Thursday, October 25, 2007

Malaysia Tanahair ku

Well well...its been 3 days...if not for missing my girls and would be good 3 days!!

To start with, its not as hot as I thought it would be...the rain has made Malaysia cool enough a place. And there are air condition everywhere! In fact, in the classroom where my course is conducted it got so cold that I complained, drawing wondering comments why orang baru balik from Swiss tak tahan sejuk!

Can't write much coz am at Kak Sham's house at the moment and this amounts to ignoring the tuanrumah! So, I'll try to get to a computer at ILKAP tomorrow and write some mo, K.

Later then!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Balik Kampung

OK folks..not much much to do before my flight petang ni..
will try and post news from Malaysia!

p.s. did any of you see Tun M's picture dalam papers today? So the hensem in red!!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Banyak Hal...

Posting title courtesy of Abang Y....

yes...banyak hal lah of late ni! Lots happened..happening..should be happening..will happen...where do I start?

But first, let me just say how glad I am to learn that Tun M is well on the road to full recovery! Saw latest pictures of him in MarinaM's blog and he looks good! I ni peminat setia Tun M...I may not agree with him half the time but I have tremendous respect for him! Those around me has heard countless times of the story when I met Tun in Sogo Bakery (back when I was huge - pregnant with Kak Long..) and could only think of asking him for a handshake! He said yes, we shook hand, I said thank you and we went on our merry tak intelligent!

2. Reunion with Musri Tukiman.

Musri was my classmate - way back in 1983/4 - form 4 and 5 kat SMS Muar Tanjung Agas. And yesterday was the first time we met again after leaving school!! i.e. after almost 23 years!!! He emailed a couple of weeks back, saying he'll be in Geneva for a day, I emailed him back with my phone numbers and voila! there was a reunion..a very rushed and short one as he had to go back to Zug (somewhere dalam Switzerland ni lah jugak..donno exactly where though...) and due to meetings, I could not meet him earlier. There wasn't time to dwell on the past as we rushed from one tourist spot to another. It was just as well that I had my camera with me so..this is Musri and mumsie...don't you think he looks older than me? kan..kan?

3. ETA in KL

I've discovered, to my greatest irritation that flying out from Heathrow means am only arriving petang in KL...that means a whole day wasted!! That means no immediate trip to the hairdresser!! AArrrghhhhh....

4. Parent-teacher conference

We went to see Kak Ngah's teacher - Ms Denis Liew. As usual...we hear only praises for Kak Ngah. I missed the one with Kak Long's teacher but Abah said she received puji-pujian as well. Thats what i like about teachers kat sini...they only focus on the positive sides of your children and hopes to build on them. I think it works. I think children tends to work harder when they know they'll get appreciation at the end of it...well...come to think of it, adults pun perform better when they receives pats on the back from time to dak?

On the way to Kak Ngah's class, we bumped into Kak Long's Class 4 teacher - Sandra Heiger. I like her. I wish she was my teacher! Anyway, we chat for a while and told her of our impending leave. Sempat juga I express worry about the girls adapting into Malaysian school system and she said, "if anyone can do it, it will be your daughter (she was referring to Kak Long..). If she cannot will be the school's will not be hers!" i said..i wish she was my teacher!! we left her in the school corridor with Mumsie feeling quite comforted!

I forgot to whip out the camera in the classroom but we did take some pictures in the school lobby..they were getting ready for halloween....

5. More raya pictures...courtesy of yati and rashidi..tapi kecik arr...

6. More pictures of Geneva..taken when I was taking Musri around town...

BTW, the picture of the 3 legged chair is actually of a sculpture of by a swiss artist called Daniel Berset. He named it The Broken Chair. Apparently, it is a symbol of the fight against anti-personnel land mines and the lost leg symbolizes what so many land mine victims suffer. The Chair can be found right in front of the UN building.

and I leave this posting with a picture of a view which greets us whenever we leave the apartment in the mornings....when weather is good lah!

i think its the range of Mount Jura....siggghhhhh.....

Facts and figures on world's worst food crises

Dalam kita berhari raya and menjamu selera, lets spend a couple of minutes and think of those people mentioned below - found this in today's STAR....

