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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".


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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.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Where Muar river meets Jempol in Negeri Sembilan...

Greetings dear readers.... After 5 days of silence, let's continue the storytelling... With something from my latest (just starting actually) new series of travelling to the East Coast...
By the way, I'm already in the East Coast, currently in Kemaman, Terengganu. But let me show you something very interesting in Negeri Sembilan first ya... At a certain place on the route I decided to take towards the east. Here goes...

Behind a water storage facility in Kampung Jambu Lapan, some 3-4 km before the town of Bahau in Negeri Sembilan lies a rather fascinating place...


Follow a small road behind it and you'll find this...


The upriver parts of the rather mighty Muar river about 100km (or more) from its mouth in the state of Johor...


But the fascinating part lies behind these building and monuments...


So fascinating that it merits a rather prominent representation in the form seen here...


For here lies the meeting of the Muar river with a tributary, the Jempol river. Now, what is so important about this? Read for youself...


You see, the Muar river with its mouth lying some 40km south of the city of Melaka has been an important river lying on major routes of trade and commerce since ancient times, at least since over 1,000 years ago...


Sometime before the Sultanate of Melaka was officially founded (noted by historians to be around the year 1400an or so), a group of people from Pasai in present-day Aceh travelled inland through the Muar river and came across this confluence area...

On the near side is the Jempol river, behind is that of Muar. However please take note, the rivers used to be much wider then and the people from Pasai are believed by some to have settled in this area sometime between the 10th and 12th Century AD!


For here is where one can go from the Muar river into the Jempol river... From there, they can go another 1-2km further inland before coming across a short-route on land where they could enter another river, a river which then connects to the also mighty Pahang river...

Ah... Let me just use this explanation from Wikipaedia ya...

In the old days, Pahang River and Muar River were nearly connected at a place called Jempol, in Negeri Sembilan. This was because the Serting River flows into the Bera River, a tributary of the Pahang River. Jempol River flows into Muar River. Trading boats from River Muar could continue their journey until they reach Kuala Pahang in Pekan, or Kuala Lipis to continue into Terengganu, Kelantan or Perak.
At Jalan Penarikan, the locals help will be required to pull the boats overland. The distance is about 300 meters and because of the pulling of boats overland, the route is named Penarikan, which is the Malay word for pulling.
Jalan Penarikan could have been discovered in the 14th century, way before the days of Malacca Empire. The Arab merchants were actively trading as well as spreading Islam. When Malacca was discovered, they came to Malacca for trade and at the same time; the
Pasai came to Malacca too to acquire their daily sundries. Coincidently, these are the same group of people whom they spread the religion to. The Arabs complained to the Pasai about the trials and tribulations of trading in Siam because of the arduous journey through the Strait of Malacca, then on the Straits of Terbrau before they can continue the voyage through the South China Sea towards their destination in Siam. This voyage which take weeks is extremely lengthy and difficult. After listening to the grouses of the Arab merchants, the Pasai revealed that there was a short cut where they could avoid the arduous voyage.
However, they have to pull their boats off shore for a kilometer or so. Learning of this, the Arabs endeavoured to try out this route. One day, the Pasai show this route to the Arabs. First, they sailed from Malacca along the Muar River to reach Jempol River, where they have to pull the boats on shore for a short distance to get into the Serting River. They then continue their journey along the Bera River to arrive at Kuala Bera from which they proceeded to the South China Sea via Pahang River — and finally to their destination in Siam. The Arabs discovered that even though they have to go on land for a part of the journey, it was very much shorter. So from that day onwards, they decided to use this route and Jalan Penarikan became famous ever since.
Jalan Penarikan played a vital role in the military operations between Siam and Malacca. Using this route, the Siamese have launched many attacks against Malacca. A troop was sent to make an ambush. Half of the troop stayed near Jalan Penarikan as backup and the other half attacked Malacca. However, the backup group has another mission, they have to dig a big canal measuring 30 feet by 20 feet in depth, so that they could connect the two rivers, Jempol and Serting River.
A leader of the Thai Army was later buried near Jalan Penarikan. The tombstone was believed to have been transported all the way from Thailand. The Siamese leader's grave could still be found near Jalan Penarikan. One interesting feature of the tombstone is that the year depicted was 1265.
Jalan Penarikan has also witnessed many significant events in history. The famous Malaccan warrior Hang Tuah, while on the run with Tun Teja, used Jalan Penarikan to flee to Pahang. The last Sultan of Malacca, Sultan Mahmud Shah, after the conquest of Malacca by the Portuguese had also used Jalan Penarikan to escape to Pahang.
In the year 1613, a Portuguese officer wrote that he took a boat from the River Muar to the Pekan, in Pahang and the journey took him six days. A map produced in 1598 showed that the Muar River and the Pahang River is connected at a place which is now called Serting, in Jempol Negeri Sembilan.
The Pahang River - Muar River route is a safer route to the South China Sea or to the Straits of Malacca, because there were no disturbances and threats of piracy that reign the seas.
Apart from that there were also signs of trading activities, whereby goods changed hands at this point. These means the boats from Pahang with the produce they carry stopped here, transact and pick up goods that are east bound and return back to Pahang. Similarly, boats from Muar, bringing goods from Malacca and Singapore were brought to Penarikan, where barter trade occurred.


I'm sorry if my way of story-telling is disturbed. The computer I'm using at a Cyber-Cafe in Kemaman, Terengganu is just too painfully slow. Still, the story-telling must go on. So I used this bridge to cross the river Jempol...


I wanted to have a good look at the "penisular" which is where the rivers Muar and Jempol first meet...

Here's a look from the hut at the "penisular"...


Then I felt like crossing the Muar river...


Except, the journey across is much much more harder...


Nevertheless I safely did it. Here's a look at the confluence from the other side. That's all! Cheers! :]

2 comments:

Sulaiman said...

Very interesting piece Tuan. I would appreciate copies of all that you took of the Muar and Jempol river. We are about to do a study of this very mighty river. I shall meet with you to discuss it further if you have the time. Prof Sulaiman Yassin, IPSAS, UPM. 0199346103

Radzi Sapiee said...

Hmm. Just noticed this comment. I would be glad to meet you about the river. In fact I've posted new articles about the river Muar particular the upriver just recently.
However I couldn't yet commit the time for a proper talk. Meanwhile feel free to use the pictures available, with credits due ya. Cheers! :]