Sunday, December 26, 2010

Pagi Semerah Daun Momiji


Pada 12 Jan 2011, saya menghantar manuskrip ini kepada salah satu syarikat penerbitan yang termasyhur di Malaysia. Namun selepas 3 bulan iaitu pada tarikh 31.3.2011, draf ini dipulangkan sebab saya dikatakan tersalah hantar manuskrip ini. Penerbit ini menyatakan mereka hanya mengambil manukrip "novel-novel cinta remaja". Manuskrip ini dikembalikan.

Buat waktu itu tajuknya berbunyi "Gurindam Langit Sakura.

Two ink tank each at Yen 1,800
One rim (500 pages) A4 paper at Yen 400
One file at Yen 250
Harga pos berdaftar Yen 3,500
Tangible capital Yen 8,050
Intangible capital Sweat and Blood

Word Count:101,730

Up, up and away...


Monday, December 20, 2010


Berita Harian, Dis. 17, 2010
Berita Harian Dis. 17, 2010

Susur galur yang mengalir dalam badan ini bukan Melayu asli. Boleh saja saya mengaku diri ini bukan Melayu. Emak dan bapa saya bertemu di Singapura dalam era penjajahan Inggeris. Seorang dari India dan seorang lagi dari Melaka, mencari rezeki dalam bandar yang serba membangun untuk meneruskan kehidupan.
Emak saya bukan orang sekolah tinggi dan bapa pula tidak fasih berbahasa Melayu. Pertuturan saya dari kecil hanya meniru cara emak saya yang pekat dengan loghat Negeri. Apa diharap kepada bapa saya pula dengan bahasa yang meniru imigran baru pada era itu.
Pada peringkat awal persekolahan, kami diajar bahasa Melayu sebagai bahasa kedua. Bahasa Inggeris menjadi bahasa utama. Kelas kurang sejam dalam 2 kali seminggu. Apa diharap kepada saya, anak separuh Melayu untuk meningkatkan bahasa Melayu.
Selepas menamatkan zaman persekolahan, kerjaya tidak menggalakkan pertuturan Bahasa Melayu.
Mendirikan rumah tangga dengan seorang jejaka Jepun dan selepasnya mengikutnya merantau selama 20 tahun, sejujurnya telah menghilangkan Bahasa Melayu yang daripada asal sudah mengalir lembap dalam diri ini.
Saya tidak sedar bahasa yang saya tuturkan hanya campuran dari berbagai-bagai bahasa. Ini amalan orang-orang di sekeliling saya dan saya hanya meniru sama seperti bapa, imigran dari India, yang meniru juga.
Seorang sahabat menyarankan saya menulis pengalaman hidup di pulau ini dalam blog. Saya mengambil saranan itu dan mula menulis. Pada awalnya catatan saya masih mengikut gaya penulisan pra-Merdeka bersama e-tanda dan segala ejaannya.
Ramai yang membantu untuk memperbaiki kelemahan ini sehingga senaskhah Kamus Dewan juga dihantarkan untuk saya.
Ramai juga yang menghina (mereka orang bijaksana dalam bahasa) kelemahan ini sehingga saya terpaksa berehat dari menulis dan berusaha sendiri untuk mempertingkatkan diri ini.
Berdikit-dikit saya membaca dalam diam tulisan orang-orang bijaksana dalam bahasa. Berdikit-dikit selama 5 tahun, bersendiri.
Dengan bantuan seorang sahabat yang mendorong penulisan novel ini dari awal ia berbenih, saya memanjat gunung itu sampai ke puncak jaya.
Saya bukan mengharapkan nama. Saya hanya ingin membuktikan kepada orang-orang yang pernah menghina saya.
Nah! Saya lulus!


Thursday, December 16, 2010

Cotton Plant

Cotton Plant
Everywhere cotton plants (Pokok Kekabu) are at their blossom peak in Okinawa now. My brother-in-law showed his surprise when he visited us last week, to see the variety in Okinawa has pink flowers. He said in Malaysia and Singapore the flowers are white.
I remember my grandma had a cotton tree standing in the front yard. One of my visits there, she told us she wanted to cut the cotton tree.
When I heard her decision, I thought that would be my last cotton tree. I doubt anyone in Malaysia would be interested in cotton trees anymore. During its hey-day, the cotton trees products pods of cotton, my grandma made beautiful soft pillows and mattresses for us. It was that cotton tree that inspired me while plotting novel Pulut Sakura Serunding Kasih.
For sure after that cotton tree was cut off, I never once see any cotton tree in Malaysia. I sort of missed that cotton tree as it brought back lots of good memories of my childhood.
My cousins used to gather the pods and picked cotton from it and filled up sacks of cotton.
But the story of cotton trees in my life did not stop there.
When I moved in on this island, I saw streets here lined with cotton trees. Then, when it's time for the pod to break, the winds spread the cotton like snow flecks in winter.

