Sunday, December 28, 2008

Shopping phrases

During the recent shopping trip to Swindon and London, several phrases were uttered quite frequently that they became sort of private jokes. On such phrase is, "shopping macam tak ingat akhirat."

That phrase is targeted to both the shoppers that I saw, and most important to myself. I saw people in droves 'taking advantage' of the sales to rack up armfuls of shopping items. As for myself, at the end of the Swindon trip, I realised that I've met about 60% of my target expenditure. The thing was, I made a list of items to buy, but I bought things that are NOT in the list. I hope none of the items that I bought are wasteful. Some of them are for folks at home. Some are for health improvements. And I'll admit that some of them are for ego boosts (like the Gucci EDT from Harrods). See, I did a name dropping just to boost my ego. *evil grin*

One thing that I finaly managed to buy was a pair of leather shoes from Clarks. I've been looking at Mansfield, Loughborough, Swindon, Chester, and so on for a pair that suits me. Finally I found one at Oxford Street. The pair feels comfortable, not too snug at its widest opening. The styling does not meet my expectation 100%, but it was a trade off that I was willing to make. Silently, I said - another shopping phrase - to myself, "ambik je lah".

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Day surprise

The birth of Jesus is described in the Qur'an. His birth is supposed to strengthen our faith in Allah, the Creator. He can make a woman pregnant without ever being touched by a man. And He made a newborn baby talk in defence of his mother. He is indeed All Powerful. Everything that happens happen by His will.

On this Christmas day, I got my own surprise. And I hope the surprise strengthened my dependence on Him. Without Him, I would never be able to see your face again. I was surprised to the point of not being able to create any plan to maximise the opportunity He had given to me. Looking at your face - smiling, and healthy - was more than I could have hoped for on this day. I showed you the train and the books that I'll bring home and give you.

Hopefully, there will be more times like this when we can see face to face. I pray for un giorno por noi. My dear, I love you. Ku ingin selalu di sampingmu.

Weekend in Birmingham

Instead of wallowing in negative feelings, I chose to be happy. I decided to be happy in Birmingham. Alhamdulillah, Zul was free at that time, and was willing to take me onboard. I drove to Birm on Friday evening.

I arrived in Birm after 4pm. I went to the Bullring to find something for the Zul's friend's newborn baby. I found a Jasper Conran jumper suit on sale. On the way to Zul's flat, I was stuck in a traffic jam. The journey that was supposed to take 5 minutes took more than 20 minutes. However, I managed to make it on time for the trip to Worcester.

In Worcester, Sam treated us to dinner before we get to see his little princess. The battered prawn was excellent. It was a good thing that I've started eating prawn again. So far, there's no negative effects from the prawns. Later, we met Marissa Zahra who was sleeping soundly.

There's nothing quite a stress-buster as looking at a baby's face. You just can melt into their face. So peaceful. So innocent.

On the way back, Ivan, Zul's flatmate, suggested live singing in lieu of the songs on CD. I've been itching to 'punish' my vocal cords, so I was not hesitant to belt out a few Malay songs. In turn, we were treated to some Slovakian folk songs. Ivan's voice is great. I wish he would sing a song in full.

The next day, we went to Bicester Village Designer Outlet. I was surprised to see Dunhil, JImmy Choo and FCUK in the Village. I've never seen them in other Designer Outlet that I've been to. And the Village itself was very nice. Alas, the items on 'sale' were not within my budget. The closest that I came to buying was a Fcuk belt, on sale for GBP13. So, I left the village without buying a single thing.

On the way back, we stopped at Warwick. We visited an old house, and I got to try on a soldier's jacket. Then we went around Warwick Castle. During sumer time, insyaAllah I will visit this castle again.
















On Sunday, the activity was markedly different. Zul wanted to check out Clent Hill that was suggested to him by his gym instructor. I was wearing my Bata work shoes. But it did not deter me from joining him hiking up the hill. It was very nice. The weather was just nice for hiking. Sometimes we were chatting away. Sometimes we went quiet, enjoying the silence. All in all, it summed up to me being content. And that's what's important.













Implicit facts about Superman

The man from Krypton is well known on Earth. But there are some facts that are hidden from public awareness. Here are some examples.

1) Either his hair stop growing, or he can control the length of his hair at will. Because no worldly materials can harm him, there is no way that he can get a hair cut at the local barber.

2) He never had immunisation when he was growing up. If bullets can't pierce through his skin, what can a needle do?

3) For the same reason as above, he is not circumsized.

Favorite music


The Moldau - Smetana

This is one of my favorite classical music. It was described as a 'poetic' composition. Perhaps that's why I like it so much. The build up towards the crescendo just tugs at my heart. Kalau dapat dengar live performance sure best.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Kereta oh kereta

Bulan ni, banyak jugak duit yang mengalir disebabkan kereta. Kereta yang melebihi umur 3 tahun wajib ujian MOT (macam Puspakom) setiap tahun. Sekali ujian kena GBP53. Result: GAGAL. Hampeh. Ada part yang perlu diganti sebab dah haus. Kalau setakat pat lima pound tu ok la. Ni satu part je dah 90 pound. Nak (amaran: literal translation) menggosok garam ke luka, upah pasang lebih mahal dari harga parts. Hampeh kuasa dua.

Nak dijadikan cerita, untuk pasang parts tu, tayar perlu ditanggalkan. Mekanik tu tak boleh nak tanggal tayar, sebab berkunci. Tak pernah tau la pulak tayar pun ada kunci. Rupa2nya, salah satu nut bagi setiap tayar adalah nut kunci. Kena ada anak kuncinya. Which I don't have.  So, kena pergi BMW Specialist. Charge utk bukak 4 nuts: GBP70. Hampeh kuasa tiga. Boleh anemik jadinya bila kena charges cekik darah macam ni. Nasib baik la dah reserve duit untuk hal2 berkaitan kereta.

