This blogspot is a medium to share my thoughts and adventures apart from promoting my books. Below are the books which have been written or authored and published by myself.

"Berpetualang ke Aceh: Mencari Diri dan Erti".

ISBN 983-42031-0-1, Jun 2006

"Berpetualang ke Aceh: Membela Syiar yang Asal"

ISBN 983-42031-1-x, May 2007

"Berpetualang ke Aceh: Sirih Pulang ke Gagang?"

ISBN 978-983-42031-2-2, November 2007

It is interesting to note that while these books were written in Malay it has gained enough attention to merit being part of the collections of the American Library of Congress and National Library of Australia. Look here and here.

While the first three books were published by my own company, the fourth titled "Rumah Azan" was published in April 2009 by a company called Karnadya with the help of the Malaysian national literary body Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka. It features beautiful pictures along with stories behind selected mosques which could be related to the history of Islam and the Malays alongside the formation of the Malaysian nation. Look at the article A collaboration of old collegemates - the book "Rumah Azan".

My fifth book "Ahlul Bait (Family) of Rasulullah SAW and Malay Sultanates", an English translation and adaptation of the Malay book "Ahlul Bait (Keluarga) Rasulullah SAW dan Kesultanan Melayu" authored by Hj Muzaffar Mohamad and Tun Suzana Othman was published early 2010. Look here... My 5th book is out! Ahlul Bait (Family) of Rasulullah SAW and the Malay Sultanates... . For more information check out my Malay blogspot CATATAN SI MERAH SILU.

Like my fourth book "Rumah Azan", the sixth book "Kereta Api Menuju Destinasi" is also a coffee-table book which is published by the company Karnadya with the cooperation of Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (the main Malay literary body in Malaysia). Coming out January 2011 it features pictures and stories on the adventure travelling by train to all of Peninsular Malaysia along with the interesting places which could be reached this way.

My seventh book "Jejak keluarga Yakin : Satu sketsa sejarah" in turn is a coffee-table book which is written, editted, designed and has pictures taken by me. Coming out of the factory October 2011, this book which combines family history with history of places such as Singapura, Johor, Batu Pahat, Muar and in fact the history of the island of Java and England has been reviewed with me interviewed live in the program Selamat Pagi Malaysia at RTM1. Look at the article Siaran langsung ulasan buku "Jejak keluarga Yakin : Satu sketsa sejarah" dan temu ramah di Selamat Pagi Malaysia. Some selected contents have been featured in Sneak peek "Jejak keluarga Yakin : Satu sketsa sejarah".


The "Berpetualang ke Aceh" series of novels could be obtained in e-book form. Enter http://www.e-sentral.com/, click general novel and go to page 4. You can also type the word "Aceh" at the search box. Or click straight Book 1, Book 2 and Book 3.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Lamenting a lost

It's too soon in the game for me the to be able to make this blog kinder to my quite discerning eyes... At this juncture, I don't know any HTML and I sure don't know how to put pictures anywhere at all in this website, much less within the confines of the box which contains the title "Berpetualang ke Aceh" which I think would look infinitely much nicer if contrasted against a background of greens and mountains...

Nevertheless, I'll figure that out as I go along and God willing, I'll show you some nice pictures (at least it look nice to me...) to share...

Meanwhile, let me present to you this article in The New Straits Times I wrote some 8 years ago expressing my regret after losing someone very dear to me... So much so that until today memories of her and the love we used to share but spoilt by my own evils haunt me once in a while, forever reminding me never to go back to my old freewheeling days ever again. So hear goes, as fetched from the NST archives -

Publication : NST-LTIMES 
Edition :2*
Date : 30/03/1998
Page Number : 07
Headline :Too late for regrets after losing loved one
Words : 1037
Byline : By Radzi Sapiee
Column Name : First person
Text :

IT'S true what people say: you often don't realise the true worth of someone's love until it's too late. It took the recent marriage of a girl whom I consider as my soulmate and best friend to realise that.

I remember that fateful weekend. I was about to leave my aunt's place for the office when she broke the news: "You know your old flame is getting married this Friday?"

