Bubbles, she is the joy and the laughter

Aidiladha 2012 In Pasir Mas

This year for Aidiladha, we travelled to Pasir Mas for the holidays. However, instead of driving with our own car, we hitched a ride with Irfan’s aunt Cik Emma’s. We left home at 5am. Despite that, it took us 14 hours to reach Pasir Mas via the Gua Musang route. There were horrible traffic jams in nearly every town en route because of the holiday season. There was even one instance where we didn’t move out in the middle of nowhere – well, Bukit Tujuh, – for 30 minutes that other drivers left their cars to stretch their legs. But it’s all good because as you can see above, there was ice cream in Gua Musang. Because it was Hari Raya Korban, many cattle and goats were felled and converted into delicious, delicious consumables. So when we visited relatives, we had nothing a lot of delicious, delicious beef. Irfan busied […]

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Irfan with Ascension cards

Ascension: Chronicles of the Balik Kampung

So, just before Eid, Ivan came around and gave us another gaming gift. This time it’s the deck-building card game Ascension: Chronicles of the Godslayer by Gary Games. We brought it back with us to Sitiawan for some gaming. Extradimensional demonic monsters are passing through interdimensional barriers into the world of Vigil. And it’s up to players to build their decks and employ their cards to kick the monsters in the butt, and win by gaining the most Honor points! Sometimes, my hand is usually full of the guys in the following photo. They only have Rune points which does me no good when confronted with the bad guy-fulled centre array which looks like the last photo in this blog entry. I keep getting dealt into these situations. Strangely, when my hand is full of Power cards, the centre array is inexplicably filled with Heroes and Constructs. Irfan and I […]

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The Renstroms appear onscreen

Salam Aidilfitri from Sitiawan

This year we spent Eid-ul-Fitr in Sitiawan. Here’s a photo of everyone during Eid morning. Then later that night, we had guests over the internet in the form of the Renstroms. Yaya and Adik also joined the fun. Adik wanted to crawl through the computer screen to join us, but Yaya held him back. EID MUBARAK!

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Salam Aidilfitri from Ohio

Eid Mubarak and Selamat Hari Raya, maaf zahir dan batin from us all! [[image:2012_eid_yayaadik03.jpg:Siblings’ first raya together:center:0]] [[image:2012_eid_yayaadik04.jpg:Hey, what happened to my feet?:center:0]] [[image:2012_eid_yayaadik02.jpg:Singing Raya songs or asking for duit raya?:center:0]] [[image:2012_eid_yayaadik05.jpg:Love Kak Yaya:center:0]] [[image:2012_eid_yayaadik01.jpg:Eid Mubarak y’alls!:center:0]] Missing all the family and friends in Malaysia. Also the ketupat and rendang. ūüėČ

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Aidiladha 2011: Back To Sitiawan

This Aidil Adha we drove back to Sitiawan. As per standard operating procedures, we took a family photo Aidiadha morning, before heading out to visit others. [[image:aidiladha-2011-01.jpg:All who were present at Aidil Adha 2011:center:0]] I love this photo of Irfan on the wooden pier by the river. I should have waited 30 seconds later, because by the time I stowed the camera, a little boat went by with a happy-looking bunch of children. Here follows a selection of photos of our time in Sitiawan. [[image:aidiladha-2011-02.jpg:Behind Opah Long’s house at Kampung Permatang:center:0]] [[image:aidiladha-2011-03.jpg:Irfan and Opah:center:0]] [[image:aidiladha-2011-04.jpg:Huorns! Huorns on the loose!:center:0]] [[image:aidiladha-2011-05.jpg:Beachcombing at Lumut:center:0]]¬† [[image:aidiladha-2011-06.jpg:The Lumut Naval Base can be seen in the back:center:0]] We didn’t stop to have ABC at the Lumut Promenade though. Eid Mubarak everyone.

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Salam Aidilfitri from… uh, Ipoh?