So, moral of the story: reserve la duit banyak2 kalau nak berBMW.  


Re-tagged

1. Do you think you are hot?

No. Suam-suam kuku je. Handsome, but not hot.

2. Upload a favorite picture of you:




3. Why do you like that picture?

Because it actually shows me expressing some emotions. Some people told me that I don't show emotions enough. Emosi kerut dahi je yg selalu nampak. So, that's why I like this picture: me with the glow of hope.

 

4. When was the last time you ate pizza?

 

About two months ago. I ordered two pizza (buy 1, get 1 free) from Dominics. It took me about three days to finish them.


5. The song you listened to?

I Know How the River Feels – Diamond Rio.

6. What are you doing right now besides this?

Emailing people regarding my ethics application for my PhD project.


7. What other names do you prefer besides this?
Pak Alang. Sir Hales (for playing computer games) - try to pronouce this name with a Chinese accent.

Now I would like to tag new victims to do it

 1. Puan Telipuk
2. Pn Janji Si Muda Lela
3. Cik Mastikus Behind the Yellow Line
4. En Naohito
5. Pn Aida Quswa

8. Who is number 1?
Someone who once wrote that I looked like a Panglima Harimau Berantai. We met during Program Titian Emas when we were in secondary school. When we entered university - she was at UUM, I was in Canada - we lost contact. (yea la... dedulu mana ada email) I think, this year she discovered my, blog; then I hers. Since then we have keep in touch through each other’s blog. She writes beautifully as well. When she has her nostalgic moments, terserlah kemelayuannya. 

9. Who is number 3 having a relationship with?
Dunno. I don’t know who her kunci is. But I know she has her own band. She had written one song, and lyrics for two songs.

10. Say something about number 5.

She is my cousin on my father’s side. A graduate of UUM. She has her own blog, with pictures of food that make me hungry. Her husband also has a Nikon D80 like me. She has two lovely kids. 

11. What about number 4?

He is my friend, working in KL. He graduated from Japan. He is a very busy person. His blog has been bersawang for quite some time now. Hehehe… that’s why I tagged him; so that he has something to update his blog.

12. Who is number 2?

She is my cousin, also from my father’s side. (I don’t know any cousin from my mother’s side who has a blog). She’s a gifted writer, a winner of several literature awards, and not afraid of being different. She’s inflicting a Permanent Head Damage to herself. Mari kita lihat… siapa yang 'damaged' dulu. Hehehe.

search suggested

Google is successful in part due to its ability to help users find what they are looking for. If a search term used by the user does not produce good results, Google offers alternative. However, this 'intelligence' is not as successfully replicated by others. For example, on a music-hosting site, yesterday, I tried to search for the song Penghujung Rindu by Jamal Abdillah. It did not returned any result. And the search engine asked me if I had meant Penguins Hindu instead. Fenin!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Tagged

Sempena hari lahir orang yang tag saya, saya sudi panjangkan tag ini. Happy Birthday Sha.

1.         Bekas kekasih saya bukanlah seorang yang ternama, terbilang, mahupun gemilang. Menyanyi lagu Gemilang pun dia tak pandai.

2.         Saya sedang mendengar bunyi printer sedang mencetak sesuatu. Mungkin Gina, rakan sepejabat, punya kerja.

3.         Mungkin saya patut balik ke rumah dan sambung kerja mengemas rumah daripada terus mengejar orang NHS dalam urusan etika penyelidikan. Penatnya disepak ke sana sini. Sudahnya, back to square one.

4.         Saya suka belajar, sebab itulah saya sedang buat PhD. InsyaAllah, akan disiapkan sepenuhnya menjelang September 2010. Amin.

5.         Sahabat baik saya bukanlah bekas kekasih saya.

6.         Saya tak faham mengapa sahabat baik saya bukanlah bekas kekasih saya. Bukankah Aishah pernah berkata, jadilah kau sahabatku, kekasih dan teman?

7.         Saya kehilangan kesabaran di pagi Rabu yang mulia ini. Semuanya gara-gara diperkotak-katik oleh orang yang mengelak-elak daripada membuat kerja. Dah berkali-kali dihubungi. Tinggalkan mesej di voice mail, sms, dan email. Hujung-hujung, respon dia seolah-olah kita yang tak buat kerja dan tak berusaha menghubungi dia. Rasa nak melompat-lompat sambil tarik-tarik rambut sendiri.

8.         Ramai yang berkata, masa itu emas. Tapi, tak ramai yang memperjelaskan, emas itu jenis 24K, 18K, atau 9K. Tak pentingkah nilai K bagi emas itu?

9.         Makna nama saya...ialah penjaga dan pembajak. Saya tidak pernah bercita-cita menjadi jaga bank. Tapi saya memang suka berkebun. Yang paling saya suka ialah membuat literature review, satu aktiviti yang boleh diibaratkan sebagai ‘membajak’ dalam konteks menyuburkan ilmu.

10.       Cinta itu ada di situ. Tapi saya tak tahu di manakah sebenarnya tempat itu.

11.       Disuatu tempat bernama...Loughborough, saya ‘membajak’ dan ingin menuai hasilnya dalam masa dua tahun lagi.

12.       Saya akan cuba...sedaya upaya untuk selesaikan kerja-kerja berkaitan PhD sebelum cuti Krismas bermula 24hb ini.

13.       Makna "selamanya" tidak akan ditemui dalam kamus bahasa Arab, hindi, Parsi, Tagalog, dan sebagainya. Makna ‘selamanya’ hanya boleh ditemui dalam kamus Bahasa Melayu, atau kamus yang seperti kamus dwi-bahasa BM-BI.

14.       Handphone saya dah mula buat perangai. Joystick yang diguna untuk navigation dah mula tersekat-sekat, liat, dan membuat saya meluat. Tukau dgn handphone baru karang baru tau.

