THEY WILL ASK thee as to what they should spend on others. Say: "Whatever of your wealth you spend shall [first] be for your parents, and for the near of kin, and the orphans, and the needy, and the wayfarer; and whatever good you do, verily, God has full knowledge thereof." - Al-Baqarah (2:215)

Monday, 29 October 2007

Raya sakan!

I was in my office on Friday morning when Jah called me up. She was at the General Hospital to get her supply of medication for the month and she was hoping we could meet up for lunch. Hmmm… let me rephrase that… she was hoping I could buy her lunch! Too bad I was fasting… the last day of my puasa enam… so I had to turn her down.

However, since I had planned to go for my Raya rounds on Sunday, I told her I’d be visiting her at home on Sunday and asked her if she’d like to join me for my visits to a few other houses. As expected, she was excited about the idea.

Came Sunday morning, just as I was about to leave my house at 9.30am, Jah called. She said her mother had already cooked something for me and she wanted to make sure I was indeed coming. So off I went, and since Shila stays in a small town just along the way, I picked her up first at the town’s bus station which is just along the main road. Her daughter Laila tagged along. It was nice seeing them in a ‘boria’ blue baju kurung outfit. Laila woke up early on that day as she was excited about going jalan-jalan somewhere.

As we chatted on the way to Jah’s house, Shila told me how on the 6th day of Raya, she woke up to find Laila standing beside her, crying. The little girl suddenly missed her father who died 5 years ago and was asking her mother if they could go visit her late father’s grave. Shila did not promise anything as her late husband’s grave is in another state and traveling would need money…

When we reached Jah’s house, she was already waiting at the door. She was oh so excited when I brought down from my car a raya hamper for her. (But then again, Jah has always been easily excited!)

For the first time that day, I had the opportunity to meet Jah’s mother, who’s in her mid 50’s and works as a kindergarten teacher. Apparently when Jah came back from the hospital on Friday, before even getting into the house she was already excitedly telling her mother that I’d be coming on Sunday. So, in addition to the kuih raya they had, Jah’s mother took the trouble to cook some meehoon goreng for us. That was my second round of meehoon goreng for the day as I just had meehoon goreng for breakfast at home earlier.

Jah stays in the same town as Hana and I was thinking of bringing Jah, Shila and Laila along when I visit Hana. However when I called earlier, Hana said she’d be working morning shift on Sunday so she wouldn’t be at home. Nevertheless, since I was not familiar with Hana’s kampong, I asked Jah to show me the way to the kampong so that the next time I intend to go, I’d know how to get to the kampong.

A colleague of mine (who was assigned as Hana’s main buddy as she stays in the same town) had earlier told me that Hana was still in denial (about her husband’s death and about her HIV infection). The same colleague also expressed her concern that Hana’s daughters walk to school. Since I had not been to the place earlier, I couldn’t imagine how far it would be. So when I got to Hana’s kampong on Sunday, I was shocked. The kampong, which is also an orang asli settlement, is located at a hilly area (there’s even a waterfall nearby) and is quite far from town where the school is located. Even by bicycle it can be considered far, imagine the 13 & 8 year old girls WALKING to school every day! Oh dear, I must make the effort to get the necessary schooling assistance for the girls. Now that I know where the kampong is, I will definitely visit again when Hana is at home during the day.

We then headed back to Shila’s place. Shila is actually under the care of another Buddy, but whenever I get the opportunity, I’d still get them to meet the PLWHAs under my care. I had never been to Shila’s house either, but Shila was in the car to show the way so no problem getting to her house. Again, this was another kampong quite far from town and those without own transportation would find it a problem getting to town. Earlier in the morning Shila had sought her sister’s help to send her and Laila to the bus-station by motorbike.

This time little Laila was the one who got excited when I brought down the hamper for them. I got to meet Shila’s mom and sister. Like Jah, Shila’s family is also very supportive. The whole family is already familiar with quite a few of us buddies, and we are always welcomed at their home. That Sunday, upon knowing that I was coming, although they never met me (but have heard about me), Shila’s mom prepared laksa, nasi himpit and kelamai for me - all home cooked. Funny thing was, on the way to Shila’s house, there were people selling kelamai along the road and Jah was saying, “Kak, tengok dia orang jual lemang gantung kak!!” Actually, it was the kelamai, which is also cooked inside a bamboo like lemang, but the ingredients are different.

The next destination was Sha’s house. Jah, Shila and Laila tagged along. Sha had just moved to a new house during Ramadhan and so I had never been to her new place. I called her first to get directions. Her new home is not in a kampong and it shouldn’t be too hard to find. Or so I thought…

I never heard of her taman before and since I needed to get into a particular junction from the main road to get to her taman, it turned out to be quite a task. I tell you I wouldn’t want to have Sha as my co-pilot should I need to fly anywhere (not that I know how to fly anyway!). With the police station on my right, she said it was on my left… and when I was supposed to go right at the 4th traffic light she said it was the 2nd traffic light. Aduuuh…

She finally sent her younger sister to wait for me at the junction, telling me to look for a girl in a pink tudung on a motorbike. Thank God there was only one girl in a pink tudung there, and yes, she was on a motorbike. If there was a Puteri Umno meeting nearby, I would have trouble identifying Sha’s sister!!

