Sunday, September 28, 2008

Raise your hand

I have told you earlier about how Mrs Fath can come up with some words that somehow would trigger some neurons in my puny brain. Today I feel very moved to tell you what she said quite sometime ago.

It was during a morning coffee at one of the lady's house, Mrs Fath told us about her experience going for a jemaah prayer in one of the mosques here. After praying, she performed the nawafil prayers, doing dzikir and made du'a as usual (based on what I usually see her do). And after she completed the routine, an arab lady approached her.

The arab lady said why do you make du'a like that. Then she proceeded to explain that when one makes du'a, one should really raise their hands. Raise your hands like as if you are begging. Beg like a slave to your Lord. After all that is what we are, slaves to Allah. Not cup it to your mouth. Where is the determination?

After Mrs Fath told us this story, the other ladies started talking about how one should make a du'a. Which hand gesture is the best.And they broke into laughter at various ways people put up their hands. Also that some people say that we really should put our hands together and cup it so that Allah's mercy would not escape, like as if we are catching the mercy.

Mrs Fath did not realise that what she said affected me alot. It really dawned one me that we are truly the servants of Allah. I mean i know we are hamba Allah, but somehow the word hamba Allah has become a cliche. It's an overused word. I know I am a hamba Allah, but it doesn't mean anything. It just meant that I am just another creation.

What I had been all these while is really an arrogant slave. One who thinks that when she makes du'a, it will always be fulfilled. After all, benda ni biasalah, habis sembahyang aje doa. Hari-hari pun benda yang sama. dah hafal macam routine. Sesekali ada tambah benda baru sikit yang special nak diminta.

Tak terfikir pun, adakah layak doa aku ini di makbulkan.

And when I put up my hand like a slave and beg for his mercy and beg for his blessings, then only I can feel how small I am. Unworthy of anything from Allah.

I worry. Oh no! I feel so lost. I beg. I pray. O! Allah! You are most forgiving O Allah, You love forgiving O Allah, Forgive me O Allah. *.

And I repeat them numerous time.

I feel that I do not deserve any of Allah's attention nor mercy.

None at all.

But I am holding on that Allah's is merciful. And that he Accepts repentance. He is most Loving.

O Allah! You are most merciful o Allah. I beg you for forgiveness. I feel that I do not deserve your mercy but I am afraid. O Allah grant me your mercy O Allah ...

And the word Hamba Allah has a totally different light after that.

*One of the best du’aa’s that may be recited on Laylat al-Qadr is that which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) taught to ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her). Al-Tirmidhi narrated, and classed the report as saheeh, that ‘Aa’ishah said: “I said, ‘O Messenger of Allaah, if I know which night is Laylat al-Qadr, what should I say on that night?’ He said, ‘Say: Allaahumma innaka ‘afuwwun tuhibb al-‘afwa fa’affu ‘anni (O Allaah, You are forgiving and You love forgiveness, so forgive me).”

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Apa Nama Dia?

Kita ni kan Goddesss. duduk rumah. Masak. Jaga anak. cebok berak budak. Kemas rumah. Kalau kita keluar rumah pun pasal hantar budak ambik budak. Mana kita ada jumpa adult sangat. Kita borak dengan cikgu-cikgu bebudak aje.

Pastu pulak kita ni pemalas dan tak ada masa sebenarnya nak calling-calling orang. Eiii sebok tau. Kalau calling mana boleh 1 2 minit. Ada lah dekat setengah jam berbual. Baik kita hop hop blog ke bukumuka ke.

Jadi sesekali bila ada function kat sini, barulah kita jumpa orang. Maka faham-faham je lah lama lah sikit berbual dengan mereka di celah-celah ambik gambar tu.

Seboklah jugak lover ajak kita balik. Aik! Selalunya saya yang kena kasi hint nak balik. Tapi susahlah nak elak orang, jalan seinci jumpa yang lama tak jumpa. Nak buat camana. Mereka tu semuanya femes. kenalah tegur.

Ada one lady ni, selalulah pulak kita jumpa dia. Memang boleh click betullah kita dengan dia ni kalau berbual. Cerita pasal anak. cerita pasal macam-macamlah. Memang kalau jumpa dia gerenti tak hi hi bye bye.

Lover kata, baik betul awak dengan dia.

Ah ah I like talking to her. Kita jawab dalam bahasa omputeh.

Dari dulu awak borak dengan dia. Beria-ia betul. Ketawa. Bisik-bisik. Apa nama dia? Dah ingat?

Errrrr...kita still tak ingatlah. Huhuhu

Tanyalah woi!