15.       Saya paling meluat dengan orang yang bermuka-muka untuk memfofulerkan dirinya sendiri. Very de sinister.

16.       Bila saya bangun dari tidur saya terfikir yang saya perlu bekerja. Sebab itu saya suka bila bangun dari tidur pada hari Sabtu dan Ahad, sebab itu hari cuti saya.  

17.       Party adalah satu perhimpunan yang menyeronokkan. Lebih seronok kalau ada elemen seni dalam perhimpunan itu. Bukankan ‘art’ berada ditengah-tengah ‘party’?

18.       Haiwan yang paling cute adalah arnab. Tapi Bugs Bunny tak cute. He’s annoying, and bugging people.

19.       Peringkat umur yang paling menyeronokkan adalah sekarang.

20.       Hari ini saya rasa sangat tension disebabkan perkara yang telah disebut di perkara 3 dan 7.

21.       Malam ini saya akan cuba membersih dan mengemaskan rumah, termasuklah kerja menggunakan penyedut hampagas, mengelap, basuh baju, dan sebagainya. Saya juga nak habiskan pasta goring yang saya masak pagi tadi. Kalau ada masa, saya nak masak kuah laksa – versi Lboro.

22.       Saya betul2 inginkan bulan saya jatuh ke riba.   

23.       Bila tengok muka kat cermin pagi tadi, saya rasa saya ni hensem. Rambut saya makin tebal. Saya kena jumpa tukang gunting rambut. Tapi saya tetap hensem.  

24.       Shopping kompleks tak wujud di Loughborough. Yang ada adalah kedai-kedai yang simple. Boleh habis pusing dalam 30 minit. Tak kompleks langsung. Mega-plex jauh sekali.

25.       Makanan segera biasanya segera jemu dimakan. Macam lagu-lagu KRU. Oooopss.

26.       Ayat2 terakhir pada orang yang sengaja cari gaduh dengan saya ialah “Ya, betul tu. Apa yang awak cakap semuanya betul.”

27.       Nak panjangkan tag ini? Ya. Silakan Puan Telipuk, Puan Janji Si Muda Lela dan Cik Mastikus.

 

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I Know How The River Feels



Tak sangka boleh terminat dengan lagu country pulak. Kalau setakat Shania Twain dan Lee Ann Rhymes tu, dah biasa. Tapi, tetiba terminat, terkasima, dan teringin nak buat entry pasal lagu ni. 

Tajuknya saja membayangkan puitisnya lagu ni. Sekali baca, tak tertangkap maksudnya. Sungai ada perasaan ke? Bagaimana manusia boleh berempati dengan sungai?

Aku sendiri ada dua tafsiran peribadi.

Tafsiran pertama: seperti yang dikisahkan dalam lagu ini, pencarian tempat persinggahan dan perteduhan berlaku tanpa dipaksa, dan tiada paksaan untuk berhenti. Memang indah jika akhirnya sampai ke muara kasih. Tapi, dah terasa penat. Cukuplah. Cukup dengan apa yang ada sekarang. Tak perlu dicari-cari. Ia ada, hanya menanti untuk dideriai. Jika menanti ia hadir dalam pakej seorang insan, mungkin jadi penantian hampa. 

Tafsiran kedua: I think I know what my life calling is. That's why I'm willing to sacrifice a great deal of my life back in Malaysia to pursue a PhD in the UK. I imagine myself in September 2010. Graduating. Being addressed as Dr Harris. The I'll know how the river feels. That's where I belong. I'm destinied to be a Dr. These works I'm doing now are like the flow of the river. I'm accumulating lots of knowledge and experience along the way. And when the moment comes, the river will join the sea. I will join the wider, more turbulant, and richer scholarly word. Then I'll know how the river feels.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Un Giorno Por Noi - satu terjemahan



Hari untuk kita, masanya akan tiba
cinta akan bebas, tiada batas
mimpi yang dinafi akan bersemi
raikan cinta yang kini tersimpan

Hari untuk kita, untuk rasa hidup
hidup sepenuhnya, untuk kau dan aku
hari untuk kita, untuk rasa hidup
hidup sepenuhnya, untuk kau dan aku

Cinta ini akan rebahkan
segala rintangan dan ombak
dan akan ada untuk kita di dunia
detik menjulang juaranya cinta
detik menjulang juaranya cinta

Dedikasi untuk orang Diamond Bay.

Pantun di Malam Yang Panjang

Di tepi kolam menunggu dinda,
kolam bina bersegi-segi,
bukankah malam masih muda,
mengapa gusar mengintai pagi

Pulut tanak diletak ragi,
tiga hari timbul masam,
mengapa tidak mengintai pagi,
rasa siksa dibelit malam

Bunga-bunga dekat di taman,
hutan jauh diidamkan,
bintang ada jadi peneman,
mata ingin menatap bulan

Ke hutan mencari jati,
jangan pula berburu rusa,
di bulan tesimpan hati,
bintang tiada menerbit rasa

Breaking the Premack

Okay. That's it. I want to break what I've promised myself. The ethics application is taking longer than I expected. Since making that promise, I've done quite a lot of work, including leg-works. I feel I've done enough to reward myself. So, I'll be updating this blog.

Furthermore, it seems that the more actual work I'm doing, the more time I have for blogs, facebook, and so on.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Blobs of lights


Blobs of lights
Originally uploaded by pak alang

The lights are bright, but not sharp. trying to find a bubble of light, to hang above my bed, and wait for the bubble to burst, sprinkling me with light dusts.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Lengai

Adusss.... ngapa la lengai bebenor ni. Tak aktif langsung. Tak produktif. 

Ethics application kena disiapkan. Semalam, dalam usaha meningkatkan kembali motivasi diri, ayah join workshop 'Life Coaching'. Had some very good input. More important, it spurred me into taking 'mini-actions' that have yielded promising results. 

For now, I want to apply the Premack Principle to myself. I wont allow myself to update the blog, facebook, AND flickr until I lock and submit the ethics forms. 