So yes, we finally made it to Sha’s house. By then I really needed to pee I forgot to bring down the hamper from my car! :) I only remembered about it later while chatting with the ladies.

Sha had just finished cooking when we got to her house. Guess what she cooked for us? Hehehe… yep, meehoon goreng! My 3rd round of meehoon goreng for the day! I got to meet Sha’s baby boy only for the second time and held him in my arms for the first time. The last time I met him was when he was just a newly born. Now he’s already a chubby 10 month old boy! Well, Sha is one of the less problematic ones because she has a supporting husband who doesn’t have financial problems, so my contacts with Sha are mostly by telephone.

Anyway, Sha said she will invite me again to her house soon as she intends to hold a doa selamat at her new home.

By the time we left Sha’s house, it was almost 2 pm. I immediately sent Shila and Laila back, followed by Jah, and then headed straight home. I only reached home at 3 pm, with an overdose of meehoon goreng in my tummy… :)




17 comments:

Nightwing said...

Helo Kak Pi,

So nice that u get to visit them and i am sure they are sure happy to see u...just coincidence on that day the menu was goreng beehoon...:)

It must have been good to be able to check up on them while do Raya visit too...:)

PrincessJournals said...

memang betullah Pi, raya sakan! like i said in kerps. i love meehun! dont ask me why, i just do. ;)

Pi Bani said...

Nightwing,
Yep, I love to do 2 in 1 visits - checking on them sambil beraya. And eating a lot of meehoon goreng in the process... :)

Princessjournals,
You love meehoon? You would have surely enjoyed it if you came along with me that day...

kina said...

Raya mihun sakan la Kak Pi!

Glad to hear they were all having a good time raya sakan.

The Pisces Man said...

A different twist of 'beraya'ing huh, Kak Pi...

Pi Bani said...

Kina,
Ye lah, orang raya makan lemang, ketupat semua tu... I raya makan 3 different versions of mihun goreng!

Pisces man,
A different twist indeed. Lots of twisted meehoon... hehehe...

ruby ahmad said...

So sad Pi, D's hubby passed away this morning. Al-Fatihah.

Daphne Ling said...

Hi Kak Pi,

Maybe you better tell them next time, you do kuey teow, and you do mee! Hehe...So your perut won't overdose...

Hope to follow you during my hols...I will remember not to eat any meehoon if food is part of the visit! ;)

Pi Bani said...

K.Ruby,
Thanks for the info. I've gone over to her blog to convey my condolences.

Daph,
Most of the time, my visits won't involve food (except the ones I bring along). But since this one was a raya visit, the hosts insisted on preparing some food lah. Anyway, dah habis exam ke?

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

kehadapan Kak Pi,

i cant help but to laugh my bums off. so here it goes...

hahahhahaha...

there. i wrote my piece about meehoon some time ago, and farina can even testify to that.

seriously, whats the deal with meehoon that it is being served in practically every single event, meetings, potlucks and even get-together? what happened to the good ol' nasi goreng?

ok la maybe if i'm far away in california like farina, i would appreciate meehoon to bits. but just maybe...

Pi Bani said...

Hey Kerp,
You actually came to mind when I did this posting. Yeah, I remember your posting on this meehoon thingy some time back.

Will be organising a Deepa-Raya gathering next week for our female PLWHAs and their children (saja buat event for the females only so that they will be more open to each other). I will make sure there's no meehoon in the menu!!

kim said...

allo raja bihun! where u get all the energy meh? tonik ape? zikir ape? salut!! selamat raye ye.. maaf zahir batin - kim, pj

Pi Bani said...

Yo Kim!
I makan gamat lah... tu yang gamat ke sana ke mari tu... hehehe... (dari raja bihun jadi raja gamat pulak nanti)

Selamat Hari Raya to you too... ampun maaf segala salah silap kalau ada.

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

Kak Pi,

ok la, maybe its quite understandable for sha and others to serve meehoon, since its affordable and easy to make. and that the perception everyone has is that meehoon is liked by all races. fine there.

for the deepa-raya do, meehoon is a must-have since its an event for everyone but make sure there are rice-based meal also la...hahaha...

*just a simple suggestion, ikut tekak si penuiis comment ini. kahkahh...

Pi Bani said...

No-lah Kerp... I think enough of meehoon for a while. Ikut tekak organiserlah kan... tengoklah nanti what other menus I can come up with (order je lah, bukan I nak masak!). And since the kids are joining too, KFC as well lah kot.

Hazia said...

Lama tak jengok.
Jangan mabuk meehun goreng cukup la Kak Pi, hehe...

Pi Bani said...

Hazia,
Belumlah sampai peringkat mabuk lagi... maybe kalau gi dua tiga rumah lagi and they serve meehoon goreng too haruslah tidur malam pun mimpi lemas dalam meehoon kot... :)