Reuters - Tuesday marks World Food Day, with aid workers warning that war, weather, disease and deepening poverty leave more people hungry and in need of food aid each year just as rising prices make feeding them more expensive.
Below are some global statistics on food shortages and aid and a summary of some of the world's current food crises.
-- 854 million people worldwide do not have enough to eat, more than the combined populations of the United States, Canada and the European Union.
-- In the 1990s, global poverty dropped by 20 percent, as the number of hungry people increased by 18 million.
-- Every five seconds a child dies because of hunger.
-- One in four children in developing countries is underweight.

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO -- widespread shortages persist despite the end of Africa's most destructive civil war, with the U.N. unable to reach a third of the 300,000 people newly displaced by renewed fighting in the east.
ETHIOPIA -- as Ethiopia's government fights a counter-insurgency campaign in its ethnic Somali Ogaden region, rebels accuse the government of "man-made famine" and aid workers say delivery of food aid to 600,000 people is patchy at best. The Red Cross and aid group MSF have both been expelled from the region.
LESOTHO and SWAZILAND -- the two southern African kingdoms are suffering drought, soil erosion and some of the world's highest HIV rates and have suffered serious shortages every year this decade.
MALAWI and ZAMBIA -- having suffered years of repeated shortages from drought, the impact of HIV and deepening poverty, both countries have reported a surplus this year after better weather and improved access to inputs such as fertiliser.
SOMALIA -- ongoing conflict and the worst drought in years combined to restrict access to aid agencies and commercial supply of food, particularly after the closure of the main market in the capital Mogadishu. The U.N. says there have been 13 deaths at WFP food distributions this year and the number of incidents is rising. Maritime aid shipments run the risk of piracy.
SUDAN -- despite growing insecurity aid workers continue to feed some 4 million people in need of assistance in Darfur, as well as others affected by the now ended conflict in the south and recent flooding.
UGANDA -- widespread flooding in northern Uganda, home to people displaced by conflict, has led to WFP airdrops of food. Some 250,000 people in camps did not receive their September rations because of flooding.
WEST AFRICA -- after serious shortages in the Sahel in 2005, West Africa is seen as having had a good agricultural year but aid workers warn pockets of shortage remain in countries such as Niger, which remain vulnerable to massive crop failures.
ZIMBABWE -- drought, HIV, economic and agricultural collapse have hit harvests and the U.N. sees food aid needs rising from a current one million people to 4 million by the end of the year.

AFGHANISTAN -- despite ongoing conflict, Afghanistan has seen its best grain harvest in years.
NORTH KOREA -- still recovering from a devastating famine in the 1990s, North Korea this year suffered floods that damaged nearly a sixth of arable land. WFP is providing flood emergency food rations to 215,000 people.
SRI LANKA -- the resumption of civil war in 2006 restricted both commercial food deliveries and aid flows particularly to rebel Tamil Tiger areas in the north and east. The government-held northern Jaffna enclave has been effectively cut off for over a year, with rising prices and malnutrition rates.

IRAQ - food distribution in Iraq is difficult due to widespread violence, and AID agencies find it hard to reach the 2 million displaced within Iraq. Another 2 million people have fled mainly to neighbouring Syria and Jordan.
PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES -- some 2 million Palestinians receive food aid either from WFP or from the United Nations Refugee and Works Agency, which works with Palestinian refugees. Food aid has been allowed through Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip since the takeover by Islamist group Hamas. With Gaza unable to export, food stalls are unusually well-stocked but with the economy collapsing many are too poor to buy.

COLOMBIA -- with years of war giving Colombia one of the highest rates of displacement in the world, WFP feeds half a million people displaced by conflict.

SOURCES: United Nations World Food Programme, UNRWA, Reuters
Copyright © 2007 Reuters

so reckon anything we can do??

Monday, October 15, 2007

Hari Raya 2007

So much to, why don''t i let the pictures tell them, OK...

As you can see...we had a blast!! Loads of food and good company....and its still ain't over yet...

BTW, the last picture is of my carrot quite a few praises for it...kembang kuncup i youuuu...

One place deserves a special mention, though...the house of a young diplomat named Azril...sungguh cozy, canggih and nicely(very) decorated..he managed to shame the kakak2 and auntie2 who went's some photos..but these doesn't really do justice to the apartment...i should have taken some pictures of the bedrooms, his own lepak area and especially the dressing room!! Like we told him yesterday...bertuahlaaa bini ko nanti!!

The cooking and hidangan was by the tuanrumah..done alllll by himself!!

the abang-abang..memperagakan the living room....

the girls and uncle azril...simply having a good time...

p.s. sorrylah azril, anak2 i pecahkan meja you tu....