See you soon.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Sengaja Mencari Yang Jauh

Bila lidah sudah dikunci
tinggal hati tercari-cari
sedang mata berlari-lari
alih pandang kanan kiri

Tidak berani mencari makna
di senyum atau matanya
tidak berani melontar rasa
di riak muka atau suara

Sanggup menjauh bersusah payah
bertaruh kasih mengharap tuah
bukan datang melimpah ruah
bukan pula empang pecah 

Yang jauh diseru
yang dekat dibuat tak tahu
lidah dikunci mata memburu
hati meraung bertalu-talu

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Lagi satu gerun

Ada satu lagi gerun
berbulan-bulan bertenggek atas bahu
patutlah ada kala rasa macam nak rebah
susah. Susah.

Bila kena palu dengan lidah
muka dan telinga naik merah
pipi rasa kembang tak tahu nak letak di mana
malu. Malu.

Apa yang susah sangat
sampai sanggup hidup dengan gerun
terhenyak saban hari
sampai tak boleh nak enjoy
puas. Puas.

Satu hari, dari hari-hari yang makin nipis
terpaksa juga memberanikan diri
mengadap cermin melihat beban atas bahu
lupakan dulu merah muka dan kembang pipi
ada malas yang perlu dicantas
ada kecut yang perlu diregang
laut luas sendang menanti, apa lagi
terjunlah. Terjun.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Cruel Punishment, Realised

It was when he kissed me
that I realised
I have forgotten
the meaning of closeness

When he hugged me
I realised
I missed
letting myself melt

Have I punished myself too much?
Touching feels so strange
and awkward

Do I still know
to love
and being loveable?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Gerun Sepucuk Surat

Masa check surat di kotak surat postgrad, tak de la jangka dapat apa2 surat. Surat2 dari UIA pun dah diterima awal minggu ini. So, terkejut dengan baiknya (nicely suprised :-) ) bila tengok ada surat, siap bercop BBC lagi. Kalau BBC bagi tiket untuk rakaman Just A Minute best jugak. 

Bila dibuka, rupa2nya surat tu dari dental clinic di Melton Mowbry. Setelah sekian lama, baru sekarang dapat appointment. Apa la punya lembab sistem kat sini. Nampak sangat kurang doktor gigi. 

Jadi, 'lawatan' ke klinik tu pada 28hb ni. Bila 'fakta' tersebut dah masuk ke dalam otak, tetiba timbul gerun. Rasa senak kat ulu hati. Bukannya nak buat apa pun... just nak cabut geraham bongsu je. Tapi... yea la. Dah lama tak buat medical procedure. Tambah pulak Melton Mowbry tu jauh gak.. lebih 17 batu dari Lboro. Kena cari kawan utk temankan ke sana. Mana la tau... kot2 lepas cabut gigi tak leh nak pegang stereng kereta pulak. Sabor je la.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Monday, November 10, 2008

metamorphosis





























At my age, David Beckham had achieved a lot, I realised recently. I don't mean his exploits on soccer fields. I noticed he had worn many different hair styles. Short, long, limp, sticky. Me? More or less the same since childhood.
Everytime I go to the barber, I have an intention to make something different with my hair. But, truth be told, I am clueless about hairstyling. I don't know what to say to the barber. I can't verbalise my 'user requirements' to the hair designer. So, in the end, I chicken out and request the same ole' same ole'.
I wish I have the courage and knowledge to transform my locks before they are gone.

Ayam Golek

Hari ni masak ayam golek. Kira menjadi le jugak. Sbelum pergi carboot sales, defrost ayam. Balik dari shopping (dapat speakers sepasang), masak dalam oven. Inilah hasilnya.




Saturday, November 08, 2008

Thank You

Alhamdulillah,
- the flights were not delayed
- I was on time for all trips
- I did not lose anything
- the hostel was secure and clean
- I was healthy
- I did not have spend too much money

Glad that the Barcelona trip was safe and sound.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Hablo Espanyol?

People say you will appreciate something more after you lost it. A version of that sentiment was clearly felt during my stay in Barca. The land, a heady mix of architectural style, the sound and smell are very different to the UK, or Lboro at least. They made me feel Lboro as a home. Second. Or third. A home none the less.

At times, I felt 'respected' because I speak English, no matter that I don't the least bit look Caucasion. Perhaps this is how the European tourist feel as the roam the roads of KL, people addressing them as 'Sir'. For me, though, the respect mostly comes from business man and women keen to have my custom. They really tried to speak the customers' language, literally and figuratively.

While browsing for fridge magnets at a souvenir shop, not unlike those found along Oxford St, London, the shop attendent enquired if I was from the Phillippines. Upon hearing that I'm from Malaysia, he chirped, "Murah, murah. I give you a good price my friend." Or something like that. But he indeed said 'murah' more than once.

* * * * * *

Acquainting myself with the idiosyncracies of Barca, I found myself pining for the 'comfort' of living in the UK. Take grocery shopping for one. At Lboro, grocery shopping is a straight forward task. Vegetarian logo are easily found on food packaging. May be I didn't look around enough, but I did not see a single 'suitable for vegetarian' label on food at grocery shop like Consum, Lidl, and Cortes de Ingles. To make it worse, most food information does not have English version. I had to think hard whether 'cebolla' is a type of meat or not. It was later, when I watched a programme on tv at the hostel, that I learned cebolla is onion.

Street intersections are also unlike any that I've seen in the UK. The street does not intersect squarely, forming a sharp cross. Instead of having squares where two streets intersect, Barca has octagons. So, you'd have to walk a few extra meters to cross a street.

However, having said that, I have a feeling that Barca is very pedesterian-friendly. Most of the time, I did not have to wait for the light to turn green to cross the street. It is as if the traffic system was designed to give priority to pedestarians than to motorists. I wonder what the motorists think about the traffic light behaviour.