Malulah kita. Dia tau nama kita.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Filling it

During this Ramadhan month, I go out of the house at 7 in the morning to send the kids to school, and only reach home at 9. (I say ramadhan because the school starts later during the Ramadhan time which otherwise it usually starts at 7:15)

And I would go out again at 12, to fetch the kids, and only reach home at 2.

The usual 15-20 minutes car-ride would now take me nearly one hour one way. This is because everybody starts work/ school at later time and everyone is rushing out clogging the road. The same as going home time. many offices stops work earlier too.

Pendek kata (whoever this pendek is) jalan memang jam. Queing up at the traffic light takes a longer time. Roundabout needs more stunt action.

However, I enjoy it. because I have with me in my CD player lecture cds by Imam Anwar Alawlaki to listen to. The one I am listening to at the moment is The Lives of the Prophets.

I have always love reading about the prophets (peace be upon all of them) and I just realised that some of the stories are injected with myths and legends and stories from the Israelites. Imam Anwar AlAwlaki's lecture is mainly based on Ibn Kathir's work which relies on the Quran and the Sunnah.

Praise to Allah that Imam Anwar is given the ability of eloquence and knowledge, that his lectures are very filling to the heart. I learned tremendous (and itu baru satu tajuk aje tu). One of the things I learned is the bigger message from the lecture. THAT CERITA NABI BUKAN SETAKAT CERITA AJE CIK AKAK OIIII!!!

It has bigger message for us to learn as guidance.

Last night during breaking fast, of which I fried quails (KFC style). Haziq asked could this quail be salwa as in the manna and salwa (the heavenly food that Allah bestowed to the children of Israel when they were wondering around for forty years not entering Jerusalem. Cerita nabi Musa a.s. Surah Al-A'raaf:160)

We revealed to Musa (Moses) when his people asked him for water (saying): ‘Strike the stone with your stick’, and there gushed forth out of it twelve springs, each group knew its own place for water. We shaded them with the clouds and sent down upon them Al‑Manna and Salwa (saying): ‘Eat of the good things with which We have provided you.’ They harmed Us not but they used to harm themselves.” [al-A’raaf 7:160]

Is this the special food, Haziq asked? I said perhaps. The scholars said it is quail. Allah knows best.

Then haziq said why didn't Allah describe how it is cooked it in detail so we can cook the same. I asked him why? What would it do you good for even if you know? Allah sends us the Quran so we can learn from it. All the small details that are not included wouldn't be of any benefit to us in terms of our faith even if we know.

Imam Anwar Al Awlaki didn't exactly say it like that but he said the Quran is sent down for guidance thus the story which is in Quran has purpose. Quran didn't tell about life stories of how they grow up or what they like to play or even the dates and such because it wouldn't be of great benefit to us. Allah tells the patience of Nabi so we can learn to be like them. Allah tells how they strive in their daawah so we can appreciate that we are muslims. And many more.. (bukan quote verbatim)

Anywaaaayyy, I have a few collections of the Imam CDs hopefully to last me many more jams. They are

The life of Muhammad - Makkan period
The hereafter
Abu Bakar Al Sidiq His life and Times
Ummar Ibn AlKhattab

But he has many more interesting CDs. check it out HERE. However, I just noticed that many of the CDs there can be downloaded for free. I strongly would urge all of you who are interested in the CDs to purchase them when you can afford them i.e. in terms of money and if you find the CDs in the store. I purchased mine through a friend when he did his umrah. Perhaps you can do the same. Another link to purchase the CDs are here.

Fill your ears and fill your heart and may your knowledge increase.

I look forward to road jams and long queus now. Tee hee (kecuali minyak kereta nak habis)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Ibu Ayam

You should see the war zone I had to endure through each time I pick up the kids from school (now that they are all in the same school). As usual cars would double and even triple and zig zag park everywhere. And cars would come out from the wrong side of the road and jolt you!

I would hold on tight to jack's hand. Also holding an umbrella (panas tau) and carrying Jack's bag. Sya and Haziq close behind me. You would see me barking giving instructions to the kids now and then. Cross now! Move faster. Go through here. STOP!

And they HOOOOOOOOOOOOONNNKKKKK. And some of them shout! And sometimes people get angry. What a scene!

And when you think you are safe on the pedestrian walkway, suddenly a car zoommed just inches from you. On the walkway! They also come from different directions!

And we are talking about big SUVs. Powerful 4WDs. Big, fast, strong cars. All taller than the kids. All taller than me for God's sake.