Thursday, October 11, 2007

P. Ramlee - Suara Takbir (Full Song) (Lagu Raya)

yang diperantauan tu...jangan nangis!!


Ok folks...obviously am no longer in any mood to be productive in the office!!!


Lagu Raya :- M. Nasir - Satu Hari Di Hari Raya

my favourite!!

Lagu Raya :- Menjelang Hari Raya - DJ Dave


Proton Iklan Raya

kinda silly this one but funny larr..

Iklan Raya TV3

cant' wait to raya kat mesia again...

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Many thoughts of Today

Actually, before finding out about Raya, I had this posting in mind...ramblings of the many thoughts thats going through my mind...

1. On Nurin's autopsy pictures -

Malaysians are getting to be very insensitive...i did receive to emails containing those pictures but i deleted them without even looking. I shouldn' one should!! Have some respect, folks...for arwah and for her family...this is not the story to be sensationalised! for heaven's sake!!

The question thats brewing in my mind though...where did the pictures come from? How irresponsible could the original "distributor" be? His (or her) acts should be condemned as unethical, immoral and deemed illegal, thus he (or she) should be identified, caught and punished..severely!!

2. Whilst Jazimin and his family try to make sense of the tragedy of it all, the rest of us are continuing life as we know it...plans for Raya are being made...plans for the big move...For me the procastinator ..I am merely thinking about all action yet!

3. What I have been doing is I've been taking pictures...of Geneva in its autumn glory..and of the girls...wanna see? First, here's a pix of Geneva's famous Jet d'eau. Wikipedia describes Jet d'eau as - "The 'Jet d'Eau, or water-jet, is a large fountain in Geneva, and is one of the city's most famous landmarks, being featured on the city's official tourism web site and on the official logo for Geneva's hosting of the 2008 UEFA".

Then, here's some autumn pictures around our apartment -

4. Finally, got the rajin-ness to try and make some pineapple tarts. My first try, ever! Got some ready made pineapple jam sent by Kak Yati all the way from Melaka, crust recipe courtesy of mamafami and we were all set. It didn't start so good. I had my doubts coz the dough was a bit too gooey but things got better as we (Abah and I) progress, or so I thought. The tarts look good enough...but the taste..definitely need improvement! hehe...takper..first time, kannn...i actually remembered to take some pixes!

OK..i end this posting with some pictures of the girls with their favourite kakaks in Geneva ...

and their buddies in crime...

Raya on Friday!!!

News flash - raya in Geneva will, in all probability, fall on Friday!!! Wow...
So..what to cook..what to cook?
Possibilites -

Nasi impit
Sambal udang - must find the big ones, baru kick!
kuah kacang
kuah lodeh
rendang kicap daging
pulut kuning
nasi minyak
ayam masak merah
kari dhall with daging
cakes...cakes...and more cakes!!!

ok...i think i'll cook everything listed in moderate amount...


Us..last Raya....

Its Almost Raya!!

3 days to go! Pheww!! Terrible, i know...a good muslim should mourn the end of Ramadhan...but this year has been trying for me, for some reason...i think its mainly because I was solely responsible in the kitchen so I had spent most of the time in it this month!! hehe...

Well...its almost Raya but I still haven't figured out what to cook for that special day! The procastinator that I am, I'd probably decide the night before!

last Saturday was spent at my boss' place...buat kueh raya with his daughters. We managed 2 jenis - biskut nestum and choc chip. Brought some home but its almost finished now! So...i'd have to bake some more!! aaarrrggghhhh....can we not have raya cookies for raya?? can't i bake cakes instead??

As for baju raya...the girls would have to do with last year's dresses coz mummy knew this would be our last raya here and somehow thought there was no point to get them new ones. Tak per...mummy year we'll do the works! Everybody will have new dresses to wear for the whole first 7 days of raya!!! haha...kalau Pak Lah give bonus laaaa....

OK folks...gotta go bake some cookies...or NOT!

Monday, October 8, 2007


Been announcing all around of our impending departure and generally got 2 kinds of reaction -

1. So soon? But you just got here/got yourself settled!
2. Your husband must be very happy!!

Let me tell you why people make those remarks -

For reaction no 1 - Overseas postings are usually for at least 3 years. We've been here slightly more than 2 years.Then, in the setting that I work in - WTO - people like me, from a developing country... muslim...pakai tudung...mummy of takes a while to be "accepted", so to speak. I think, with all those "baggages" I had to work harder to be taken seriously and to be included in professional and social events. In my mind..I have managed to do so...but only after almost a year! Thats why my working colleagues from other countries felt that they've just gotten to know me! Well...too bad for them, I suppose...sapa suruh judge a book by its cover, kan!