I'm also very much impressed with the Metro. Some of the coaches look very much like PUTRA coaches. It was not the physical condition that impressed me, it was their regularity. Again, I did not have to wait long to catch a train. Usually, within 2 or 3 minutes, a train will arrive at the station. I think, the longest that I had to wait was for 5 minutes, and it was quite late at night.

So, those are some of the merits and demerits of Barca based on my short trip. I'm sure there are many more things to explore. The arts (I didn't get o go to Picasso's Museum), the live culture (I'm not referring to yogurt content here), night lights, and so many other things beckon me to visit Barca again. I would love to take you on a trip to Barca, mi hijo.

Le quiero

What am I looking for in Barcelona? The answer is vague at best, and I suspect the real answer is not readuly accessible yet.

When I decided to take a trip out of the UK, my first choice was Berlin. However, at the time I was ready to book a flight, Barcelona was a better option, cost-wise, than Berlin. So, at the set out, I was not heading to Barca.

I borrowed a Spanish language book from the town library. The smattering of Spanish I learned at Guelph were refreshed. The Spanish words felt smooth on my tounge. It was, an still is a pleasure to speak the language. Patrick had kindly lend a guide book to Barcelona. I skimmed it, not really making a concrete plan of what to do and where to go. The night before I'm du to fly, my plan was still very much open. Sagrada Familia. La Ramblas. Montjuic. They were just venues, random. It fels strange not to impose a structure upon the days that I'm going to spend in Barca. I'm quite used to make plans for trips. Even for going to a car boot sales. I'm perturbed by the lack of intention.

During the flight, I took the guidebok yet again. I managed to read more leisurely. There was no pressure to systhesise anything from the book. The more that I read, the more I'm endeared to this city. The old and new, expansion, preserving historical root. These phrases used to describe Barca have more romantic appeal than can be said about Lboro.

Perhaps, this romantic appeal also tugs at my heart as I'm writing this piece. My mind replayed the song 'Dambaan' from time to time. It seemed like an apt song to bring to Barca. I hope Barca will help me find a way to deal with the lingering longing. Forcing it into a recognisable shape. So that I can give it a name. And, perhaps say out aloud, le quiero.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Percutian Di Barcelona















Matahari main sembunyi
Empat malam menyorok bulan
Rajin menapak berhari-hari
Ada masanya kebasahan

Jalan malam tidak terang
Untung selamat sendirian
Kaki penat hampir kejang
Sampai balik kehampaan

Andai hujan rajin menimpa
Kalah rasa berlinangan
Apa dicari tidak dijumpa
Niat bersantai kekudungan

Monday, November 03, 2008

Berbatas

Engkaukah yang menjentik
dada bergelombang
sedang mataku kekeliruan
mengelak dari jatuh kematamu

Bagai berpucuk semula
Ranting musim dingin
Walau musim bunga
Masih jauh

Tak mungkin kukuburkan
Rasa yang masih ada
Hanya untuk melayan
Rasa yang baru tiba

Haruskan aku hamparkan saja
Untuk kau tatap
Sedang aku sendiri kekaburan

Di sudut hatimu yang mana
Dapat aku sentuh seketika

Di sudut hatiku yang mana
Dapat aku biarkan kau sentuh

Berkali-kali aku persoalkan
Di mana adilnya
Untukmu
Untukku
Untuknya

Mahukah kau kuberi
Seutas kasih
Yang pangkalnya pada dia?

Sanggupkah aku sendiri
Memintal kasih
Sekadar himpunan di riba?

Adakah aku khianat
Menghulurkan rasa
Selain kepadanya?

Lalu aku biarkan saja?

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Cukuplah Sedikit

Sekuat mana otot jari
sehabis daya mencengkam dan menggenggam
pergi tetap pergi
terlepas

Sehebat mana jaringan saraf
sehabis daya menaakul dan mentafsir
rahsia tetap rahsia
terpelihara

Kudrat tetap, bersukat
sempadan kudrat jadikan batas nafsu
dalam ghairah merungkai rahsia alam
jangan sampai melangkau ruang insan
mencabar Tuhan

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Syukurlah Aku Kerdil

Syukurlah
aku tidak tahu semua
sebab musabab sesuatu peristiwa

Ditabirkan pemandangan
dibataskan pendengaran
dihadkan akal

Syukurlah
atas kurangnya upaya
untuk merungkai selirat plot hidup
tidak sepenuhnya mencapai faham
keperitan yang menandai episod

PadaMu
yang memiliki segala ilmu
terima kasih dariku
kerana tidak meletakkan tanggungan
menguasai misteri
di bahuku yang kerdil
cukup DiriMu
menyimpan rahsia hidupku

==========

Genap sudah setahun dakapan terlerai.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

First frost

yesterday the first frost of the season made an appearance. Sejuk!!! It was the first time for using the de-icer on the car. Today, the frost was even worst. There was ice on top of the frost. My hands are freezing from touching the de-icer can and the cold steering wheel. Sabor je la. And it made me wonder, how did I ever survived the more extreme Canadian winter?

Dambaan - Ulasan



(follow up entry Dare You Say It)

Ungkapan kata selindung hasrat nan di hati
andainya ditafsir terserlah makna yang tersembunyi
renungan mata bukan pandangan biasa

Pandai cover line, yea? Cakap macam-macam, tapi sebenarnya ada benda lain yang nak dicakap. Penat le jugak memikir, 'What's the point of this conversation?'. Rupa2nya, ada hasrat yang nak diluahkan. Suka, ek? Penat main mata, tapi tak faham juga, kan? Jangan2 org yg disukai tu lurus bendul, atau memang tak berfikir ke arah itu.


bertahun handai terjalin hingga waktu ini
gurauan mesra menghiasi masa tika bersama
semakin berputik perasaan ini

Aiseh, kesian. Lama betul 'mesra tapi tak de apa2'. Macam kisah cinta Kuch Kuch Hota Hai la pulak. Bunga2 perasaan tu nak di tunjukkan ke? Atau pendamkan saja? (Ni soalan dari tag board).

