing to see those who were quiet and reserved becoming hysterical and screaming for their teams especially the uncles and aunties.

Next we have another game i.e. filling up water into a container using sponge. By now everybody was getting more competitive and strategising how they could win. Although it was drizzling by then, they continued to play. By 7.30pm it was already maghrib and we had to stop playing although there were many games to be played.

At night, some of us went to do the 'squid jigging' (candat sotong). I was too tired to go after a long day. I heard they came back about 2 am with only 4 squids.

There was a sudden black out all over the town. It was quite humid. Luckily we were supplied with candle light. The electric supply only came back by 10.00pm.

Day 2 - 16 June 2007 (Saturday)

Woke up early as usual and took a short walk to the beach. Very calm. Only the sound of waves can be heard - no sounds traffics. How I wish I could be there more often.

Kak Chik went out early to by breakfast for us. She bought all the Terengganu breakfast delicacies she found at the market. Having breakfast at the "wakaf" next to the chalet beside the sea was mesmerising as well.

The ladies started preparing bunga rampai for the nikah ceremony. Riek (Denise's mom) also help out. It an experience for her.

Since the Nikah will only be after Asar, so it was free and easy for us. By 10.30 am, some of us went to Pasar Payang in K.Terengganu. I had been there twice before. Since I knew the way there, most of them followed.

Although Pasar Payang a tourist attraction but it's not the best and most comfortable place for shopping. It had not changed much since I last been there. It was humid, hot and not much ventilation. I wonder how people can survive there for years selling their stuff.

After making a round with my sis and little Mimi, we had to take a breather outside the place. Most of the shops sold the same thing. It's either some batik (which I think its out of fashion too), songket (which they sold exorbitantly expensive since your don't speak their slang) or some Thailand stuff. Mimi wanted to find a sea-shell key chain as she is collecting of kinds of key chains.

On the ground floor, they sold the dried and wet food stuff. I notice they still sell turtles eggs. That was the first time Mimi saw turtles eggs. I told Mimi that these turtles eggs should not be sold anymore because they are now extinct. I wonder how the authority view this issue in Terengganu. Anyway I bought some keropok as Mimi wanted to have some.

By this time Kak Lang was a bit dizzy due to the heat so we had leave. On the way back, I was looking for a Cake shop as Kak Chik reminded me to a cake to surprise Taha (brother in law) to night. Believe me, it was easy to find a cake shop in K. Terengganu. We went round and round until I gave up searching. So we decided to head to lunch in Pantai Batu Burok.

After lunch and on the way back to Marang, we still put on our radar in search for a bakery shop. At last we saw one small bakery shop in one of the kampung. Aren't we glad that there is at least bakery shop in Terengganu.. heheh.. So we immediate bought one and head for the chalet to get ready for the Nikah ceremony.

By 4.00 pm, everybody was ready to go to the Masjid Tengku Tengah Zahrah or more popularly known as Masjid Terapung Kuala Ibai. Everybody dressed in shades blue.

After the Asar prayers was done, the Juru Nikah came and met us. The Nikah ceremony was to be done in the middle of the mosque. The hantaran was arranged nicely in a row.

Both Emma and Denise dressed in matching cream songket and satin. They looked brilliantly well but was a bit nervous though. Who won't when everyone was eyeing on both of them especially when the groom is a mat saleh. I was told that this is the first time ever a mat saleh wed a malay in the mosque. I don't know how far if its true.

Even our official photographer, Bob, invited his friends who is a journalist/photographer from Kosmo to cover the event. No wonder there more than 5 photographers were there clicking their shutterbugs but were strangers to us.

My brother-in-law did the Akad himself and was witness by my two eldest brothers. It was done in English. "I wed you with my daughter Rizaitul Emma Razali with RM50 cash". Dennis who had been practising it before but he forgot to say the RM50 cash. So it had to be done again. The second time, he calmly pronounced the whole sentence. Thus they now became lawfully husband and wife.

After all the legal documents were signed-off, the giving was "Mas Kahwin" and exchanging of rings was done.

We managed to group everybody around for the group photograph, which was quite hectic as it was not easy to everyone sitting still for a snap shot. We got some stares from people around us. Probably they were wondering what on us are these people doing here.....