Still...its been good for me. ALL my life I've wanted to work international setting and this posting was most definitely a dream come true. Professionally, I've enjoyed every minute! The meetings..the negotiations...the working and non-working lunches (especially!!)...they were good experiences ...

So, I patut bersyukur coz I was given this chance..albeit for a short taste my dreams...and at least dapat rasa duduk overseas and get to see bits of the world with Abah and the girls...still...

For reaction no 2 - Abah has made known to ALL who'd listen that coming here was a mistake, as far as he is concerned. Well...minus all the trips that we've taken! He (and I) discovered that being an at home dad 24/7 is definitely not his cup of tea... or coffee...or milo! He's been miserable but stuck with us because of the commitments he made..and his promise to support this decision and my career whilst we are here. Still...

So...Abah's misery is about to end and to a large extent, I'm happy for him and I thank him for the sacrifices he made...Still....

Ahhh..there's also a 3rd reaction - one that i like the best -
"we'd have to arrange a farewell do for you"!! makan!!

Thursday, October 4, 2007


Definitions of Procrastination on the Web:

to put off intentionally and

the act of procrastinating; putting off or delaying or defering an action to a later time
dilatoriness: slowness as a consequence of not getting around to it

Procrastination is the deferment or avoidance of an action or task to a later time and is often linked to perfectionism.

well..well! i like the last definition..and would like to associate myself to it! haha!

I must be one of world's worst procrastinator...nothing gets done on time...even if it meets any deadlines (datelines??), it would be at the eleventh hour...but you see, I consider this trait a luxury..that I take time to do things so that I have the luxury to do those other things that I'm not supposed to do! E.g. blogging during office hours when I should be doing alllll those reports!

So today, from morning till just a couple of minutes ago, I finished and submitted 4 reports that could have easily been done way, wayyyyy before today! yay for mumsie...

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Transfer Order

To answer the question from Superwomanwannabe...we're heading home by end of November! Yeap! Its THAT soon!

Actually, I just got the transfer order yesterday - to report duty in KL on 1 December 2007. Later in the day, I emailed my boss in KL, asking whether its possible to ask for a short term extension (I really don't want to go just yet!) and was told in not so many words..."just follow the order and don't do anything foolish!". There you go...thats the end of the matter!

So, Abah is MEGA happy..he's starting to pack already!! And has been talking non-stop to the children (mummy wasn't interested to listen coz still upset about the timing!) about Malaysia...his family...what we can do back home...what we can afford back home...The girls are happy too, although Sarah is a bit uncertain. Soraya is just happy that she will get to see Wan again (and get to sleep with Wan again!).

But I don't think the girls realize how difficult its going to be for them...especially where school is concerned. Here, they have it reaaallll easy...Sarah, who is in Year 2, never had any homework except a book to read to mummy and Abah every night. We in turn has to sign a booklet proving that she has indeed read the book for us (and by the way, she reads beautifully, says the proud Mummy!).

Kak Ngah, who is in Year 4, has homework given out on Mondays to be passed up on Fridays. And we were specifically told that she should not spend more than half an hour each evening on them! Kak Ngah being Kak Ngah usually spends the whole of Monday night to finish alllll the work so she'll be free the rest of the week!

Kak Long, now in Year 5, has homework everyday, which she manages quite efficiently ( i.e. done before Mummy gets home from work, otherwise Mummy will just start barking!).

None of them have exams!! not in the middle of school year..not even at the end of the school year. Here, their school days are all about play, play, play and fun, fun, FUN!
Well...all that is about to change, ain't it? ALLAH swt have mercy on my babies!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

The Rajin-ness of Mumsie

Last night, when I was making all those entries and posting those silly pixes, I was also brewing chicken soup in the kitchen! Ahhh...there'll be these days of rajin-ness which we simply have to capitalize!

Last night after buka (menu then was ayam masak kurma, steamed vege cicah kuah pecal, and ikan-supposedly-3-rasa-but-turned-out-1-rasa jer-i.e. rasa sweet and sour sauce!), Mummy asked the girls whether they wanted bubur nasik (lambuk style) or macaroni cheese. Majority voted for the latter. But as Mummy was stirring the cheese sauce, Mummy had a craving for mee soup coz mummy had some home made bawang goreng prepared during the weekend (that makes sense to you? never mind!).

