Friday 12th June 2009 - The big day.
I had promised Puan Nur and Sharifah I'd fetch them from the flats at 9 am. 5 minutes before 9 am, I was already there. The moment Puan Nur opened the door, I saw all their bags were ready near the door, and my little Cek Mek sleeping soundly on the settee. Sharifah was ready, only Puan Nur was just about to put on her tudung.
Not wanting to expose the baby outside for too long, for fear of having some kaypohs around asking all sorts of questions, I carried all the bags and arranged them in my car first. Only when everything else was ready, we got out, with Puan Nur holding the baby in her arms, I locked the door and we immediately headed towards my car. No looking left or right. Just move...
First stop was the hypermarket - I wanted to buy supplies for the baby before we send her to her new temporary home. Sharifah waited in the car with her baby; and while I got hold of the diapers, baby's toiletries, rashes cream etc, Puan Nur went to buy toiletries for Sharifah. After paying, I suddenly remembered to ask Puan Nur if they had their breakfast. Laaa... belum rupanya...
Stuff like nasi lemak and roti canai would be difficult to eat in the car, so Puan Nur just ended up buying bread and hot drinks.
The baby slept like a baby (of course la, she IS a baby!) the whole journey. Once or twice when I looked back, even Sharifah slept too. And after a while, even Puan Nur herself was already nodding her head...
After about 1 hour 20 minutes, we reached the town. I called up Kak Ana, the lady in charge of the home to ask for directions. The place was just off the main road, so it wasn't that difficult to find.
The gates were locked, but since Kak Ana was already expecting us, the moment she saw a car stopping in front, she asked one of her staff to open the gates. Before I even managed to drive in, Sharifah was already saying, "Takutlah mak..." Probably the butterflies in her stomach were already flying around like mad...
The place was a bit messy - in the sense that space was rather limited and they were doing some extension works outside the house. According to Kak Ana, the place under extension is supposed to be their new dining hall. At the old place where Kak Ana operated from before, they had more space, so they could even afford to have one sewing room and one physio room. Too bad, the landlord wanted the land back.
Anyway, we (Puan Nur, Sharifah and I) had a good long chat with Kak Ana. Another little girl, about 1 1/2 years old, was so excited when she saw a baby with us. She was smiling and smiling (such a sweet smile too) and even held out her arms, wanting to hold the baby. Before this, she was the youngest occupant of the home - now she has an adik! Oh btw, the occupants of the home call Kak Ana, Mama.
Meanwhile, Sharifah looked real nervous. I told her there was nothing to worry about... at the most Kak Ana... errr... Mama... would only scold her if she does something wrong. But of course, Kak Ana treats them all like her own children, so if they do something wrong, they'd still get the same kind of scolding her own children used to get.
After the chat, and after I noticed that they had already served lunch for the occupants of the home, I signalled to Puan Nur that we'd better make a move. It was then that Kak Ana showed us Sharifah's room - she's sharing the room downstairs with one of Kak Ana's assistants.
Before we left, I went in to give a little peck on the cheeks of my little Cek Mek. Then I gave a hug to Sharifah who was already on the verge of crying. And by the time we got out of the house, when Puan Nur herself gave Sharifah a hug, she couldn't hold back the tears any longer. Kak Ana just said, "Hujan tak pa... jangan tsunami sudah..."
Puan Nur managed to hold back her own tears.
As we drove off, I knew Puan Nur herself felt somewhat guilty about leaving Sharifah and the baby there. But she just needed some time to adjust some things back home before she can bring them home, to be together with the rest of the family. Sharifah should be out of the shelter home in about 2 months time, while the baby will stay there a little bit longer to give time to Sharifah herself to adjust at home. But I made Sharifah promise to visit her baby frequently during that adjustment period.
But looking at how things were just now, I bet Puan Nur herself will be calling me in less than 2 months asking if I could accompany her to visit her child and grandchild. I told her to just call me in advance if she wants to visit so I can make plans. I want to visit my little Cek Mek too!
After sending off Puan Nur to the bus station in Ipoh and making sure she got a ticket to go home, I myself headed home straight away. After my prayer, as I sat back to relax, suddenly I realised... I miss my little Cek Mek already!!!