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.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Interesting number this is...

OK. This is the number at the hits counter when I entered this blogspot just under a minute ago. In terms of how big the number is, it might not be that great. For information this is the first blogspot I started among three more than two years ago. While my second blogspot, the Malay-language CATATAN SI MERAH SILU have already passed 173,000 hits and my third, the bi-lingual SENI LAMA MELAYU (MALAY OLDEN ART) is going to 96,000 at the last count, this one is still languishing in the 40,000 + mark.

Never mind. I find it amusing that I entered the blogspot just under a minute ago to make the 44,444th hit. Otherwise I could have missed the number as despite its low-traffic, it is still often visited and that's enough to move the numbers quite a bit. And I just happened to come in when the counter moved to such a symmetrical number, in fact 5 identical numbers. Hope this augurs well for the future. Cheers! :]

p/s: Later, I was looking for some pictures of Janda Baik when I came across this old article titled My latest trip to Janda Baik and the number 22222! Then I realised, it was written in the same mold as this... except there's a number of pictures. Do have a look...

Monday, April 06, 2009

Remembering the "A" Level college days. Start of the disco fun and girls...

KL Plaza in Bukit Bintang. Behind in the building, there used to exist a very famous disco called Scandals, considered to be the most 'in-thing' if not among the most 'in-thing' disco in the whole of the Klang Valley, at least in the late 1980s...

Greetings all. I think it's time to start remembering the "A' Level college days again. In the last posting on the matter titled Remembering the "A" Level college days. Damansara Utama where the cool days started! made almost over a year ago, I talked about how the Damansara Utama days started with the college boys and girls arranged in a certain manner, by hostel rooms and classes. Then I ended the article with this paragraph...

With that I end this second installment (or is it third?) of "Remembering the 'A' Level college days". For the next one, I think we will talk about the out-of-college exploits including those at the discos and what happened with the girls... as and whenever I feel like it ya, cheers! :]

Just to turn the wheel of time behind a bit. With that, you can refer to the previous related article, Remembering the "A" Level college days. How I got the nickname Fly! OK, I started getting the attention of the girls since day one in orientation, that was in Shah Alam. Particular of note was a certain group of girls which some would say were the most popular of our batch... they tried to get in touch with me for whatever reasons, I just returned with a polite hi! With a bit of a naughty wink... hehe! While I was flattered by the attention, at the time I felt that I should limit my response to a current girlfriend which I met during the last days of my schooling.

I remember showing pictures of this girlfriend to my room-mates during the orientation days. Somehow she looks like a certain Malaysian celebrity by the name of Daphne Iking. Except Daphne hit the scene just under a decade ago or so while I'm talking about events happening some 20 years ago! Anyway let's call her Z ya. While she was probably the first girl I ever seriously thought about getting married to, there's a thing or two about our relationship that often got on my nerves. While her parents have accepted me to the extend that they have acknowledged we might actually get married later in life (I used to freqently bunk at her house, sleeping in her room whenever she's out to school... by then I've finished mine), I'm not happy with the way the mother always took her side whenever we had an argument. And we had argued quite a number of times because I didn't like the fact that a wall in her room was full with greeting cards and such from her admirers.

Yep, Z had plenty of admirers. When it comes to beauty and demeanour, she was probably the most famous girl in her all-girls school and news spread very well around as she became dearly noticed by the boys. I've often spotted her walking to school daintily in her own head-turning style but I would never have thought that we started hitting on each other after an encounter at the local roller-disco, teenage disco for those on skates and roller-blades. Wait a minute... was there any roller-blades during those days? Never mind. Whatever, I do remember enjoying the days going skating with the guys at the roller-disco.

Hmm... while I'm at it, might as well tell the story ya. So there I was at the roller-disco when Z appeared. I can't remember how we actually broke the ice but it started with some eye contact before I helped her skate. Yep, I was definitely the better skater while she had trouble just to keep her balance. In the conversation which ensued, I told her that I am good in mathematics and she asked if I could come to her house to teach her the subject.