kini baru ku sedari selama ini kau ku sayangi
andai bukan itu hakikatnya
mengapa rindu yang kurasa

La... baru sedar ke? Macam tak caya je. Apa beza rindu sebagai kawan dan rindu sebagai kekasih? Atau sebenarnya ada perasaan lain selain rindu? (Teringat artikel sepinggan dosa berulam pahala kat SaifulIslam.com)

mungkin tiada ku fahami
tidak dapat ku nafikan lagi
beban rahsia kian membakar diri

Ni pengakuan yang lebih realistik. Kekadang tu memang la suka pada seseorang, tapi tak nak mengaku. Lebih rela pendamkan bunga2 perasaan daripada tunjukkan pada dia. Sudahnya, rasa terbeban. Kalau menyimpan perasaan menjadi satu beban, ada baiknya luahkan pada dia. Dia terima atau tidak, itu lain cerita. Yang penting dapat kurangkan beban. Sanggup ke menatap dia dengan 'bukan pandangan biasa' setiap kali berjumpa? Berapa lama sanggup menafikan apa yang dirasa?

kalimah cinta selongkar renung nan dicipta
mungkinkah dibiar terdampar kasih tak kesampaian
naluri bisik bukannya dambaan cinta

Hok ni pakcik tak berapa nak faham. Tak leh nak ulas. Yang pasti, kalau tak diletupkan ATM, manakan dapat duitnya.

ikhlas kunyatakan
kau yang ku sayangi
kau yang ku cintai
walau tak mampu ku miliki

Part ni pakcik skeptikal sikit. Ikhlas ke? betul ke takde expect apa2 dari pengakuan ikhlas tu? Bukankah akan senyum tak sudah2 kalau si dia kata "Saya pun suka kat awak"? Seikhlasnya, memang ingin cinta tu berbalas, kan? Tapi, kalau dah tau tak mampu nak memiliki si dia, buat apa nak ngabihkan boreh? Kesian dia. Macam letak beban atas dia untuk menunaikan sesuatu yang mustahil.

ingin ku luahkan
mungkin satu hari
kan terbuka pintu hati
dapat jua kau terima
diriku akhirnya

Haa... kan pakcik dah cakap... tak de la ikhlas mana pun, kan? Memang ada menaruh harapan tepuk bersambut, ala2 main sit sit sit, tom tom tom, yes sir no sir one two som. Ape2 je la. Jangan paksa diri sendiri. Realistiklah dalam bercinta. Dan jangan paksa orang lain. Kasihanilah orang yang disukai. Binalah hubungan yang tidak mustahil.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Dare you say it?

This entry is a response to a question from 'anonymus' (banyak benar la org yang bernama Anonymus nih...). Actually, I was thinking about the same thing this morning. Let me reply using a fictional account, and may I emphasise FICTIONAL.

===========

The sound of mobile phone pierced the silence of midnight.
[Hi. U wat pe tu?] He looked at the text on the mobile with a passing interest. Out of having nothing else to do, he replied by injecting a slice of annoyance [Nuthin. Ada pe2 ke?] He didn't have to wait for long before an answer came in.

[Yes, ada sumthin. I miss u la]. He could not believe what he was reading. Totally unexpected. From outside, the moonlight trickled thorough the curtains, into his room. He tilted his head, as if trying to find an answer in the empty space of his room. A sudden chill enveloped him. With heart beating faster, he wrote [Hey... dont main2. If you dont mean it, dont say it]. He hoped the warning would calm him down, more than to deter the text sender.

[I do mean it. I do] The silence in his room began to engulfed him. The silence was explosive, creating a storm in his chest. He decided not to reply. He had no immediate reply. He switched of his phone. And soon, he switched off himself, entering an uneasy sleep.

He saw a face, comfortably familiar, yet profoundly like a stranger. He somehow know that she did not notice his presence. He followed her line of gaze, and was surprised to see her gaze landed on a picture. It was a photograph that he had taken before! He had composed the picture to capture his undefined longings. What surprised him the most was that she looked at the picture as if she understood his undefined longings. It terrifies him. He dared not pull his own gaze from the picture, and back to her eyes.

He woke up when the sun was still below the horizon. When he felt a bit more restful, he switched on the mobile. A logical anticipation, but not too different from a premonition, prepared him to open a new text message.

[I said it because I mean it. How can you mean it, and NOT say it?] Then he knew. He HAD a reply. But he dared not say it.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Saga of Datuk SRK

The Star
Tuesday October 21, 2008

By MARTIN CARVALHO
MALACCA: Bollywood heartthrob Shah Rukh Khan has accepted the Darjah Mulia Seri Melaka (DMSM) award from Yang diPertua Negri (or governor) Tun Mohd Khalil Yaakob, which carries the title of Datuk.

I see. So, the annoucement before was done without SRK having accepted (or known about?) the title?

“Shah Rukh Khan has agreed to accept it and this was conveyed to the Governor’s Office.
“He will try to make it in November but the date of the ceremony has yet to be fixed,” he told reporters

Nice. 'He will try', won't he? If he's busy with something else, don't kecik hati, ok? After this, make sure your hidung is cukup mancung before you sorong-sorongkan pipi.

Photos from Birm trip 18&19 Oct 2008































































Ampunkan aku... tapi

"Redup mata mu memandang wajahku
jangan menangis
memang benar dulu kunci hatiku
ada padamu"

This entry is for those who wants to 'melupakan si dia'. I choose to start by quoting from the song, which presents the perspective of 'si dia'. As is clear from the first stanza of this song, he USED to love you. It is not his responsibility anymore if you still have feelings for him, and looking at him with longings in your eyes. There might be scores of other reasons for letting him go, but this one seems persuasive enough.

