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, February 02, 2011

First time in Hatyai with the family

More than 7 months ago I went to the Thailand city of Hatyai for the first time ever in my life. Look at the old articles The station at Hatyai and The colours of Hatyai. Since then I've pledged to one day bring the wife and baby Al-Rasyid here. The northern trip during the month of Ramadhan was exactly planned for that, among others. So continued from The town of Sadao...

More than an hour after leaving Sadao we finally arrived at the city of Hatyai. Well, we made a number of stops along the way and traffic was slow when we approached the city. And some time (and money too) were wasted when I was caught in a road-block just before the overhead bridge to the city. For what? Because I forgot to buy the insurance necessary to enter Thailand at the border. Anyway at least we arrived here safely. Seen in the background is what I surmise must be the tallest building in Hatyai.

I've read somewhere that Hatyai is the fourth biggest city in Thailand. In fact it is the largest city after the capital Bangkok as the two larger cities in-between are actually suburbs of the capital.

Whatever I wanted to show the wife and baby the places I've been to 7 months ago. So we immediately headed for the city centre.

Without a map and clear direction I relied only on instinct and landmarks, mainly tall buildings. Thank God I took the right path and arrived straight to the centre.

So here we were passing through the streets and places I've been at...

In fact after weaving through some streets at the centre I headed for the train station.

The station was the point I started getting to known Hatyai 7 months ago and it is also a place I want to show the wife and baby. Besides I need to park the car someplace not so busy. From here we could walk and explore some more...

The town of Sadao

Continued from Around the national border at Bukit Kayu Hitam.

Some half-an-hour later we arrived at the town of Sadao.

This is where the junction to Padang Besar lies. This means those entering Thailand from the Malaysian state of Perlis would have to pass through this town to get to Hatyai.

As for me this is just another landmark as we went further up north.

However a signboard showing the existence of a mosque ahead made me want to check it out.

I followed this car to find the next right turn.

It turns out the mosque is not directly ahead nor directly to the right. I have to figure my way around before finding out it should be not far from a part which is clearly designated as a Muslim area.

There. Finally found the mosque. Will feature it afterwards in my bilingual blogspot SENI LAMA MELAYU (MALAY OLDEN ART).

Around the national border at Bukit Kayu Hitam

Time to get on with the stories on the trip up north made during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadhan, or rather end of August 2010. Continuing from Night visit to Masjid (mosque of) Zahir.

After that visit to Masjid Zahir we slept at a surau or small praying hall outside Alor Setar. Next day early morning we went further up north and reached the national border at Bukit Kayu Hitam.

The scene as we got closer to the border...

Have to pass this checkpoint...

Then only you could get out of Malaysia.

Entering the nation of Thailand.

Funnily I managed to get through without being checked by the authorities.

However that does not mean I should just go on. Parking the car inside Thailand I walked by to the checkpoint to get our papers in order...

There. We are officially in Thailand. Can't remember the name of this border town but while the immigration checkpoint is said to be in Sadao, this doesn't mean this town is called Sadao. The actual town of Sadao is still 13-14 km ahead. This is like entering the state of Melaka from Johor via the old trunk road where there is a border town. It is not called Melaka but rather Sungai Rambai, the city of Melaka itself is still some 27km ahead...

Monday, January 31, 2011

Going through the rain for a good look at the river in mid-town Kelang

And here's something to add to the "Fascination for rivers" section...

After climbing up the stairs at Jugra (look at The stairs up Bukit (hill of) Jugra), I went to the town of Kelang (also spelt Klang) to visit a few places before heading for one final mission there.

It was drizzling quite bad and my mission required me to walk quite a distance ahead.

Luckily they have this covered walkway...

With that I could at least walk all the way up this bridge...

What for? To get a good glimpse of the part of the Kelang river which rans through the town of Kelang.

Despite having passed here or either the other bridge seen in front many times I have yet to capture the relevant pictures...

Well here's a good look towards upriver.

This zoom downriver should be enough to show how the river Kelang looks at some 18 km through a few bends from the mouth. Compare to the scene in the middle of Kuala Lumpur city. Do look at the article Kelang river at Kuala Lumpur city centre.

The stairs up Bukit (hill of) Jugra

Continued from A brother-in-law's wedding function.

From the venue of the wedding function it is only a few miles to get to the legendary hill of Bukit Jugra. There's a set of staircase up the hill which I've always wanted to check out for sometime and after a visit to the tomb of Selangor's 4th Sultan, Sultan Abdul Samad at another part of the hill I decided to finally make the check.

It was still drizzling then and there were many dogs waiting. But these are no excuses to stop venturing...

A view down from halfway up. My wife and baby were waiting inside the black car.

The light at the end of the 'tunnel', or rather, the climb.

It is a water storage facility.

To the right is a road to get up here. My car was parked just before the part where the road was closed to the public.

A look downstairs.

Besides the facility is a path.

Well, I just have to check it out...

The open view at one corner.

Since I've already walked this far might as well finish the whole perimeter...

The view at its highest point...

From there it is back downwards.

Oh. At this point also lies a jungle path leading higher up the hill. Mental note... God willing I will come again to check out this path one day.

Today under this drizzle there's so far I can go. Have to start coming down.

Besides I can't leave the wife and baby alone any longer in the car down there.