Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Ohhh...What a Gathering!!!

It all started with Muni bumping into Aunty Salmah in Subang Parade one Saturday during the fasting month. Aunty Salmah and her husband Uncle Mohd Noor were our parents angkat when we were studing in UW - Madison back in the 80s. It has been a while since we last met.

Raya...they say, is the time to rapatkan yang jauh and yang lama tidak berjumpa. So the date was set for Sunday 28 November 2007 for us Muni, Jupe & I and our families, the 3 anak angkat to go visit Aunty and Uncle in their house in Taman Tun Dr Ismail. Aunty Salmah also pesan to invite other friends yang kenal. Not a problem..and Muni sent out sms to our other friends. However, with Raya open houses still "hot", coupled with wedding invitations flying around, some friends had to excuse themselves.

"Tak pe lah...kita-kita aje.." I told Muni when she said only the few of us could make it to Aunty's place.

I was the last to arrive at Aunty's place that Sunday afternoon. Aunty Salmah who was as radiant as she has always been greeted us at the door. Then came Uncle Mohd Noor...his usual jovial and friendly.

I headed towards the dining table and..there was Nawal & Rohaya!!! Gosh...we haven't met for ages. Nawal looks still the graceful. And Rohaya pun nampak sama jugak since last we met.

The afternoon was spent eating the delicious food Aunty (or was it by Chef Shahril??) had prepared. Uncle showed his collection of pictures from those days in the US. All neatly labelled and well organised in his photo albums.

We reminisced those days in UW - Madison. The conversation went this way.."Oh...ingat tak Aunty so and so and Uncle so and so....their cucu dah...." We would update them pulak with stories of friends we know.... "Oh...kak so and so...married so and so..and got anak...." Bercerita sampai tak ingat petang..heh..heh :-))

Uncle Mohd Noor in blue and Aunty Salmah in red kurung, surrounded by us the anak-anak angkat.
From left Jupe, Me, Dolah (Muni's hubby), Uncle Mohd Noor, Aunty Salmah, Rohaya, Nawal, ABE and seated in pink, Muni.

Tha..da....this is a real classic picture. Rummaged through my old UW album and found this. Our 1st raya in Madison. Guess la who's who?? shy to identify ourselves. We were many, many sizes smaller back then!!!

But most of all, I (and I know my other friends feel the same way as I do too) am glad so see both Aunty and Uncle so loving, so ceria and are still their good ole selves and are now Toks to their 6 beautiful grand children.

And..from the looks on their faces, they are surely enjoying every single minute of it!!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

2nd Try - Slide show

Tried putting this picture slide sometime back but it didn't work. Finally today....percubaan berjaya :-)

Monday, October 29, 2007

Where's REAL Kampung?

Where's our REAL kampung?? You know...those with traditional wooden kampung houses and fruit trees, sawah bendangs, river streams and chickens running around.

Both ABE's and mine are in....KUALA PILAH (KP) lah where else. Actually this is where our parents are from. Lucky us coz we still have Pak Ngahs, Mak Langs and Mak Ciks who live in the traditional kampungs.

On the first day of Raya we went back to both our kampungs. ABE's in Sri Menanti and mine in Juasseh. Ooooo...where on earth is that?? Well, Sri Menanti is the royal town of the Yang Di Pertuan Besar of Negeri Sembilan (and there's a golf course there as well!!!) while Juasseh is a small kampung one would pass on the way to Bahau.

My late father's kampung house

Driving along the state road to Kuala Pilah for Raya these days is so different from the times when I was a little girl way back in the 70's. Today, the road is swampped with cars bearing out of town plat numbers. Nampak nyer ramai dah orang Pilah yang dah berhijrah ke luar KP :-)

Cars lined in the crawl up Bukit Putus

This was how slow we had to drive in the jam up Bukit Putus.

Like Raya of the previous years, there would always be a traffic jam on the second day of Raya. A jam as long at 5 - 6 kms if one is not lucky. This year there was even an announcement on the radio about the jam in KP. When I heard that..I couldn't help but say..."yah, that's my kampung alrite".

Way to go orghang Sonanti, Jomapuh, Tanjung Ipoh and Toghrachi...moh kito balik Pilah rghamai-rghamai...