buah pokok kekabu
terpancut isi.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Coree Du Nord

Kedongdong Pickles in the making

My writings here must have some kind of attraction. But it's like looking at yourself in the mirror and you just see yourself. It needs someone to tell where the attraction is as everybody has got different angle of looking at beauty. Beauty is subjective and in the eyes of the beholder.
Yesterday the godless north shelled his brother in the south. War is all about land, about territory. Land means survival. The grab for some small piece of island for normal minds is uncomprehending. But international law rules the haul and catch that surrounds island. This eerie thought always creeps for people making islands their permanent home.

I am preparing this house for my sister's family visit next week. They are tagging all the three children along. Children grow very fast nowadays, both body and mind. Young parents don't spend as much time with their small children anymore. But once they've grown, those small minds are unreachable. Those small magic moments will not come, some parents will argue, or insist their children never changed. The love is still there. Of course the love is always there but children need to grow. They need the space and once they found their nooks, their innocent paradisaical minds moves out there. In the world.

I am preparing this house for my sister's arrival. To get more space, I need to throw some things away. That is the hardest part of cleaning.

Oh well, life is so full of indecision.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Eid ul Adha 1431

Whenever I can't find a place on the ground level, I moved up and sat myself down in between the 3 humps@google

This morning I woke up to the smell of Japanese curry. My dear husband do this when his cooking mood comes in. I sat down with a bowl of kare-rais (curry rice) and a cup of milk tea.

Then the movie channel start "In the Land of Women". I said to myself why not let the mood gets in this time. I just sat with the bowl of kare-rais and finished the movie 2 hours later. Not doing anything but writing this after.
I do get irritated thinking that 2 hours I could have lots of things going but again, I comfort myself. I do need some injection of fresh ideas to write.
Before beginning a new manuscript, I mess around with ideas. Get pieces here, pick pieces there, join up cultures, mix up people, create plots, that sort of blurry things. All these float over a period like cumulus clouds hovering in the back of my head.

I kind of like "In the Land of Women". Homely boy trying to let go the pain of being dumped. Changing life, meeting neighbors, getting involved in their lives and at the end of it all, getting out of that same complicated love life again just to avoid another head-on pain that rotates around a young adult life.

Today Makkah is celebrating Eid-ul adha. Such a mixed up on this part of the world. Tokyo Masjid is doing the eid's solat this morning and most other masjids and praying halls are doing it tomorrow.
So what are people on far-flung islands like us to do?
I choose to just remain quite. Let the world do what they like. I just do my own thing.
Maybe I just let all this low-pent up emotion drip like melting collagen from my body into the hot water that bubbles in the ofurou pool(public bath).

Just to remind myself. Mine was in Dec/Jan 2006, that it has been 6 rounds of eid- ul adha, I was among the 2.5 million people at Mt. Arafat and Mina (latest count today 3 million).

Some of us may have a quiet celebration but wherever we are, I should think our hearts will always remain there on this day (for those who have the privileged of being there) and for those others with the intention to go, might feel the click in the hearts even for one second of that wonderful place on earth.

Labbaik Allahumma labbaik
Labbai kala sharee kala kalabbaik
Innal hamda wan ne'mata
Lakawal Mulk
La sharee kalak

"Here I am at Thy service O Lord, here I am. Here I am at Thy service and Thou hast no partners. Thine alone is All Praise and All Bounty, and Thine alone is The Sovereignty. Thou hast no partners."

Wukuf berbusa
riak iman merebak
banjir Al-Ha-ram


Saturday, November 13, 2010


The cold weather has set in. Not full blast yet but surely reaching there. We've brought out the room-stove and the kotatsu (low table with a warmer under to make the body warm).
Oden goes very well in such cold weather. This morning I had oden for breakfast.
Clockwise its boiled egg, taufu, boiled radish, fish cake with gobou(see pic below) root, fish sausage, kombu (lalang laut) or long algae (see pic below) and the center is konnyaku cake from the konnyaku root (ubi konnyaku).