And I would try to quickly slid in front of the parking cars. Glancing if there is a driver in there, I would highlight that kids are tagging behind me. Stop moving! We would snake around the helter skelter as fast as we can. Drench under the hot sun.

I look like an Ibu ayam you know. You know the game Ibu ayam dengan musang (Hen and chicks and the fox) that we used to play when we were kids? Yeah I am that Ibu ayam. All alert and eyes all over for those hungry foxes! The kids tagging all around me totally depending on me. Everyday I tell you.

Oh well, at 36 today (if you are reading this on the 18th) this ibu ayam is thankful that she can see humor in well nearly most things.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Garangao Sweets

qatarGarangao is a celebration that is traditionally held in the Gulf area on the 14th day of Ramadan. It has no religious connotations. This evening, children, clad in their traditional clothes, will come out of their homes and knock on every door in their neighbourhood, which will be ready to receive them with sweets and nuts. They collect the goodies in the special cotton bags, hanging loosely from their necks. Kids will be seen wandering around the streets until late into the night singing the special Garangao song.

I have seen some of the kids around my area with their mothers walking behind them. A real fancy sight because these little arab children are terribbly cute especially in their colourful traditional clothes.

And usually in school they would celebrate garangao as well. the school would encourage the children to wear the national costume. My kids pakai baju rayalah apa lagi. Begitulah setiap tahun. You really should see the arab kids' traditional attire. The girls particularly. The wear the brightest and fanciest clothes with gold adornment and trimmings and gold headgear. really festive feeling.

I explained to Jack's teacher that this is not a muslim thing. This is only an arab culture. We, the south east asian muslim counterparts, do not have garangao. Ohhhh what do you do then, she asked? Err nothing. It's the same thing like any other fasting night.

The school would also encourage parents to bring some goodies and chocolates to be distributed in school. And every year I would get the kids a small box of Quality Street chocolates to give away.

And what do we get in return? A biigg bag of mixed chocolate and nuts and goodies!! For each child! And this year we get three big bags of them!

Ohh I do dread this day because suddenly we get an overdose of those sweets that I really prefer the kids to refrain from. And I would quickly separate the nuts into a container. Good chocs (expensive) and bad chocs (cheap). Bubble gum falls under bad choc category. Put the good chocs in the fridge with a warning not to be eaten unless called otherwise and the bad choc in a bag to be put in lover's office and eaten by any of his guests.

So this has also become our annual affair. Our garangao is celebrated by carefully picking nuts, good chocs and bad chocs and also listening to the kids claiming which one is good and which one is not. The kids would also fight for the toys which haziq would usually lose.

That was quite a festival by itself.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Nasib Orang Merantau

!! من فضلك
الرجاء عدم الوقوف هنا
سوف نبلغ الشرطة


let me highlight to you some of the words

من فضلك - please
الوقوف هنا - park here
وألا - or else
الشرطة - the police

One glance you might think it says, Pleasepark here or else police will come or something.

alas it means totally the opposite. basically the whole paragraph means

Please don't park here or we'll call the police.

This note was put on my lover's windscreen. He parks near this local guy's house. Not blocking anything. Next to his tall wall. Normal scene at any residential place. Personally I don't think the police has jurisdiction here.

But who are we? Menumpang sahaja.

Well at least they said Min Fadlik ( please).

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

My Father Said

"The joy of seeing you and the kids back is short lived knowing that you will leave again.

Baru aje nak lepas rindu dah kena balik. Susah rasanya nak train balik perasaan ni."

I know the feeling.

Jumpa lagi in 10 months time, Insya Allah. We are all missing you.

P/s : Haziq wrote in his introductory composition yesterday, places he likes to visit : Grandfather and grandmother's house. :D


Monday, September 08, 2008

First Day at School

Yesterday was the first day of school this term for the kids. It was a drag (for me) after two months of blissful dormant mode.

The news is, this year round I am sending all the three kids to the same school. This was mainly because Sya's school fees has increased to 60% more which if I stayed there I would have to top up. It was a sad thing to leave and a bit of drama too.

You see, Zachary was already accepted in Sya 's school (after entrance test and all) and I had paid deposit of QR5000 to secure a place. However later on, they announced the hike in the fees which sent my lover to jittery. Thankfully I made back-up plan for Sya and Jack. I applied for a placement at Haziq's school. They sat through an entrance test, (which batrisyia failed last two years. remember?) read HERE.(roll eyes. And they were accepted.

I initially did not want to move sya and Jack. I love Sya's school. Sya already establish friends there. But finally, I gave up because lover is certainly not happy to fork up his money to put them in the school.