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Finally the Sun's Out

After many days of rain and gloomy skies...the sun showed itself this morning. Let's hope it stays bright and dry till the end of the day today.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

More Rain on Wednesday

And it rained some more today.....
As expected, roads were lined with cars.

Rainy Tuesday

More rain came our way on Tuesday. The sun didn't even make its appearance. What a wet, wet day.....

Putrajaya 23102007 @1.20pm

Gloomy skies over Putrajaya.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Rainy Days and Mondays

For folks who took off the whole of last week to cuti raya, today’s their 1st day back at work. The weather however, had other plans. It had this in store for most of us city folk drivers….RAIN and lots of it!!

The view out of my bedroom window was so dark and gloomy this morning. Two things played on my mind….should I venture the rain and be stucked in a traffic jam on the way to work …or should I wait and leave until the office rush is cleared. The wiser of me decided to pick the later.

So…I didn’t bother to leave home till it was almost 8.45am. Sent Nissa to school and pumped petrol into my car and then only headed to work. Pheww….what a breather…the road to work was OK. Heard on the radio that most roads into the city were jammed. A normal thing one would have to encounter when it rains in KL.

It’s back to reality I guess. After all the celebrations, all the ketupat lemang, it’s back to deadlines, submissions and meetings. It’s gonna be a long week this week.... that’s for sure :-((

Perhaps this song from the Carpenters best describes the feelings for today…

Hangin' around
Nothing to do but frown
Rainy Days and Mondays always get me down

Sunday, October 14, 2007

One for the Album

All smiles for the Raya album.....

A photo shoot of the family.

Mom, my sister and children and me and the family.

Mom, my sister Shamilah & me.

My sister Shamilah, hubby and her two boys.

Faris control macho...and check out how the samping is tied...beranak kaw-kaw!!!

Finally, a candid of ABE catching a nap.

Let's Balik Kampung!!

It's Hari Raya!!! And let's balik kampung!!!

What would Raya be if it's not going back to one's hometown to celebrate with family and friends. Eidul Fitri this year falls on Saturday 13th October 2007. For folks who are in the city, many had headed for their hometowns even as early as Wednesday.

Festive decorations on the road to Mom's place.

So...where is the "Kampung"??'s Seremban, a small town about 1 hour drive to the south of KL. Yup...I am a Negri girl and proud of it. When I tell friends that I am from Negri Sembilan, some of them go "Aaaa....orang negeri....adat pepatih...where girls get to keep ALL the harta." Alah...whatever thing for sure, I don't have to spend many, many hours for my journey back.

My kids were excited to go back to meet up with their cousins. And for me, I was excited to be home at Mom's place. There would be plenty of yummy food and I could take some time out to rest as well. I don't know what's with our family home....but I sure am able to get a good rest here. I sleep better here all the time. Maybe it's because I am more relaxed...the mind is more at peace, hence the sleep is more peaceful.

We left Shah Alam that Friday afternoon. Traffic was good. It took us only 1 hour to get to my Mom's place. On the way, we stopped to get some lemang, a must have delicacy for Raya.

Mom had made chicken & beef rendang. With the help of Bibik, I had prepared serunding and kuah kacang at home. We had a good buka puasa that evening. The dinner table was full with stuffs to eat. The kids had a real good time enjoying the good food....after all Eidul Fitri only comes once a year.

Later that night, the folks from the nearby surau came and did takbir at our house. There were more children than adults. Mom had a surprise for the children. She served them ice-cream. Ha..hah...that was quite some treat for them. Something different from the usual lemang, ketupat & kuah kacang.

Folks who came takbir at the house. ice-cream in this house lah...

We slept late that night. Have to conserve some energy for the next day coz we'd be visiting more relatives at the Kampung.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

It's EIDUL FITRI today

After a month of fasting, we celebrate EIDUL FITIR today. EIDUL FITRI is celebrated on the first day of Shawal, at the completion of Ramadan.

The Eidul Fitri is a very joyous day. It is a true Thanksgiving Day for all Muslims. On this day Muslims show their real joy for the health, strength and the opportunities of life, which Allah has given to them to fulfill their obligation of fasting and other good deeds during the blessed month of Ramadan.