Friday, November 12, 2010

Pickled Kedongdong


A couple of days ago, I went to a friend's (Uehara at Ozato) orchard and picked all these kedongdong. These are just from one tree and she has 3 others. I managed only one tree. That is enough.
Uehara said they grow these kedongdong for fun. Watching the fruits are such joy for them! Actual fact is she has no idea how to eat it! Like all Japanese.
I'll pickle those big fruits and the rest I'll make some traditional dishes out of it like sambal belacan kedongdong, yummy and maybe fish curry kedongdong (same like my mom used to add green mangoes) or masak lemak pedas with ikan saba kedongdong.
Cooking is invention and I always invent new dishes combining the best of Japanese and Malay dishes.

Kedongdong haiku:

Sambal kedongdong
the smell of the belacan
is lost when alone.


Sunday, November 07, 2010

My Sheaffer

My Sheaffer

I don't know whether school children do it these days but during my younger school days, we were made to write the proper way. Not only do we have to follow every curves and bends of the alphabets but we were made to write with a fountain pen. Everyone of us keep at least one fountain pen in the pencil box. Do children these days keep fountain pens?
We love to write with fountain pens. Those days (read: year 1963-1967), we still don't see ball-point pens. We only have fountain pens and pencils. With fountain pens, the ink came along. Black and wet ink. When children have black and wet ink, obvious things happened. My skirt was always blotched with black ink, my hands always stained black. This happened to my friends as well. We used to fight with ink. We point the pen nib forcefully towards the intended culprit. Ho,ho you get a polka-dot face that will last till the end of the school hours.
The pen above was a gift I received 2 years ago from a loving friend. For 2 years, I went all over the island finding for the ink. Yes, I can't get black ink for a simple reason, because there is no shop selling fountain pen on this island (I don't know about other places in Japan).
In the end, after more than 2 years, I settled for calligraphy ink, those that are used in Japan kanji calligraphy. From the tube, I poured the ink into a blueberry-jam bottle.
I love writing with fountain pen. Writing with normal pencil would hurt my fingers. Pencils are too slim for my fingers to hold. Writing with ball-point paint is mere boredom, somehow I can't get my inspiration ticking. Of course, I write long manuscript in my Windows Words but there are times when my romantic self urge me to write with a fountain pen.
You should hear the sound of the nib scratching the papers, you should feel the ink trickling down the papers and best of all smell the ink on your fingers.
Normally, after writing with a fountain pen and after satisfying my romantic needs, I have stained writing hand and need to go to the washroom.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Belalang Mentadak-18thn

Pagi tadi hidung ambo dikejutkan dengan bau pelik. Bukanlah pagi sangat. Dah masuk jam 9.30 pagi. Masih terlentang dan terkebil-kebil, baru ambo teringat Otto kata semalam dia nak varnis lantai ruang tamu dan dapur. Rumah ini sudah 13 tahun. Varnis lantai papan semakin bercalar dan bertompok-tompok. Sebenarnya hari Ahad nanti ada tetamu penting datang ke rumah kami buat pertama kali. Tapi biarlah ambo cerita tentang varnis sementara menunggu kejadian selanjutnya...

Semenjak ambo menulis draf, rumah ini terabai. Lain-lain tulisan tidaklah begitu menghariahkan tapi menulis draf terasa seperti menghantukan. Pokoknya rumah ambo terabai.

Sebenarnya hati ini terasa tertekan memikirkan sampah yang bertahun-tahun ambo simpan. Pakaian anak-anak masa mereka bayi masih ada dalam almari. Otto suruh buang, ambo kata benda itu tak ganggu kita, jadi kita jangan ganggu dia.

Buku-buku lama, buku klasik, buku agama semua saya simpan. Untuk Otto buku tidak perlu kita simpan, bila dah baca berikan orang lain atau buang. Ambo kata mana boleh buang ilmu. Ilmu kita bawa sampai mati.

Pakaian lama-lama semasa badan ambo seperti belalang mentadak masih ada lagi. Berbungkus bulat-bulat. Itu pun simpan. Otto kata buat kain buruk.
Mana boleh buat kain buruk, kainnya tak buruk pun!

Entahlah, tolonglah.
Macam mana nak buang!!!???


Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Alaun melahirkan anak dinaikkan lagi. Setiap kali melahirkan, diberi sebanyak yen 420,000. Masa saya dulu, 26 tahun lepas, kami dapat alaun bersalin Yen 230,000.
Duit ini dari mana? Dari cukai pendapatan. Siapa yang mengeluarkan cukai pendapatan ini? Pekerja swasta dan awam. Cukai dinaikkan untuk membayar lebih. Kasihan orang-orang muda di Jepun.