Later we adjourned to the veranda for a simple tea. We were served by at least 6 varieties of local Terengganu delicacies. It was prepared by some my brother-in-law's staff based in K. Terengganu.

Below is the picture of the newly wed couple with both side of the family.

Surprise..surprise. Remember our official photographer? He arranged for a trishaw (beca) for the newly wed couple. Dennise cycle the trishaw while Emma in tow. He loves doing it but made everybody laughed. He even cycled around the lake while the photographers snapping their shots.

Day Two - Evening

We were a bit tired when we got back to the chalets. It was already 6pm then. But I took a rest for a while.

Did I tell you that there was no water supply in the chalet? The pressure was low and the supply didn't get into the main tank. Thus all the rooms were without water. It happen in the morning and we thought by the time we got back, the water supply was back. Unfortunately not. The only supply of water was from a pipe near the wakaf at the back of the chalet. So everybody was seen carrying buckets of water into their rooms. I wonder what these Dutch family of ours think about the water supply in Malaysia... hahaa..

After Magrhib we were ready for the next event. Barbecue cum dinner and also some games. I tell you, the food were plenty. Initially I thought it was only Nasi Ulam and Nasi Minyak plus the barbecue. The portion was so much that we can serve at least one hundred people. I already told my sister why is food too much that we can even serve the whole kampung folks. But that was not the end. Later my brother-in-law's staff brought another big portion of Laksam/Laksa and Nasi Dagang plus the left over kueh from the Masjid (after the Nikah). I tell you we could now served the whole of Marang people.

Earlier they brought a full tank of soya bean milk like the one you saw sold in the pasar malam. My sister arrange with somebody to send it to our chalet. It was so nice and that I have been drinking cups after cups of iced cold soya bean milk. (Now I regret it because I now had bad cough and my voice now croaking and I'm supposed to the MC at their reception in Seri Melayu).

We started off with Doa Selamat read by Abg Dak. Prayed that everything was fine. We were seated on mats arranged nice besides the chalet. My sister just want to do something different especially when some of our foreigners guests were around. Even the journarlist / photographers were around clicking away these unusual scene.

Abang, my eldest brother started burning the charcoal before marghib so that the charcoal will be nicely turned into ambers for the barbecue. The even barbecued the squids that they got the night before.

Once the tummy was filled, it was time for games. Their spirit was still high since they had played some games the day before. Everybody seems excited to play. As they were new comers i.e. Emma's Irish friends who just arrived from New Zealand this afternoon, I divided them into the already formed teams.

The first game was making "words out of a word". It simply making out other words using alphabets from a given words. For a start, I gave them the word "PERSIAPAN". From this word, they can rearrange the word and start making more word eg. siap, papan, siapa, etc. etc. It was fun when every trying to make as many words as possible within 5 minutes.

The Irish, Dutch and Indian now complaining as they didn't understand Malay. But there were surprise that I have already plan someting for them in English. Thus the next word was "EXAMINATION". Now they got no excuses for not playing. And this get everybody more excited. You know, all kinds of words you never heard of came out. What a laugh?

The next game was the Teka-Teki and also Riddles in English. See I prepared for them so that everybody will enjoy it. And of course, some of them came out with ridiculous answers.

See if you could answer these:

1. What is so fragile even saying its name can break it?
2. What 11-letter English word does everyone pronounce incorrectly?

Or the Malay teka-teki :

1. Apa dia kalau kita berjalan dia berjalan, kalau kita berhenti berjalan dia terus berjalan, tapi kalau dia berhenti jalan kita yang jalan?
Apa bezanya jatuh pokok kelapa dengan jatuh perigi?

Got the answers?? Hehehe.. I told you it was fun.

Next, we have "building a stucture by using only straws and musking tape" game. Everybody get the same no. of straw and the challenge is that they have to build a structure as highest as possible and it can at least stand by itself for at least 10 seconds.

Now it was fun seeing these people young and old so excited to get their highest stucture built up. Unfortunately some does last for 5 seconds and they collapse.

It was too much fun that we did noticing that it was already about 11.30pm. So it times for prize giving. I had earlier calculated all the scores and have already identified the winners. The prizes was all sponsored by the family members. It was only water tumblers, tooth brush and soap container, cheap watches, instant noodles, purse and many more. These prizes were not expensive but the excitement is worth more than it.

