Hmmm…. I said earlier I was done with my back-to-school shopping, no? Did I miss any kid that I had to do another round of shopping this morning?
Well, this one wasn’t so much of a back-to-school shopping, but a going-to-culinary-school shopping for Azman, Sofie’s son. If you recall, Azman had wanted to quit school after his PMR and start working. But I managed to coax him to join a culinary school instead, seeing his interest in cooking. He agreed. And after arranging this and that, I finally managed to secure a place for him at a culinary school, paid for the registration etc, just waiting for them to call for the start of the semester for the next cohort.
Meanwhile, I needed to bring Azman to buy some stuff before he goes off to the culinary school. I asked the lady at the school earlier about their dress code and was told that for certain occasions, he’d need to wear shirt and slacks, while certain classes he can wear collared t-shirts. In addition, he needs to wear shoes. No sandals, no slippers. I asked Azman if he had any of those. He has 2 pairs of collared t-shirts – that’s it! Other than his school shoes and uniforms, he’d usually be wearing round-neck t-shirts and faded jeans with sandals or slippers.
Yesterday I told Sofie to make sure Azmi gets ready before 10 am – I’d be fetching him to bring him shopping. I got to the town just before 10 am, and on the way to their house, I noticed Azman was with Sofie at her nasi lemak stall. So I didn’t have to go to their house after all (the house wasn’t that far anyway). Sofie’s 2 younger kids were at home. Great, I thought, I had wanted to have a one-to-one talk with Azman, without any of his younger siblings tagging along.
So off we went to a nearby supermarket. On the way, I asked him again if he really, really wanted to go to the culinary school. His mother is afraid he may go through it halfway and quit, because he had always been fickle-minded in school matters before. I think I probably am more confident in him than his own mother – Sofie based it on Azman’s previous fickle-mindedness while I based it on Azman’s interest in culinary matters.
Me: Makcik dah bayar duit pendaftaran, duit uniform semua dah. Jangan nanti tiba-tiba separuh jalan gatal nak berhenti pulak.
Azman: Tak, saya belajar sampai habis.
He’d better make good his promise…
Anyway, the supermarket just opened when we got there. Immediately we headed to the gent department. First up, to get 2 pairs of slacks, black in colour. Well, Azman is rather chubby, but short. So we just chose the sizes based on his waist, the length can be shortened later. The old mechanical sewing machine that I gave to them some time ago is still working, so either Sofie or Azman himself can adjust the length later at home. Then 2 pairs of collared t-shirts, followed by 2 pairs of shirts. Finally, a pair of shoes. All done is just about half an hour because Azman himself isn’t the fussy type, unlike his 2 younger siblings. Anything too expensive, he’d just put back, and when I asked him to choose the shoes, he just opted for the cheaper pair. 2 pairs of slacks, 2 pairs of shirts, 2 pairs of collared t-shirts, and one pair of shoes = RM240. Just about the average amount spent for the other children’s back-to-school shopping earlier.
By the time we headed back to Sofie’s stall, she was already packing up with her daughter Ika helping her out. It was about 10.45 am by then and according to Sofie, usually by that time there wouldn’t be any more customers. So although there were still some more nasi lemak, she usually packs up at before 11 am. I decided to stop so that Azman could help as well. Just then one last customer came to buy 2 nasi lemak and so Ika & Azman helped to pack the 2 nasi lemak at RM1 each – a cup of rice, some sambal, kacang goreng, cucumber and a small piece of ikan masin.
Anyway, since I was there, I offered to carry the big umbrella in my car. Usually they’d bring it home on her motorbike. I got to their house first together with Azman. Saiful was just about getting ready to go to the stall to help pack up. Just a few minutes later Sofie got home together with Ika. I immediately said to Ika, “Nasi lemak satu!” “Kejap,” she replied, “nanti bagi special punya!”
So yeah, I got my nasi lemak special – served in a plate, with stainless steel fork & spoon, extra sambal, one whole egg, and a glass of ice drink to add. Not bad… no wonder people like to order from her… either nasi lemak or whatever kuih.
Unlike the other customers who had to pay RM1 for each pack of nasi lemak, I got my nasi lemak special for free….
at the end of it, I actually passed to Sofie RM200 donated by a blog reader, so the nasi lemak special was worth RM200 for her. Only thing was, I was the one who got to eat the nasi lemak instead of the donor… :)