Kadar orang Jepun bunuh diri naik lagi tahun ini (+-33,000 nyawa). Yang peliknya, pada pertama kali didapati orang-orang muda antara umur 20'an dan 30'an yang ramai bunuh diri (+-8,000 nyawa). Kasihan orang-orang muda di Jepun.


Thursday, October 14, 2010


"Mano poi eh kui padi dopan ghumah?"

Setakat ini, belum ada orang berani menjawab soalan ini apabila saya masukkan di dalam Facebook.

Mungkin ini kerana:

1] Ada pembaca beranggapan ayat ini bukan dalam Bahasa Melayu.

2] Ada pembaca tidak faham Bahasa Noghori.

3] Ada pembaca faham Bahasa Noghori tapi tak tahu apa itu "kui".

4] Ada pembaca memang faham Bahasa Noghori dan tahu pula makna "kui" tapi memang tak tahu jawapan pada soalan ini.

Satu lagi tentang usul-usul perkataan.

"Beca" berasal dari Bahasa Inggeris yang dicampur-adukkan dari perkataan "rickshaw".
Tapi "rickshaw" bukan juga berasal dari bahasa Inggeris.

"Rickshaw" keluar dari lidah cair yang mengalir dari perkataan asal "ricksya".

"Ricksya" pula dipendekkan dari perkataan "jinrikisya!"
"Jinrikisya" atau 人力車 (bahasa Jepun) yang bermaksud 人 orang, 力 tenaga, 車 kereta. Cantumkan menjadi orang-tenaga-kereta.

Huraiannya menjadi kereta yang mengguna tenaga orang...beca!

"Mano poi eh kui padi dopan ghumah?"


Sunday, October 10, 2010


Mengabadikan hari ini.

1] Terjaga awal sebelum waktu fajar. Tangan menekan butang loceng dan menunggu, tapi terlelap. Alih-alih bila tersedar waktu sudah masuk setengah jam selepas suruq...mood menjadi liar.

2] Ada sesuatu yang dinantikan tapi belum ada jawapan...mood membara.

3] Ada masalah yang harus diselesaikan tapi menunggu masa dengan sabar...mood bosan.

4] Hati ingin berseronok dengan teman2 tapi kaki tidak mahu melangkah lebih dari pintu depan...mood sedih.

5] Semangat ingin menghabiskan projek terkini tapi jari menulis sudah bengkak, tak dapat pegang pensel...mood menyerit.

Lima cukuplah, tak perlu penuhkan senarai sampai 10.

Mengabadikan hari 10-10-10!


Thursday, October 07, 2010

Langit Luruh

Ada pepatah Jepun yang bermaksud "hati perempuan bagaikan langit luruh".
Luruh adalah musim perantaraan.
Baru habis musim panas yang berluwapan dan memijak ke pintu musim sejuk.
Musim luruh awannya berkumpulan seperti ikan berlari-lari dalam laut, berderet-deret dan panjang di lata langit.
Ini lain dengan awan musim panas, di mana awannya berkepul-kepul naik meninggi, bertingkat-tingkat.
Bayu musim luruh sungguh nyaman.
Senang dilenakan dan boleh mengkhayalkan.
Hati perempuan sama seperti awan, bayu dan langit musim luruh.
Tidak menentu.
Sekejap ke belakang, sekejap ke depan.
Adakala tenang, adakala ribut, berkilat, berpanah.
Selalunya awannya menari-nari tapi tidak lama.
Bila hujan, dibuatnya lama berhari-hari.
Memang musim luruh sama seperti hati perempuan.
Sesiapa yang belum kenal musim luruh tak perlu risau.
Duduk saja serumah dengan seorang perempuan, sudah cukup mengalami luruh semusim!

Bertadabburlah dan hayatilah ciptaan-Nya di alam ini.

Kumpulan sadin
berkejaran di langit
egonya tinggi.


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

...yang baki gincu.

image from google-tsubaki

Bersebelahan pohon tsubaki ini terdapat juga sebatang pohon willow yang baru mengeluarkan tunas hijau di ranting-rantingnya. Ranting-ranting pohon willow ini melambai-lambaikan jari-jemari mengikut siulan semilir musim bunga yang nyaman pagi itu. Bakat puitis yang terpendam di dalam sanubari Rafique menangkap kecantikan yang terbentang di lensanya dan mengilhamkan sebait puisi Jepun.