After all the team prizes were given away, there were still plenty of prizes. Thus we had to do the treasure hunt i.e. who ever got the things first that I mentioned will get the prize. It was hillarious seeing everybody searching for things so that they will win the prize.

But before we forget, it was a Taha's birthday (my younger brother-in-law). Luckily Kak Chik reminded me on that. I was too involved in the games and prize giving, I totally forgot about it. So Ija took the cake from my room and had everybody sang Happy Birthday for Taha.

It was already mid-night when the last prize was given away. So we took a group photograph.

The last agenda was playing fireworks at the beach. The kids were already excited and everybody headed for the beach. With fireworks exploded in the quiet mid-night, I hope it didn't wake up the kampung folks.

I was already tired by then. After the whole day affair, I was already up for a good night sleep.

Day 3 - 17 June 2007 (Sunday)

As usual, I am an early riser. Woke up by the sound of Azan from a nearby mosque. It was very calming sound of the muazzin calls for morning prayers.

By now the water supply is back as normal. After taking prayers, I went to help my sisters preparing the breakfast at the wakaf. And as expected, it was the left over of yesterday abundance food. The Nasi ulam and the Laksam was still good for breakfast. They make the nicest Laksam there. Somehow it tasted better than the Laksam I used to eat in KL.

I woke up Mimi and Acik asking them to go for their last dip in the sea before we go back. Their cousins were already playing in the water. Of course, they would wake up happily and got into their swimming suits and headed for the seas. How I wish their would do the same at home when I woke them up to go to school!!!!

By 10.30 am. we were prepared to leave Marang. Kak Chik & her family will only leave when they have settled everything there. Me and some of us left early. We do make some stop here and there to buy some lemangs and keropok lekor to take back. We reached home safely about 6.30 pm.

Now it's time to prepare for Emma's reception in Seri Melayu and Getah Asli this weekend. I hope my croaking voice will be ok by then for me to emcee the ceremony.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Busy preparing for the Terengganu trip

I have been busy preparing for the Terengganu trip. Emma (my niece) wanted to have her Akad Nikah ceremony at Masjid Terapung in Kuala Ibai, Kuala Terengganu. She had chosen a Dutch as her husband and wished to be solemnised there. The first question everybody asked was "Mengapa kat Terengganu? Kan kat sini banyak Masjid yang cantik-cantik." (Why in Terengganu? Isn't there many beautiful Mosques here.) My mom who is now 81, have been asking me for umpteen times "Mengapa nak Nikah kat sana?" And I always have a standard answer, "Entah lah mak, dia sukakan tempat tu". Yeah she has been asking me for at least 20 times since she heard about it.

But you got to know who is this niece of mine. She is an independent girl. Studied and work in Ireland since at least the last 7 years. Came back once every 2 years. Loves backpacking. She has been travelling to places I don't even know how to pronounce. Only came back last year to continue her Professional Accounting degree here.

I believe that he met Dennis, a Dutch, who also loves back packing, in Bangkok. I guess the cupids have struck their hearts and now planned to get married this weekend. Dennis converted to Islam a few months back. Alhamdullilah.

Emma told me that they saw Masjid Terapung Kuala Ibai (The Floating Mosque) while they were there for scuba diving in one of the islands. And they got mesmerised by it. Who knows maybe ALLAH opens Dennis's heart (now called Danniel after converted) to embrace Islam. So Emma & Danniel will be solemnised this Saturday. She and her father had made arrangements for the Akad Nikah there.

So as the Chairman cum Organiser, I have arranged with my sisters and brothers to make our trip there more eventful. So it's not only the Nikah but we also organise some beach games, shopping, jalan-jalan cari makan, and some even suggested "candat sotong" i.e. squid jigging.

Thus we have organised of our stay in 2 chalets i.e. Impiana Rumuda and Marang Guest House (since they cannot accommodate the 50 of us in one place). Macam rombongan Che Kiah jer!!! And I have been preparing the details of the games, prizes, the maps for those who have not been to that part of the world, accommodation arrangements, etc., etc.

I called Emma this morning. She is now in Taman Negara and about to leave for Kuantan and later heading to Marang. Her in-laws-to-be were here since last Friday and she has been taking her around. The rest of her family is driving to Marang today too.

So tomorrow we will gather at my mom's place and shall leave by 9.00 am. Hope to update you guys when I come back. Syok nyer cuti......