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.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The flight to Aceh...

As promised in the article The visit to Aceh 15-22 June , let's start the story on the recent Aceh trip rolling...

Here is my wife (on the left) and our friend Kak Ann as we were ready to take the flight to Aceh from the LCCT terminal in Sepang...

And that's our plane, an Air Asia Airbus 320 if I remember correctly. For the record this would be my first time on Air Asia.

Flight was smooth and said to take only an hour and 25 minutes or so. After a while, I became very excited as I recognised the landscape which I have seen many times in maps. For the apex-like land jutting out into the sea as can be seen through the window of the plane signifies an area I remembered from a passage out of the Malay classical text "Hikayat Raja-raja Pasai". The area called Jambu Air (or is it Tanjung Jambu Air or something like that?) in old times caught my imagination as the passage related the story of Sultan Malikul Mansur who was sent to exile out of his native kingdom Samudera after making the mistake of taking a woman from the palace of his elder brother Sultan Malikul Mahmud who ruled the nearby kingdom of Pasai.

Now, I thought this is the river Perlak which is related to the ancient kingdom of Perlak also mentioned in the "Hikayat Raja-raja Pasai". But Kak Ann said we have passed Perlak just about 10-15 minutes earlier.

From the windows on the left, we could see Takengon, the huge freshwater lake on top of the mountains of Aceh. I understand it is situated at 1,250 metres above sea level!

As the plane moved on, I rushed back to the right windows to catch the part of land which I believe should house the centre of the old kingdom of Samudera.

There. I try to catch it again. For somewhere down there lies the tomb of the much-vaunted ruler Sultan Malikus Salih @ Raja Merah Silu (deceased in 1297 AD or so) who founded both kingdoms of Samudera and Pasai. For the record, Malikul Mansur and Malikul Mahmud are both his grandchildren. Later do I realised that I had missed the actual area containing the tomb. But you could still see it in this picture... for it lies somewhere in the lands in which the sea looks like an inverted triangle just above the jet engine...

The mountains and hills called Bukit Barisan as we near the city of Banda Aceh, capital of Aceh.

At last, Banda Aceh in sight...

Another view of Banda Aceh, this time with a patch of land below containing the famous tomb of the venerable saint Sheikh Abdul Rauf as-Singkili or Abdul Rauf Fansuri, better known here as Syiah Kuala who lived sometime in the 1600s.

Touchdown. And we have arrived at the new building of the Sultan Iskandar Muda airport which I learned was opened just 2 weeks before we arrived! To be continued...

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