The next trouble was they refuse to return the deposit and in fact demanded half of Batrisyia's term 1 year 2008/09 fees, which was another QR5000. Without this, sya will not be given a release report of which without it, the company will not pay any money to the new school.

I wrote a long love letter highlighting also my active participation in school for voluntary reading and all. Finally they agreed and charged me only (bleargh) QR2,500 which otherwise would have been QR10,000.

kidsAnyway they are all now in the new school.

Jack was excited and woke up super early. What is not to be excited about?

New shirt. Same like abang's

New trousers. Just like abang's

New bag. Spiderman

New black shoes. Same like everyone.

And the best thing is everyone is going to the same school.

When in school, then only jack found out going to the same school does not mean they are in the same class! When I came back to check jack out after sending Sya and haziq in, I was told that he wept. i was also advised to not let myself be seen by him.

The teacher told me that he wept twice and was very quiet.

he also peed in his pants! HORRORS!!

kidsThis morning going to school was not really an exciting event for Jack. I sat with him for a while. Ask him to take some toys to play with. I asked him whether he was going to cry. he said no. Will he quickly go to the loo if he wants to pee, he said yes. I kissed him and all the drill.

Then I stood outside watching him. Another boy supposedly sitting at his table was wailing and grabbing his father.

Jack sat quietly, hands playing with his block but eyes looking at the wailing boy. And I saw tears were welling in his eyes. He tried hard to control it, but still it trickled down on his cheeks. There he was, still fiddling with the block, weeping on his own, in the midst of the chaos in the class.

I wanted so much to go and hug him. But I know that wouldn't be a good move. But I felt like crying seeing him so lonely there. Couldn't stand it any longer, I called out to him. But Jack didn't want to look at me.

I think he didn't want me to know he is crying. Perhaps tak macho nanti? Perhaps he didn't want to disappoint me.

certainly a different scene from last year's first day at school. Read it HERE.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Dah Sampai

Alhamdullilah, we all reached Qtar safely.

I think my two months balik kampung was very fulfilling. I get to to do what I wanted to do. Bought things I want to buy, tudungs, a few skirts, baju sikit, rempah ratus yang BANYAK, books dan barang-barang kecantikan (oh oh mukaku naik jerawat macam dulu balik dah ni!!) and meet people, if not all, that I wanted to rekindle.

So sangat puas.

But the want that I was most relieved about was that I managed to sell our mengancam red sport Mazda Premacy. That was done at almost our last week in Malaysia. Funny, after it was sold I got many more calls asking about the car. I even got a call yesterday when I was already in Qtar.

Alhamdullilah also, this time round we were not charged for overweight luggage. Legaa. Partly because we are sharing five tickets instead of four last year. And also the other factor was, I put all the heavy books in my hand luggage. I think that was the best strategy against being charged QR60 per kilo for overweight luggage.

And now I am back in this hot barren land. Adusdus. We reached here at 530 in the morning and it was like 11 in the morning in Malaysia. We took a cab to our friend's place to get our cars (which are parked at his place for safekeeping since they have a biiiigggg house that can accommodate four cars) . Unfortunately we forgot to charge our Qtar hp. So we were stranded in front of his house not able to call him. His door bell is not working also. Talk about irony

I had my msia phone though, but somehow when I transfered the QTAR sim card to my old phone, it was not able to read the data. So we had to make calls to other people to find my friend's number. There we were melting under the hot sun. Nampak macam pelarian with all our big bags and boxes. Finally after we have melt halfway, we managed to get our friend. Pack our bags and go back to our dusty home. Mak oi macam balik setahun.

And our fridge broke down. Huwaaaaaaaa. And landlord refuse to replace them. Macam-macam alasan putar alam. Double huwaaaaaa.

Pastu pastu tengah unpack unpack black outlah pulak. We had to go out. Mostly because panas gila tak ada aircond. And also we had to go and buy a fridge (we will only get it on Saturday, so still takleh masak besar nampaknya) and we went to get the kids' uniform.

Batrisyia who was fasting finally tak tahan. She cried a bit under the hot sun. So she buka air in the car which I brought because I am a mother and I suspect this would happen. Seriously first time I came to Qtar fasting here is definitely a challenge. Lethargic and dehydrated. Oh panasnya. Oh teriknya. Oh hausnya.

O' Allah bless my children. Bless batrisyia sampai nangis because tak tahan tapi nak puasa gak.

*sigh* I almost cried when we landed. I miss Malaysia and everyone I love.