Pergi tsubaki
tinggalkan jasad ini
yang baki gincu.

Petikan daripada novel Pulut Sakura Serunding Kasih (PSSK).


Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Etiquette atau etiket (kalau salah sebut terjadi air ticket!).
Mengikut kamus Dewan Bahasa etiket bermaksud adat dan peraturan berkenaan kesopanan (terutamanya dalam kehidupan sosial atau dalam profesion tertentu).

Di Jepun, etiket dalam segala hal kehidupan ada dicatatkan dalam buku. Etiket mengunjung/menziarah, etiket tuan rumah menyambut tetamu, etiket perkabungan, etiket majlis minum teh dan banyak lagi.

Adakah etiket-etiket kehidupan orang Melayu sudah dibukukan untuk menjadi contoh/tauladan bagi generasi akan datang? Atau masih dan hanya disebarkan dari mulut ke mulut? (Mungkin saya belum terjumpa buku etiket ini, kalau ada tolong sampaikan.)

Orang muda disayangi, orang tua dihormati.

Saya tidak faham perangai orang-orang muda sekarang. Masa saya muda dan masih lakukan sekarang, saya teruskan hubungan dengan orang-orang yang saya kenal, baik dari dalam negara mahupun di luar negara. Bukannya saya baik sangat tapi itulah saya...

Masa saya muda belum ada kemudahan komputer. Saya sanggup menulis beberapa keping poskad atau surat menanyakan khabar, pergi ke pejabat pos, beratur beli setem dan tunggu balasan mereka. Panjang betul proses tapi kerana hormat kepada mereka dan mengenangkan jasa mereka yang sudi menghulur bantuan kepada saya dan keluarga saya masa bersama mereka, itulah saya sanggup lakukan segalanya. Apatah lagi dengan kemudahan alat penghubung seperti komputer sekarang, lagilah senang untuk menghantar sepatah ayat komunikasi,barang sepatah pun jadilah...

Orang-orang muda sekarang berbeza dari zaman saya. Tak perlulah beri alasan kerjaya dan berbagai. Segala kebaikan datang dari hati suci/murni. Tak perlu beralasan.

Pada saya dengan hanya sepatah ayat..."kak leyla buat apa?" hati ini akan terbuka dan menyayangi mereka.

Orang muda disayangi, orang tua dihormati...


Monday, September 20, 2010


Jiranku, si emaknya dah lebih setahun tinggal di rumah orang tua. Rumah itu kosong. Sesekali adik beradik mereka berkumpul, makan2 untuk meraikan hari sembah roh atau tahun baru atau entah apa2 lagi.

Yang tinggal tetap di rumah itu, hanya seorang bujang tua. Dia bukan tinggal dalam rumah itu tapi dia bina sebuah pondok simen di tanah lapang depan rumah dia. Tanah lapang itu depan rumah ambo juga.

Si bujang itu dah tua. Lebih tua dari ambo tapi masih bujang. Kerja entah apa. Pondok simen itu bertentang rumah ambo. Saban hari waktu petang, dia duduk depan pondoknya, mengarah pandang ke rumah ambo. Nasib baik, binaan rumah ambo tidak bertentangan.

Sekarang dia membina kepungan di keliling rumahnya. Jiran-jiran di belakang rumah dan saya tidak dapat melihat lagi ke dalam kawasan rumahnya.

Si bujang ini agak pelik. Entahlah saya rasa orang lelaki yang membujang sampai ke tua memang pelik. Orang lelaki mesti kahwin. Kalau tidak mana nak ganti darah. Kaum perempuan lain.

Saya tak kisah dia kepung tanah dan rumah dia tapi saya terfikir kes di Jepun satu hari dulu tentang seorang bujang tua menculik anak gadis. Gadis itu dikurungnya dalam bilik di rumahnya yang berkepung dan mendera gadis itu berbulan-bulan.

Lagi satu saya teringat pula tentang kes Banting sekarang...kan ke tembuk setinggi 1.5 m juga mengepung kawasan itu?

Orang yang mengepung rumah mereka, saya rasa mesti ada sesuatu yang mereka ingin sembunyikan. Ini theori saya yang fobia dengan kelakuan manusia-manusia pelik!