That weekend we tagged along Abang Ngah’s engagement convoy from Kampung Permatang all the way to Ipoh, or more precisely near Simpang Pulai. As usual the adventuring party that was formed by the family was a fun and boisterous one – despite the inordinately hot day we had. [[image:aidilfitri-2011-ipoh-01.jpg:Atok and Opah at the kenduri:center:0]] One thing’s for sure: the food prepared by the other family was very delicious. [[image:aidilfitri-2011-ipoh-02.jpg:Negotiations:center:0]] The adults negotiate the terms of the future wedding as the rest of us kids play. [[image:aidilfitri-2011-ipoh-03.jpg:Abang Ngah and fiancee:center:0]] Abang Ngah and his fiancee posed for photographers after the negotiations are done. [[image:aidilfitri-2011-ipoh-04.jpg::center:0]] Abang Ngah’s brother Abang Long with his younger son awaits outside. Once upon a time, Abang Long’s wedding was also featured in this blog!

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Best ABC This Side of the Euphrates

When we balik kampung to Sitiawan, we try to drop by at Ain’s favourite ais batu campur (ABC) restaurant, which just happens to be at the Lumut Esplanade, overlooking where the Dindings River meets the sea. Most times we arrive, there is an festival-like air to the area which has a food court by the water as well as a children’s playground. Anyways, here’s the ABC: [[image:aidilfitri-2011-abc-01.jpg:ABC:center:0]] That evening, there was a TLDM (Royal Malaysian Navy) warship docked right in front of the food court. [[image:aidilfitri-2011-abc-02.jpg:Some warship:center:0]] Alas, we did not have a lot of time. So, we only had the ABC. [[image:aidilfitri-2011-abc-03.jpg:This photo is here because Ain looks so pretty in this shot:center:0]]

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Yay rain

Salam Aidilfitri from Pasir Mas

This year it’s balik kampung to Pasir Mas for Aidilfitri! And for the first time ever, we flew to Kota Bharu. Why did we fly there? Cause I don’t think the car can survive an 8 hour cross-country trip. Heck, it can barely survive a trip to Sungai Buloh. Here is our only family photo taken for the celebration. We had so many visitors the first two days there was no time to take photos. Cars upon cars upon cars arrived in no time! A couple of days earlier: Irfan had fun on the porch during the rain. We watched pelepah nyor and stuff fell as the rainstorm did its work. When it wasn’t raining, Irfan performed his favourite chore: raking leaves from the yard. Back to Hari Raya: Thanks to technology stolen from the future during a time travel jaunt, everyone could speak to and see Irfan’s Cik Su […]

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Mak Lan, myself and Yaya

Lunch with Mak Lan

It has been a while since we last saw Mak Lan – she is Vin’s “foster mother” and our long-time neighbor and friend in Sitiawan. She and her late husband have been my parents friends longer than Hisham and I have been alive, and Mak Lan and Abah Lan played the part of the groom’s family at my wedding, even preparing hantarans (traditional wedding gifts) and playing the part of Vin’s family to menghantar (send) Vin to our place at our wedding. However these past few years, Mak Lan has been living in KL. So we arranged to have lunch at Mak Lan’s place in KL on the last day we’re in Malaysia. It has been too too long, and so good to see Mak Lan again! Mak Lan had prepared nasi beriani, ayam masak merah, jelatah and other yumminess. We spent the time just hanging out, talking and catching […]

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Six Degrees of Separation of Old Friends

After years of not being together again, Zarin, Ida and I finally managed a meet up. Last time I saw Ida was at my wedding (that’s over 5 years ago!). And look, Ida’s about to have a baby! Apparently 3 different doctors independently of each other confirmed it will be a girl. The only person missing from this picture is Restu. The four of us Animalies have not been on the same continent together since, probably, 1998. Ah well! One day! ūüôā [[image:2010-sept-friends01.jpg:Me, Ida & Zarin:center:0]] If you want to know what “animaly” means, well, you had to be there in 1993 *arf!*. * Mouse over the pictures for more captions After adjourning from the Nando’s at Alamanda, we then went to a donut place for dessert (I forgot the name lah.. Zarin remind me again?), and to kill time until Hisham and his family could take us to Eliza’s […]

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Here's cousin Irfan!