I hadn't heard anything from her for the last six months and now she's getting tied? Suddenly I felt all funny and queasy inside. We broke off (for the finaltime) more than a year ago. I should not be feeling this way. Still, I managed to utter a feeble "Send her my congratulations" to my aunt before making my way back to the office.

Suddenly, vivid memories of our first meeting came to mind. Feb 9, 1991. We were comparing our old bags. She had hers since her primary school days in the US while I had mine when I first went to boarding school. That was when we started to feel a strong bond together.

Before long, we were so in love, sharing bedtime stories, hopes and dreams that I even asked my parents and hers to consent to us getting married. We were then just three months into our relationship and about to fly to Britain for further studies. I was 20, she was 19. So the family said no. Besides, her parents found me too wild.

Nevertheless I felt ready to settle down. I even withdrew from my social circle, hoping to put a stop to my freewheeling days. We went to Britain a contented couple. But the bliss soon gave way to ugliness. My old wants began to resurface. Here I was totally in love with this beautiful girl but somehow the relationship lacked the spice I used to get from others. Being simple, she was not exposed to the art of flirtation that I find alluring.

Still trying to be faithful, I found myself turning grumpy and abusive, blaming her for every problem that came between us. I thought I was the one who had got the raw deal since I used to be the popular guy in school and college while she had always kept a low profile. So I kept shunning her every time she brought up marriage. And as the years passed by and I saw no end to our problems, I started seeing other women.

But still hoping things would work out, she somehow was willing to turn a blind eye to my gallivanting. The crunch, however, came when I got seriously involved with another. It was so serious that I spent almost two months alternating between the two girls. And they both knew about it.

Still, she was ready to forget that episode on one condition. "Promise me you will never again get involved with another girl," she asked. I loved her, but I just couldn't make that promise. So I let her go when she asked for a break, ending more than six years of relationship. She went home crying. I thought it was for the best. And I kept being indifferent even when she said she was seeing a potential suitor and that he had insisted we sever contacts a few months ago.

It had to take the news of her coming marriage to jolt me out of my smugness. She had always said that we couldn't even stay friends if she married someone else as the emotions and memories would be too much to bear. That was when I realised I was going to lose my soulmate, best friend and `wife'.

Trying to calm myself, I took my bike and rode along Jalan Gombak, heading for Pahang the next day, armed with a rucksack and a sleeping bag. Old memories kept coming back even when I tried to sleep on a bench in the open in Genting Highlands. I thought I would just ride on the next day but as fate would have it, I returned to Kuala Lumpur. I had this strong urge to see how the marriage preparations were coming along.

But surprise, surprise, that night was the wedding night! I was totally fazed and dumbfounded. There sitting on the bike, parked on the roadside next to her house, it dawned on me. I had been blaming her for my problems, my loss of self-confidence and everything that had gone wrong. Suddenly I realised how much of a fool I had been.

All the while, she had been waiting for me to take the lead while I tried to find zest in other women. The urge to barge into the house and tell her how wrong I was, how mean I had been to her and how sorry I was was building up. But no. That could jeopardise her new-found happiness. Enough of hurting her. Instead I stayed on, eyeing the proceedings, silently crying my heart out until all the guests had gone home. At least I was happy that she had finally got her wish to be married.

Still I needed to let go of her properly. I needed to cry freely and openly. The next night, as I sat in my office waiting for my night shift to finish, her face came back to haunt me and all the things that I wished I could have said to her. How I wish I could have at least hugged and kissed her for the last time and taken her for a ride on my bike which I bought after we broke off.

Mas, I'm sorry for being so mean, for being selfish, for not recognising your love for its true worth. I'm sorry for not being faithful, for hurting you so much, for taking you for granted.

I regret not telling you how beautiful you are. I miss the bedtime stories, the pinky shakes, the special hugs, even the fights, as much as you used to miss my noisy guitars, smelly shirts and constant request for a scratch in the back. My baby squirrel, my love, now I can finally let you go. Bye, bye sayang. (END)

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