Seekor arnab
dalam tuala putih


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Monday, September 13, 2010

Eid cooking

Pada hari raya saban tahun, saya masak rendang, ayam masak merah, nasi impit bersama kuah sate tapi tahun ini mood Hari Raya masuk diakhir-akhir Ramadan. Makanya saya tidaklah terasa suasana hari raya sangat. Lagi pun sedang mempercantikkan manuskrip yang perlu dilepaskan, sesungguhnya saya tidak terasa hari raya langsung!
Jadi saya buat masakan yang saya kepingin. Kalau bersendirian, saya memang tak masak yang saya ingin makan sebab tak berselera makan sendiri. Jadi hari raya ini saya balas dendam segala yang saya ingin makan bersama tetamu yang datang beraya.

Saya masak nasi bukhari daging bersama ayam tandoori.
Bakar roti pizza untuk dicecah bersama daging masak merah.
Buat kerabu sayur bersama kacang panjang dan daun kesum.
Daun salad saya siat-siat untuk dicampur asam umeboshi dijadikan salad.
Akhir sekali saya tumbuk lada panjang dalam 20 ulas, campurkan belacan bakar dan perahkan asam limau.

Punyalah kick makan beramai. Percaya tak ada seorang pelajar bertambah sampai 5 kali!
Saya cuba gunakan sayur-sayur dan daun-daun yang ada di rumah. Semua bahan asli tanaman sendiri.

Inilah cara yang saya akan buat pada hari-hari perayaan. Saya happy dengan makanan sendiri dan orang lain juga merasakan nikmat masakan saya.


Di Aidil Fitri
Pintu rumah tertutup
menunggu tamu.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

Happy Eidil Fitri, Merry Shawal 1341

Eidil Fitri 1341

Every year different groups of people come over to my house to celebrate Eidil Fitri with my family. This year, Eidil Fitri falls on a working day, Friday. Most students have classes or people go to work after the Sunnah morning solat.

Here with my doa we will meet next Ramadan and have many more good Shawal, insyaAllah.


Thursday, September 09, 2010

Eid 1931

I just finished taking the last morning meal of Ramadan. Tomorrow is Eid. The truth is this, I am not busy at all with Eid. I've done the normal cleaning and the menu is set and I will take my time to cook for my guests. I called my younger sister yesterday, she is at the shopping mall trying like crazy to get the groceries last minute.
I've worked on this manuscript since July last year. It was finished 3 months ago but I did a thorough check again. I stopped at 92,000 words but along the way at re-check point and last count now, its gone over 100,000 words.
To take the barakah of Ramadan month, I give notice of the hand-over this week. But, more last minute editing takes another couple of days before I finally feel prepared to let it go.

I am so unprepared to celebrate Eid. Most probably on Eid, I will be scanning my manuscript while waiting for some guests to drop in.

I will let you know about this manuscript once it is clear. In the meantime, I have to prepare emotionally for Eid.

To all my blog followers, behind the scene readers from Google reader, Yahoo reader and other feed readers and to all who log in visibly, not forgetting some haiku enthusiast, thank you very much for reading this piece of writing. Along the way, if it has offended you somehow, please accept my forgiveness.

*Many Happy Eidil Fitri with this wish in Arab "Taqabbalullah minna waminka".

*bermaksud: Semoga Allah menerima amalanku dan amalanmu.


Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Life Path

courtesy of Google-Mt.Fuji

Today is the last day of the year for climbers to struggle up Mt. Fuji. The mountain is closed from tomorrow until July next year, when it will be opened again for climbers. Once a year from July till August, everybody can try to climb this mountain. July/August this year, a record 280,000 people tried to climb to the summit. But whether these 280,000 succeed to the summit is not in the record.
I've done my share of climbing of Mt. Fuji and successfully reached the summit. But if you ask me, do I want to climb right heart says YES but my left heart says NO (anyway, you figure out the left and right).
I can see the path to the top at the beginning of the climb. Its there! All laid out!

I, also have my path laid out at the beginning of my life journey. I wanted to become the most powerful, influential women of a huge, international organization. I want people to jump at the click of my fingers, I want drivers to open and close doors for me, I want different meals serve everyday.
I was willing to work hard and climb this path to reach the top. That was my plan, that was my goal.

But did not turn up that way!

Now, I am sitting in my house, thinking my of two girls having successful careers climbing up the mountain path.
Now, I am sitting at home, washing dishes everyday.
Now, I am sitting in front of this laptop, knocking the keyboard.
Now, I write everyday.
Somehow, somewhere I must have took a different turning...!!!

But my right heart say YOU'VE DONE IT, GIRL and my left heart says I'M OK!


