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, July 02, 2008

Remembering the "A" Level college days. Damansara Utama where the cool days started!

A picture of the shoplots near Uptown Damansara nabbed from the Internet. We used to study and stay in a few blocks of the same shoplots...

Greetings earthlings. Time to start reminiscing again. Continued from the posting Remembering the "A" Level college days. How I got the nickname Fly! made a week ago. Before that, just take note. A friend commented that we did our college orientation week at Section 6 in Shah Alam, not Section 2 as mentioned in the posting. This friend also noted some happenings involving other friends which I have totally forgotten... and it's when I looked back at the article did I remember, we shared the same orientation and temporary rooms with the TESL (those slated to take up university level course for Teaching of English as a Second Language) guys and girls. So that amounts to around 600 of us having to suffer the week there as the TESL people far outnumbered the A Level folks by having twice our number!

Anyway, soon enough the orientation was done and it's time for some serious fun. While the TESL guys had to stay behind in Shah Alam, I think at Section 18 or something, in some PKNS flats (behind fences to boot!), we the A Level people got to move to Damansara Utama where the regular shoplots there became our classrooms and dorms. Not only there's no fences around, there's plenty of entertainment and night-life to boot including pubs and snooker parlours!

This was where our college life got a real fine kickstart and the whole popularity game (chasing girls and getting to enjoy the skirts, know what I mean and such) got off to a whole new level. But first, let's get down to earth. Let's get to the soonest arrangement upon reaching there, of settling down in a room and becoming room-mates for at least the next one year or so...

I think's there's a total of nearly 30 rooms for the guys and slightly less for the girls. Hmm. Perhaps that included the rooms for the seniors, the guys and girls of Batch 6 while me and my mates, the class of 1988 are of Batch 7.

OK. I got into room 51 C. The inmates were (let me just mention the nicknames unless there's none ya) Nash, Fique, Atoque, Adik, Amirul, Apeq, Jim, John, King, Mangor, Salleh, Tonga, Rashes, Zain, Mutt and. Hmm... I think Paqua was also in the same room. OK, that makes 17 of us right? Unless I've forgotten someone, please tell. Anyway, on the whole every room in the A Level PPP/ITM college at Damansara Utama housed about 15 to 20 inmates. So there...

That by the way is the division by rooms. The next was division by classrooms...

Overall, the A Level people could be divided into the arts and science stream students following the system from school followed by the choices made for our intended degree program and how we fare during the SPM examinations in Form Five. Except for those chosen to go straight to the United Kingdom under the BTU (British Top University programmes), we were practically the cream of the crop of the whole Malaysian educations system and that's no exaggeration! Among us where the best from the top residential schools like Malay College in Kuala Kangsar, Perak and Kolej Tunku Kursiah in Seremban, Negeri Sembilan or the top regular schools like Victoria Institution in Kuala Lumpur and Sri Aman in Petaling Jaya.

I myself was among those called for the BTU interviews. Not that my SPM results were great... I got a total aggregate of 14 while most of those who got called made aggregates of 6, notwithstanding the fact that I hardly studied for the exams. In fact after fighting with dad, I ran away from home during the SPM itself but managed to attend the exams while bunking at a friend's place in Muar for several days!

Perhaps it was my good results in Mathematics that qualified me to be called for the BTU interviews. Nevertheless I didn't make the final cut but getting called for the interview means you would at least qualify for the A Level PPP/ITM program without any further processing, that is you would automatically get to do the A Levels locally before flying overseas.

You see, the standard of those who made the cut for the BTU interview was so high that anyone regardless of how well they did in the interview would qualify to go straight for studies in Canada if they chose to do so! Remember, this was in 1988 and they were just starting the programme. So anyone who volunteered for Canada would make it immediately. Still, as far as I remember none of us, about 50 plus or so who were called for the interview (or was it closer to 100 people?) wanted to go there. All of us wanted to go the UK.

Oh... now I remember. After getting my SPM results, I actually applied to go to the United States to do either Mathematics or Engineering but got called up for the BTU interview instead. So having failed in making the cut, I got into the A Level programme soon enough...

Now, as I said before, except for the BTU guys, we were all the cream of the crop. We were considered a step above the rest that should any of us fail in our exams at any stage during the A Levels programmes, we would automatically qualify to study at ITM (now known As UiTM)!

Oh, what about those who studied under the American degree programme (preparing to go to US) or the Australian programme? Well, it's not too much too say that in the popularity and intelligent stakes among those preparing to go overseas, we were considered the best! Then there's the TESL guys who were preparing to study locally under lecturers from overseas but that is another story...

Back to the division by classrooms. So we have the major division of arts stream versus science stream. The arts stream people were basically divided into those who studied for accountancy and those for law. The science stream into civil, electrical engineering and such. In between were those who opted for the odd subjects such as acturial science and I am among the odd ones. I think apart from me, there's probably only 2 or 3 who intended to take degrees in Mathematics!

The choice of subjects divided my roommates into a few classrooms. If I remember correctly, the ones in the same class with me, class J were Mangor, Tonga and Jim. Anyway, the college population immediately gells into groups. Some were people who have known each other since early school days, some clicked with each other during the orientation days and after...

I noticed among the best well-known guy groups were the ones with Auk (ex- Alam Shah boarding school boy) with his roomates and surrounding groups of ex-MCKK guys (known also as Koleg boys) and ex- SDAR (Sekolah Datuk Abdul Razak Seremban if I remember correctly!) guys. Then there's us the 51C guys. Yes, we were quite popular especially among the girls...

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! :]


Milky Tea said...

We WERE quite popular with the girls?? Hehehe. Very complimentary to the rest of us, bro, but not very true. Perhaps you and maybe one or two others. Oh no. I remember Batch 7 to be a wholly sellers' market when it comes to girls. This due to the sheer drop in number of students in Batch 7, compared to Batch 6 and Batch 8. If I recall correctly, many of the boys (myself included) came from all boys school, uneducated and untrained in the ways of the female wiles. We hunted. We went on expeditions and laid traps. But the game proved elusive...

Radzi Sapiee said...

Hehe... Isn't it better to say we than I? Hehe... Anyway I do believe the whole lot of 51C were quite popular with the girls, maybe in different ways but yes they do know us collectively.
For one, the whole college do remember our radio broadcast even though it lasted only a short while because of my mistake going into the girls' dorm (jeezzz. I do remember Ani once in a while) and then having the guards chasing me up to our dorm only to find an illegal broadcast session in action.
Then there's the drama night... Hmm... Maybe it was done according to classrooms rather than dorms but I do got the impression 51C is up there collectively as guys well-known.
As for my own private exploits with the girls, well I was just trying to find happiness... All over the places so much so that I forgot the basics. And look at me now, still languishing alone after all these years while all the girls I've been with are someone's mothers. Sheessshh! :]

Pootz in Boots said...

Jeez... I remember climbing on top of the roof of our blocks just to get clearer reception of you illegal radio broadcast! heheheheh...... err....

Lone Striver said...

...the thrill was in doing illegal things I suppose! WHen ITM(I think Cik Aizom) visited 51C during class and legalized the radio broadcast....dah takde mood buat "legal" things!

Amirul HM said...

Yo Fly!

I think U left out Farid@Cuniq's name.....mana boleh bro!!???

1st class honours at Leeds Univ.

Proud of U bro!