The drive there took us almost 5 hours. Nasib baik I wasn’t driving. We had a driver booked for the trip, but still, sitting in the car for a two to three hours stretch was still somewhat an agony. Sakit sagala sendi-sendi di dalam badan, almaklum lah…di usia yang sebegini....errr “muda”.
As there were no nearby hotels, we put up at a homestay place in the Felda scheme. I was very, very skeptical with this arrangement in the beginning. I never like sleeping at other people’s house, well other than Mom’s of course. Even at MIL’s pun, I’d make all sorts of excuses to not do so. So this homestay adventure was going to be my first “sleep-over-at-another-person’s” home stint after the last one which I could no longer recall when. Takpe lah I told myself, if others could go through it, I was pretty sure I could too (sambil keeping my fingers crossed all the time)
Program participants practising the theme song - Our Children Our Future
That evening after we rejoined with the team which was already in Felda Air Tawar 5, we went over to Pantai Telok Mahkota in Tanjung Sedeli. Apparently this place was known as Jesson Bay last time, and this was going to be the AKOK site. Nothing much was seen at the site. Well the program wasn’t going to start till Saturday anyway. Unlike in the city, folks in the kampong area was very calm, no rush, no harsh sounds from motor vehicles of what sort. I asked myself if I could survive in such an environment. Well, my guess is, max I’d give myself a week. After that I was sure I’d be terlenting-lenting wanting to return to the concrete jungle.
Jesson Bay @ Tanjung Sedeli
That night we drove all the way to Tanjung Kapal for dinner. The restaurant offered us a spectacular view of cargo ships waiting in queue to unload at Pasir Gudang Port. Service was slow but he food was good at the restaurant – de Kapal, located a few km after the Sungai Rengit fisherman village.
The home where we stayed...all in all there were 7 rooms in the house
Spacious and well kept garden
We headed back to our homestay after that. This was it, my moment of truth was getting closer. When we got to the place….ahhhhh…all my worries flew out the window. The house which belong to Mak Sam and Pak Mail was beautiful, and it offered such a comfort. There was even a hot water heater in the bathroom. Ohhh thank you..thank you!!! Dalam kepala dah fikir dah, if tak de, hai terpaksa lah mintak permission nak boil water in the morning in order to have my bath. Urrgggg…tak ke mengundang soalan-soalan cupumas nanti.
Fruits from the garden - pulasan
the purple mangosteen
We were served dinner again when we arrived at Mak Sam’s house. Hai..dah kenyang but terpaksa makan jugak. Kena lah jaga hati tuan rumah kan. As we sat having dinner, we heard the soft ”boom” sound. One of my girls said, “Haa…itu durian gugur!!!” Ayoooo…got durian dusun lagi at the homestay!!! No wonder lah when we entered the house, I detected the “pleasant” aroma. Musim buah rupanya and the couple had all sorts of fruit trees planted in their backyard. Mak Sam said they have mangosteen, pulasan, rambutans and not forgetting the durians.
That night after our second dinner, the team dijamu with durians. Me?? I had to politely excuse myself, saying that I don’t eat durians. With that declaration, I received weird stares from everyone else.
Zapin pembuka acara
YB giving a speech
At tea, kueh abok (if I heard the name well) and Kopi-O...fuhh terangkat
My team and I were busy the following day preparing for the closing event. Come what may, the show had to go on. I was happy that everything went well that day. There were dark clouds indicating that it was going to pour. Fortunately, those clouds moved away and it remained dry till the event ended.
The loving couple..Mak Sam & Pak Mail... (she calls him "yang" adussss.....)
Thank you…thank you from the bottom of our hearts.