So, after the cheese sauce, i made chicken soup - bodo style - everything dumped together - chicken, bayam, taugeh and tomatoes! Then rebus some dried kueh tiaw coz that was the first thing I saw when I opened the cupboard to look for mee of some kind.


Sahur was simply divine and once again, one is ever so proud of oneself...The girls had macaroni cheese whilst Ma and Pa had bowls of kuew tiaw soup!

Kalau mood baik...(and if they are lucky) the gang may just see a repeat performance tonight!! Otherwise..its back to cereal and toast...

First Impression of Geneva

When I first came to Geneva back in early 2005, I came alone for a meeting. Without any friends, without knowing where to go for sightseeing...I spent most of my free time in my hotel room and took these pictures from the room...

Suffice to say I wasn't at all impressed! But today...almost 3 years on..after living here for more than 2 years..I am sooooo gonna miss the easy, quiet life of may be boring for some, but I love this slow paced traffic jams...low crime rate (I assume..)...good friends...and cold..cold winters!

Oh well! C'est la vie, as they say...I leave this post with some gonjeng pictures of the girls when they first got here...

They are soooo gonna kill me for this!! Kahkahkahhhh....

Old pictures

Am posting this from home, where I found some pictures of Sarah and Soraya...taken a couple of years back...

Cutest lil' things, aren't they? Siggghhh..why do they have to grow up so fast?

I also found this...Kak Ngah di zaman gonjeng!! (ampun kak ngah! She'll kill me for this but I'm her mummy, so I do have the right to embarass her...right? Right?!

To be fair..she has blossomed into this beautiful girl...


Monday, October 1, 2007

The Weekend That Was

We had a relatively good weekend, setting aside the fact that it was cold, still.

For me, it started on Friday evening. I attended the farewell reception for my US colleague - George. It was held well before buka time at the US Mission but I like George, so I went anyway to bid him and his wife, Julia, goodbye. The food looked good, dammit! Hinted for a doggy bag but they only laughed, thinking I was making a joke! As if!

Then the gang picked me up at 6.30 and off we went looking for the nearest McDonalds! Aishah's family joined us, making the girls even happier! Dahlah dapat buka puasa kat McD, dapat buka dengan best friends pulak. Bonus, as far as they are concerned. As for me, highlight of the meal was the caramel macchiato...Out of this world!! Almaklum..its been a while since we've had any good (relative!) coffee...With all the excitement I forgot to take any pictures to post them here. Oh well!

Saturday started really quiet. Abah went marketing with Abang Yunos and came back with enough food to feed a small nation! (Come to think of it..we might just as well qualify as a small nation, actually!) I stayed home and kemas, mumsie's style - done every couple of months! hehe ...

Buka was at Aishah's place...and OMG, there was a lot of food!! Macam-macam adaaa...mee kari, nasi with all the lauk you can think of (well, am exaggerating but there was masak assam ikan, daging goreng, hati goreng kicap, ikan masin, sambal sotong, ayam masak lemak, kerabu mangga - last 2 was courtesy of Ita, by the way - and maybe a few more yang i dah tak ingat). Kueh..where do I start? There was karipap sardin (Ita's), kueh koci (beautifully prepared by tuan rumah!), seri muka, apple pie. I brought popiah and my not very exciting pudding. So shy one..I had to bring back the pudding coz no one wanted to eat it, except Nana, God bless her soul! I always knew she is one sweet child!!

Sunday's buka puasa was at Puan Hiswani's place with people from the office. Again, there was a lot of food! Lontong (courtesy of yours truly!), nasi with kari ayam, ayam goreng, loads of sayur campur, kerabu mangga, sayur lemak labu...Aishah brought bubur lambuk, which disappeared within minutes! Kueh...there was yummy lengat pisang (cousins of lepat pisang), ondeh-ondeh, tepung pelita (God Bless Normah!!), bread and butter pudding, currypuffs, cekodok jagung, cucur udang and big yummy, juicy, expensive kurma courtesy of tuan rumah. Me..i modified my left over pudding and still...only Nana appreciates it! siggghhh....Of course, the modification managed to fool Abang Yunos into thinking its part of the lauk so he had some with his nasi!! Silly, isn't it?

So, that was my weekend that was....and it was alllll about food!