Saturday, August 21, 2010

Summer High Sch Baseball

All-Japan High Sch Baseball: Konan High Okinawa won the spring tournament this year but not only that, two days ago they won the summer tournament as well. This only happened to 5 schools in Japan so far in history. So winning the Spring and Summer Tournament put a permanent mark for Konan High in the history of high school baseball tournament of Japan.
Airline companies have to put up extra flights to load parents and supporters to Koshien Stadium from Okinawa. In the summer heat that burnt the air at 35c, those children played and those supporters from Okinawa cheered.
At the end of the game, the lost team cried for disappointing their fans but Konan team cried as well.
Tears of happiness.
This is the only way for the Okinawa people to tell the mainland Japanese folks that with their combined strength and spirit, no obstacles will get in their way.
If you looked into the history of Okinawa Islands and its people, bulling, neglecting, undermining, abandoning and mistreating were and still are common practice within the political parties on mainland Japan with Okinawa people.

Thank you Konan Baseball team for making the people on the island proud again.

興南高校 お手柄でしたね!

Yes, we can do it!
Look, we've done it!


Friday, August 20, 2010

Word Processor

I had a word processor just like this before. Can't remember where I stashed it. Before this, my father lend me an Olivetti. Those typewriters that used two-coloured ribbon. Black on top and red at the bottom. I used to write resume after I left school with Olivetti and you should hear the sound in the middle of the night.
My father used to nag about the noise but I have to send the letter out the next day!
Anyway, when I have babies, I did not read nor write. Those 15 blissful years, or is it blissful?
Anyway, I started to write again but Olivetti was not with me. So I got myself a Brother Word Processor.
I used it for about 3 years and then came the Microsoft words. Out goes the Brother WP.
Why am I talking about past years junks?

Because right now I need that junk. I need that Brother WP.
Tell me how to type a virtual document on the computer. That document is like boxes that you have to fill up.
So, I still need that Brother WP.

Why don't your just write?

Nay, my hand gets nervous when writing important documens from the government. I cannot avoid some misspelled words and such.

Oh, give me my Brother WP!


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Happy Ramadan 1431

Many happy Ramadan days and beautiful Qiamullail holy nights to all my fans, friends and children and relatives all over the world.

Ah, comes Ramadan
Drip of Ar-Rahmah nourish
all the fasting souls.


Monday, August 09, 2010

Pucuk Ubi

Tapioca Plant

This is the tapioca plant I found in Uehara farm. I made a dish from it. I fried the fish first with tumeric (fresh from the sea-any fish wil do).
Two thinly-sliced lemon grass with slices of tumeric leaves. In a pot of coconut milk, pound some slices of red chillies and throw all the slices herb together with a handful of boiled tapioca shoot (slice as well).
Boil all of these, some salt for taste.
That's it.
This dish is called gulai lemak pucuk ubi (but I add the fish and the lemon grass with tumeric leave),

Tapioca shoot dish

Hijrah ke pulau
Memetik pucuk ubi


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Gegege Mangga

GeGeGe Kitaro

Mizuki Shigeru came home with only one arm after the war. Japan economy was at its lowest after the war with high unemployment. With only one arm and what with the bad economy, Shigeru used his only talent to live. Drawing cartoon.

A few years when the war ended, he sold his cartoon to a small printing company. But his comic books did not sell well. His family lived a very poor life. The electric to his house was cut off due to unpaid bills. They eat very ripe bananas (almost black), to survive the hard life.
NHK is showing this drama now, GEGEGE Nyobou or Gegege's wife. The drama recalls the cartoonist life as recollected by his wife.
The reward of pure love of a wife to a poor cartoonist with one arm.

Shigeru break came when his talent was found by a friend who owned a printing company. Then, after several issues of his mangga, a well-known comic book company found his work. At first, Shigeru was asked to produce sci-fi cartoons but he rejected this offer because he feels his talent was not in sci-fi.
Then, Shigeru was approached again and this time he was given his choice of any comic. He agreed but the printing company gave him one condition. That he must also produce his mangga (comic story) for the TV company.
That was the beginning of GEGEGE KITARO on television.

Shigeru already have a theme to his mangga. All the characters in the mangga are ghosts. His comic ghosts are the One-Eye Cup baby, the flying carpet ghost but the heroes among the ghosts is the One-Eye boy named Kitaro.

There was no turning back after his first mangga came on the first comic book followed by series program on television.

To make story short, Shigeru is now a very rich man. Selling his mangga on television, mangga magazine and they even make video games out of it!