Journey to Taiping and Ipoh

The journey began on the morning of the 12th of September. The planned route would have taken us from Sitiawan, up north toward Taiping to two houses, Opah Teh and Tok Teh’s in Matang and Pak Unggai and Mak Unggai’s in Taiping. Then, we’d drive south-east using the North-South Highway toward state capital of Ipoh, to Wan Cu’s new abode. Just three houses to visit for the day. By normal reckoning, it would take us an hour to get to Taiping, then another hour to get to Ipoh, and finally another hour to get back to Sitiawan. If we spent 30 minutes per house visit, we would be back before it was late afternoon. Little did we know… Before we began our journey, we stopped for supplies at the local Giant hypermarket. It’s still weird to think of having a Giant hypermarket in little Sitiwan. Of course, Sitiawan is no […]

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Yati Comes a-Calling

On the fifth day of Aidilfitri (September 14th), my old friend Yati stopped by for a quick Hari Raya visit: [[image:2010-sept-yati04.jpg:Onyang Yati:center:0]] It had been a while since I last saw Yati, and it was really good to see her again, and also to see her husband Zukry, and to meet their beautiful daughter Fatihah: [[image:2010-sept-yati01.jpg:Zukry and Fatihah:center:0]]¬† Yati brought some mini-cheesecakes (or cheese-tarts) for all to enjoy. Does this make her the Queen of Hearts? [[image:2010-sept-yati02.jpg:Irfan, Yati and Opah checking out the tarts:center:0]]¬† The kids got along famously: [[image:2010-sept-yati03.jpg:Hands up, Irfan!:center:0]]¬† [[image:2010-sept-yati05.jpg:Yaya plays congkak:center:0]]¬† Yati was obsessed with trying to fix Yaya’s hair. After about thirty minutes and about a million tries, Yaya finally acquiesces and allows her hair to be ponytailed (for all of about 3-4 minutes, but that’s ok). Yati was so involved in fixing Yaya’s hair that Fatihah, that sweet little daughter of Yati’s actually told […]

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Guess Hoos Coming to Raya?

On the second day of Aidilfitri (September 11th), the Meis and their family came for a visit. By family we mean Mei Lin, Mei Chin, their husbands, their daughters, their parents, and their little brother Colin-boy. Hoo did you expect? ūüėČ [[image:2010-sept-hoos01.jpg:Me and Yaya, and Mei and Immie:center:0]] Hisham and I had to decide which of us would actually write this entry (since Mei Lin was his classmate and Mei Chin was mine). But here’s my take on the day! * Mouse over the pictures for captions Mak had made chicken curry to eat with roti jala for the guests (mmm mmmmmm!) since we had basically polished off the rendang from the first day of Aidilfitri. What can I say, I haven’t seen my mother’s rendang in a while, and coupled with ketupat and lemang, I just could not resist. Nor did I. Not to mention Yong’s righteous nasi dagang! […]

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That piano needs to be repaired

Young Book Readers during Eid

The most awesome thing which was agreed upon by everyone was that Irfan and Alya were friends almost from the get go. Even when Alya was grumpy, badly affected by jet lag, she will more often than not smile or even laugh whenever Irfan came around to cheer her up. Once she even climbed onto Irfan’s bed to wake him up in the morning: Later that day, they both did something which was not planned at all. Irfan started reading for his little cousin as they sat together on their grandparents’ couch. At first, they both flipped through a Reader’s Digest magazine and a book Ayah Cik was reading at the time: Alya was fascinated with photos of cats in the Reader’s Digest. Irfan also checked out the pictures sitting at her side: Then Irfan remembered the children’s books Cik Dik bought for him as presents, so he rushed to […]

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