A few days later, I came to her house. While I do like her, I was so straight in wanting to see her only to teach mathematics and nothing else as I like to keep my words, literally. Despite the fact that I tend to get naughty, I do believe any future hanky panky should come much later. But it soon became apparent, she wasn't that interested in learning. I mean just look at the way she takes sneak looks at me. I mean woow! Nice smile and nice eyes, plus dimples to boot! Suffice to say, we started talking about other things and soon enough became an item, a very serious item.

And so I went to college to do "A" Levels with Z very much in mind. By then it's been more than a year we were together... and I hardly see any other girl despite the fact that I always liked their attention, en masse! Then again she was still in school, in Form 5 and nearly 200 km down south in our native town of Muar. Oh, and the card thing, the cards from admirers on her wall. Whenever I voiced my discontent about it, she would protest. Then her mother would interject saying she was just being young... it's normal to enjoy the attention. Well, I was jealous. Being her man and officially that too, I couldn't bear the thought of her enjoying attention from other men. You see while I did enjoy getting attention from other girls, I was serious enough about her to actually make the effort of cutting myself off from others. Serious! But when I told her (and the mother...) about this, they would say who asked me to cut myself off? So after a week in Damansara not seeing her while stopping myself from seeing any other girl despite the attention I did get, I sort of flipped...

One weekend, hmm... come to think of it, it was our first weekend in Damansara. Some of the guys were planning on hitting the discos. Oh, by the way I've been to a few discos before, especially the famous Faces in Jalan Ampang (not in existence anymore). It started during the days I ran away from home after the SPM examinations where I bunked at a friend's place in Chow Kit. Back to the weekend in Damansara... the guys were planning on hitting Scandals, a disco I've never known about before. After all, I was not a native of Klang Valley and didn't knew its reputation as the place to be seen at. Whatever, I followed suit...

I remembered going in one car with 7 other guys and girls - 2 in front, the rest, 3 couples at the back. The driver and owner of car was Nash, next to him was another guy Paqua. Hmm, I still couldn't remember if Paqua was staying in same hostel room as me and Nash, that is in room 51C...

OK. I remember Din was with his girlfriend G, Mutt with Notts (now, when did they actually hit it?) and the remaining space was filled with me and... let's just call her Az ya. I can't remember how Az got into the fray but there she was sitting on me inside the car, just like the other girls, Notts and G sitting on the laps of their respective guys. At least Din and G were already couples from their school days while Mutt and Notts actually like each other and was in the process of mating. But me and Az? I seriously couldn't remember how it all started! Except that I was bored and tired trying to stay chaste for my then girlfriend Z who was in Muar... and tired and angry whenever I remember our little arguments before.

And so there we were in Nash's red Honda Accord plying the route to Bukit Bintang. We could have stopped elsewhere, we could have had some drinks first at the local mapley (the street-stalls right in front of our dorms). What I do remember is the car being stopped at a road-block at Jalan Syed Putra, perhaps because we were driving with 8 persons in one car, 6 being in pairs behind with the girls sitting on top of the guys... perhaps. But luckily Nash dealt well with the police and soon we continued on our way.

Oh. Being teenagers that we were, how do you expect us to behave? While Nash kept his eyes on the road, Paqua blushed as the couples started getting intimate. Din and G were an old couple, so they didn't need any cue... Mutt and Notts were getting to know each other, so there. That left me and Az. Well, seeing the others already on the move, I just couldn't help it... after all I was a young hot-blooded male and Az did have her eyes for me, so we hit on famously. With that we went on to Scandals really 'high' on life and that seemed to dictate my mood for the rest of the "A" Level college days. I think that's all for now! :]

Hmm... suddenly I remembered a late meal we had somewhere in mid KL. It was at an open stall. I remember Paqua's face was red all over upon realising that all the while me and Az have been playing footsie under the table. Was that in this outing our another? I can't remember. That's the thing... I forgot a lot of things. I'm doing this series of writings so that I could start to remember as I do believe it is within the tons of old memories there lies some missing pieces that could help me handle the future better or at least provide a proper closure. Cheers!