I called up Nazri to find out if he was in town for Eid and discovered that a bunch of folks from school were. There was a plan to meet up later that night at Aeon, at a chicken wing restaurant that I never went to before. Before long, Shahmar, Nazri, Sam and I had assembled there to talk of old times and new. Because the meet up went into extra time, the wives and children (including Ain and Irfan) went for a showing of Hotel Transylvania 2. We had to vacate the premises and relocate to the nasi kandar restaurant outside the mall to continue, where we were later joined by Din.
All in all, it was an enjoyable time meeting childhood buddies.
Selamat Hari Raya Aidil Adha from us in Sitiawan.
Rassum frassum haze...
And just like that, our once-newborn son is a teenager. As Irfan is so fond of reciting, "Masa berjalan begitu saja." Although Atok and Opah had treated us to an early birthday dinner with Irfan back in Sitiawan, we went to Burger Republik once more to commemorate the day.
From the urban inner city streets of Pandan Indah (which we rarely allow him to be on unsupervised) to the more relaxed conditions of Perlis! Happy birthday and may you continue to grow and burgeon with wisdom and positivity.
His birthday present, by the way, is a book.
Fiction is how ideas can be put forward to make one think. I use many methods to help develop Irfan's thinking skills - although I have no clue if they work efficiently.
A lot of fiction for children, when they involve conflict will usually gravitate to an environment with two sides: the right side and the wrong side. You know the cartoon shows. The bad guys make life difficult for the good guys, and the good guys have to surmount this difficulty to achieve some measure of victory.
Mobile Suit Gundam 00 however has a number of sides. Each side has those with a moral conscience and those who are assholes. Even the side that the protagonists are on has factions that are morally reprehensible. So I hope the lesson taught is not to see the person for his uniform or the colour of his skin, but to his intentions and especially his deeds.
And if there is need to act for the betterment of society and mankind, we should.
Meanwhile, Irfan used some of his saved up pocket money (and food sales earnings - a whole another story) over a couple of months to buy the Exia and Dynames Gundams from Double Zero.
Exia is piloted by Suran Ibrahim. Dynames is piloted by Neil Dylandy, then later Lyle Dylandy.
Thanks to some tinkering around, he created an Exia-Dynames hybrid Gundam for some sort of nefarious reason.
It's been some time since I mentioned the haze on this blog. The last time I did it was 10 years ago.
In any case, the haze has returned as it is wont to do year upon year upon year. This time it returned with even more of a vengeance than the last. It's been weeks and the haze does not seem to be going away soon. It cast a murky shade of gray upon everything in Kuala Lumpur during the graduation weekend. The environs of The Mall near the PWTC - now upgraded and renamed Sunway Putra Mall - is thick with the stuff, like heavy mist except for the strong omnipresent smell and taste of smoke.
Maybe I should have just gotten the university to send me my degree by mail.
The day we headed back to Sitiawan, the haze seemed to be even worse. The view below showed how the PLUS Highway looked like upon passing the Jalan Duta toll plaza, heading out of the city.
The view along the LATAR Highway is usually a pleasant shade of green and blue.
It was apparent that the haze would not let up even as we passed Sungai Besar and approached Perak.
I can't wait to get back to Perlis, which is further north, where the chances of haze-smothering is lower than the rest of the country.
It is nearly impossible for me to form the words to explain and describe the experience of graduating from college with a Bachelor Degree in English Studies at age 42, on top of the multitude of experiences positive and negative I underwent in the last 25 years or so. I know I prefer to harp on the negative, but on the whole it has been gratifying. After all is said and done, I guess here and now having the family, friends and tools that I possess is where I am actually supposed to be.
A big thanks to everyone that pushed me in this direction.
So, I drew some cross-species hybridization as Star Trek aliens are wont to do. For example, Spock is a Human-Vulcan hybrid and K’Ehleyr is a Human-Klingon hybrid.
A Tholian-Vulcan hybrid! I only remembered the pointy eyebrows after I finished drawing.
A Horta-Cardassian hybrid. No space beneath the silicon-based body for a Gul Macet-style mutton chops. And think of the amount of hairspray needed to keep that 'do in shape.
A Tribble-Andorian hybrid. How is this even- I- Never mind. Everyone go home. Nothing to see here.
Irfan got a present from his aunt last weekend when two aunts visited. He got this great t-shirt filled with droids. There's everything from the demolitions droid, some astromech droids, battle droids, a power droid to protocol droids. But there is no Bollux and Blue Max, sadly.
So I too wore a t-shirt with a droid on it and took a photo of us. So we would have a photo. Of both of us wearing t-shirts. Of droids.
After a week or so of having no office while hardware transportation was being carried out, I have finally moved into the new new office out in the boonies.
It is a bit warmer than the old new ofice, but I do get fresh air. But only if I open the window. And only if there is no life-choking haze from the evil Malaysian agricorps burning the Indonesian jungles across the strait.