Now, let's examine the question. Why would you want to 'forget' him? Well, the above song gives a clue. You could still cry whenever you see him, hear his voice, look at all the presents that he gave you. Right? When he called you to talk - just talk - about his problems, probably about his new girlfriend - you still feel as if he had never walked out on you. In other words, you want to move on, but he, and reminders of him, are still around, lingering.

If you agree with this, then I'd like to steer you to another possibility: you don't want to be reminded of him as frequently as before. Right? You want to move on without having to stop now and then to pick up pieces of memories and holding back your tears when does so. If we can agree on this, then I'll rephrase the original question into "What should I do so that I don't remember him as often as before?" That's a question that's easier to answer. And let me try to answer this question using principles of learning developed within behavioristic perspective.

There can be numerous things that can remind you of him. The teddy bear that he gave you on your birthday, the ring tone that was assigned to his number, the picture of both of you at KFC, a key chain, a scarf. These items would trigger your memory of him. And whenever you remember him, you are flooded with negative emotions that you'd rather live without. Your heart beat faster when you hear the ring tone. It used to be a factor cause you to break into a big smile whenever you hear it, coz it means you'll hear his sweet voice. After breaking up, the ring tone only stirs sadness and despair. You have learned to associate the ringtone with negative emotions. Those who has knows their S-R learning can perhaps know where I'm going with this.

The ringtone is a physical stimulus (S). Your memory of him is a mental stimulus. Both are stimulus that can be associated with an emotional response (R) like sadness and despair. You'd experience the emotional response when you are exposed to the stimulus. Just like little Albert who would cry whenever he sees a rat, even though initially he was quite fond of the rat. To simplify things a little bit, lets just say your memory of him is an unconditioned stimulus (CS): it would automatically evoke an emotional response. The ringtone is then the conditioned stimulus (UCS). If you manage to read through this paragraph, well done. If not, you'd not make much sense of the next one.

The solution to our modified problem is to break the association between the CS and the conditioned response (CS). How can it be achieved? Well, you can already see how the ringtone can evoke two different sets of emotions. You're not stuck with it. You can change it. You can try to associate the ring tone to another emotional response. Secondly, one that I personally prefer for its simple practicality, is to REMOVE the offending stimulus. Delete the ringtone! Put the teddy bear in a box, out of your site. Put the keychain somewhere you won't see everyday. Delete his phone number from your phone. Don't pick up when he call or text you. Without the stimulus, you're less likely to experience the response.

You can also learn to discriminate the stimulus that you used to associate with him. Lets say he own a Honda EX5. When in love, everytime you saw a man on ANY motorcycle, you think of him. That's stimulus generalisation. You've learned to associate your emotional reactions with all types of motorcyles. What you need to do after breaking up is stimulus discrimination. He owns only one kapchai. He doesn't own a Ninja, XZR, Gold Wing, and other makes of motorcycles. Why should you 'punish' all other motorcycle? Look at the man riding the Ninja, and appreciate how he is different from your ex. If your lecturer also has a motorcycle, even better. You can associate the motorcycle with a more positve figure. If you decided to 'hate' motorcycle, then hate only that specific motorcycle bearing that 'ugly' number plate.

Anak sungai lagi berubah, inikan pula hati manusia.

Your memory, emotions, hopes, aspiration, and all of life's treasures should not go down when you break up with him. Rebuild a new life. You can change the meanings that you find in the elements that surrounds you. There's so much to be discovered in life. So many stimulus to which we can condition ourselves. I'm not saying that a behavioristic approach would solve everything, but it sure can take care most simple problems. And don't fool yourself into thinking that you, and only you, have a very complicated problem. How much of a somebody are you?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Bulan....












... jatuh ke riba

Autumn colours



















































Its not all about red and yellow. Green is also an autumn color.

Pre-Barcelona trip









































InsyaAllah, I will be spending the weekend in Birmingham. I was there last Saturday with Nik to meet Irni, my friend's sister, who is moving to Abu Dhabi soon. Together with Zul, her new colleague from Malaysia, we had dinner at a very much full restaurant. The nasi Arab was dlicious, and the portion very generous. We had to tapau what seems like enough to feed another 3 persons to full satiation.

After sending Irni home, there was an impromptu guys' night-out. We had a lovely walk by the canal up to the Bull Ring. Nik had a field day taking pictures, of which I have yet to see uploaded to his Facebook. The night air was chilly, but the scenery made up for it. I could not resist taking a few snaps of my own on my mobile phone, which usually is not so great with night time lighting.

This weekend, I'll be bringing the new DSLR. Hopefully, I would be able to take some better pictures this time around. And perhaps a few pictures of myself to be uploaded on Facebook.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Taking a break

Met my Director of Research just now. She give me some very positive feedback on my performance in the viva session. I'm glad that my knowledge on and around the topic is acknowledged. The quantity of work done was also deemed enough for a PhD. Leganya......

So, after the first year reaching a climax, I'm slowly plodding into the second year. (Has it been one year already? Seems it was like only a few days ago that I hugged you good bye at KLIA). I need to recharge. Buying the DSLR was part of the plan to recharge. I'm going to Barcelona, insyaAllah. I've told Patrick about my plan. He was totally okay with it. He even volunteered to lend me a Barcelona guide book. How kind of him. Barcelona, here I come.

Bulan Mengambang

Alhamdulillah. Semalam langit cerah. Cantik sungguh bulan penuh. Subhanallah. Sejuk angin berpuput, nyamannya sampai ke hati.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Ingin merenung bulan

Hajat di hati malam ini ingin merenung bulan. Menatap penuhnya bulan, luasnya langit. Tapi, hujan di petang hari; membawa mendung di saat bulan mengambil tempatnya di dada langit.

Mendung jugalah di bumi, di dadaku. Gumpal-gumpal kesayuan yang makin memberat tidak terurai menjadi hujan. Ku bawa sarat ke peraduan. Moga tidak lemas sewaktu lena.

Pada muka bulan yang cerah, kuharap dapat menyingkap tirai minda yang kelam. Ingin kubaca kekusutan fikir pada cerah bulan itu. Saat ini aku kehilangan tenang. Tasik damaiku dikocak. Dalam menunggu tenang kembali, pedih digulung ombak. Hilang orientasi diri, dalam mabuk mencari arah.

Jika jawapannya yang semudah itu, mengapa sekuat ini gelombangnya?






Telah lama merenung rumput di laman sendiri, ingin merenung bulan yang tinggi.

Membina Wajah

Imejanku pecah bersepah
bila menggambarkan parasmu
tertindan wajah-wajah
dari arkib memori
belum pernah wajah sejarah
sejenuh ini mengkaburkan
wajah nan baru
Ada apa dengan wajah-wajah itu?
Apa yang kurang bila melihat wajahmu?

Ternyata sukar kubina
sebuah potret yang nyata
dengan rupa dan nama sepadan
di waktu aku berjaga

Akhirnya kubiarkan mimpi
melakonkan kisahnya sendiri
anehnya
kutemui engkau terbina sempurna
seolah terasa disentuhan
di latar cerita yang tak terfikirkan
sewaktu sedar

Kau kulihat lebih asli
dalam mimpi
tapi ceritera mimpi
tak terjemahkan di siang hari

Monday, October 13, 2008

Longlainya bercinta

Di awal bercinta, macam hilang daya. Motivasi kerja entah ke mana. Gizi dan nutrisi dipandang sepi. Dunia fizikal dan metafizikal bercelaru. Siang tersulam ke jaring malam. Mimpi jadi kelarai di jurai siang. Mencari-cari alasan untuk jumpa dia. Mencari-cari jalan menutup tolol yang tersengih tak kena masa.

Bila cinta berkecai, macam hilang nyawa. Suruh belajar dia melangu. Ke kelas rasa malas. Nikmat hiburan tidak terasa. Teringat-ingat pada dia dan segala peristiwa. Mencari-cari silap diri. Masih lagi tidak percaya kisah cinta ternoktah begitu saja. Mulalah mencari jalan untuk lupakan dia. Balut kesedihan dengan lagu balada. Ubatkan luka dengan menziarah tempat pernah berjumpa.

Longlainya bila bercinta. Bukankan sepatutnya cinta memberikan kudrat supaya lebih kuat. Lebih tekun berusaha. Lebih bersemangat menggilap bakat. Lebih juang untuk cemerlang. Itulah cinta yang produktif namanya.

==============

I’ve been asked questions like, “Sir, macam mana kita nak lupakan orang yang kita sayang? Sebab saya dah break dengan dia.” I owe to these persons a post in my blog. I will address this question later. For the mean time, I’d like to pose: Is that the right question?

I Dare Not

I dare not ask for more
for fear of bloody thunders
drowning out my cerebral voice

All that I would ask
is to be near you
to hear your heart beat
to sooth the ache
of not being in the light
of smiles bright and laughter warm

If I may ask for one more
please place your hand
on my chest. Feel my hearbeat
convince me I still am relatable
to life mysterious and feelings real

I dare not ask for more.
Forgive me if you had expected it.
It is not that I'm running away
but I don't have the strength to stay

I dare not ask for more.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

DSC_0001



This is the first picture taken with the new camera. Overall, I'm happy with the quality of the output. I thought the lens would not be wide enough to my liking, so I was happy to be shown otherwise.

Niat - satu terlaksana











Alhamdulillah, salah satu niat yg dipasang telahpun tercapai. Setelah sekian lama mengidam, akhirnya ada juga rezeki memiliki Nikon D80. Ini akan memeriahkan lagi satu niat yang hendak dilaksanakan pada penghujung bulan ini, insyaAllah.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Predecessor that had never existed

  1. Sulama
  2. YourVi
  3. Gen 1
  4. Wawasan 2019
  5. Almost-Free-cycle
  6. BMW 315.9i
  7. so-Sony
  8. Nikoff
  9. Georgevillage, Penang
  10. Milemetrico pen

Datuk Shah Rukh Khan

I'm struggling to find an accurate expletive when I heard the Malacca state is going to honour SRK with Datukship. 

Does he deserve it? From the state of Tamil Nadu, Kerala or Bihar, yes. From Malacca? I don't see an obvious reason for it. Has he been secretly contributing to the development of Malacca? I hope someone will clarify his merit.

Does he even want it? What could possibly a Datukship from Malacca be useful in his career and his life in general? Did he say he's thinking of becoming a Malaysian citizen? Or is it a way to pave his path into Malaysian politics (read: BN) in the hope of gaining Indian votes? A weapon against Hindraf, eh?

Sorry.... can't help being toxically cynical about this. 

Thursday, October 09, 2008

From a politician to a poet















Yeayyyyy!!! After long stuck as a politician, today I managed to climb the wordsmith ladder to be at the same level of poets. This clamour of effort was spurred by Prof Dr Elina. Thanks dear for giving me the motivation to go higher.

Panel Presentation

Phew... just have finished my first panel presentations. Got a number of though questions, and one cute question from a (French?) guy. Overall, the presentation went well. The practice at the lab meeting had its positive effect. I swallowed some words, and re-repeat others in the beginning. Towards the end, I managed to let go and enjoy giving the presentation. Alhamdulillah.

So, the trepidation, anxiety and itching are gone. And I know my sweat glands are working fine.

Open House pictures

Lupa pulak ada gambar open house kat dalam handphone. Here are some scenes on the day.



























Kuih muih macam2 jenis. Putu kacang pun ada. Tapi tak leh challenge putu kacang cap lesung.













Anak dara pingitan tuan rumah.













Tiga tetamu dari Kalkotta: Mano, Jyothi, dan Connie. They liked everything. Lepas ni nak bukak kelas memasak untuk depa pulak.















Errr.... yg ni tak de kaitan dgn open house. Mlainkan kalau dapat duit raya yg mencukupi utk beli sebiji. Huhuhhu