The laughter of past
comes but once in a lifetime
wilting rose petals


Sunday, July 11, 2010

Summer Vegetable

Summer Vege

These are summer veggies on this island. You can see banana but that is a special banana, sweet. I know some people named it as Monkey banana. Then there is square beans (kacang botor), red chillies, long beans (kacang panjang), ciku (those brown egg-like fruits, pink-bell jambu and of course not in the photo is bitter gourd (peria) and petula (sponge gourd).

Petula or sponge gourd, strange thing is the Japanese on the mainland don't eat it, instead they use it as body scrub! But Okinawa people use it as food!

Anyway, this is the best time to get good red chillies, so I bought 6 packs in one go.

Words from her red mouth
sparkle and burn back her face
Red chillies and friends.


Wednesday, July 07, 2010



Today Japan celebrate Tanabata, 7th July or 7-7. Its a cultural tradition.
On this summer night, in this atmosphere, two brightest stars will cross the bridge on The Milky Way (Bimasakti). They cross only once a year.
The Japanese believe one star is a male named Hikoboshi (Altair) and the other is a female star called Orihime (Vega). These two stars are lovers. They meet for one night a year (on 7th July) and make love till the sun comes out in the morning.
Romantic dont you think!
But unfortunately, if it rains, the sky is not clear and they might not find each other in the whole galaxy of stars.
And in Okinawa today, it is raining. Poor Hikoboshi and Orihime. Maybe this year they don't see each other.

So, even the stars have hard time perpetuating their love, what do you think of lowly people like us!

Traditionally, people in Japan will gather outdoors for picnic but tomorrow is a school day, I doubt they do it tonight.

Every shopping complexes will put up bamboo trees and children write their wishes and tie it on the branches. (Orang Islam tak boleh buat ini, sama dengan buat doa bila tiup lilin atas kek hari lahir. Kita hanya minta doa kepada Allah dan hanya Allah akan makbulkan doa kita...mana pula buluh, tiup lilin boleh makbulkan doa kita...kuat sangat ke power benda Allah itu...chish).

There is one haiku by Basho about this Tanabata thing. People who study this haiku, will feel the rain in the middle of the sky when the two star lovers make love. This haiku has sexual connotation.

The word Basho used is Uchuten or rain in the heaven.

Tanabata no
awanu kokoro ya

Now my version of Tanabata

Tanabata sky
my husband sleeps on the couch
with the teevee on.


Tuesday, July 06, 2010

So gaga this lady!


It was announced that she has 10 million friends in Facebook, not 1 million. Staggering 10 million!
Common people like me cannot figure this at all. How to have 10 million friends?
Not that I'm aiming for it, far. I am just one common person.
But one thing we have in common is that on a humid summer night like right now, we are both sweating!

Deep on summer night
even the fast turning fan
is dripping in sweat.


Friday, July 02, 2010

Baring all

Paraguay model

She is a model from Paraguay. She said she will bare all if Paraguay gets into the semi-final. Such patriotism or is it?

That virgin melon,
break into such happiness
when her skin is pricked!


Friday, June 25, 2010

Swing high

Image: NHK: Word of season; Swing

These are haiku. Every week, NHK holds 2 or 3 haiku sessions. Of course, the language used is Japanese.
Take a little look at the haiku here. They are all in one line which has 17 syllables. So, one misconception of haiku is it should be in 3 lines with 5-7-5 design. Not necessary.

The word of season of above haiku is swing. How come? You may wonder. Why swing becomes a season word. Swing is an outdoor activity. Most outdoor activity is done in spring or summer. In this case swing is a spring season word, maybe because in Japan the weather in summer is too hot/humid to play in the park.

I don't have time to translate those haiku up there. I have to finish some writing right now, so I'm desperate for time.

Here is my own version of swing.

Clouds all around her
watering heaven's garden
my mom swinging high.


Monday, June 21, 2010

Night frog lullaby

Live in Japan 1974-Sing (Japanese Version)

I was doing some editing right into the night. Outside, in the breezy summer night, I can heard the night frog calling. There is some kind of rhythm to the call. Then, I remember another call. A call to sing.

Night frog lullaby
Kanashi koto* in blue
the moon chorus too.

*kanashi koto: something sad.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Oleander sky

*Pink Oleander

This is Oleander. This flowery shrubs run all around the military bases in Okinawa together with the barb wires. After every barb wires that protect the people and property on the bases, they put up this shrub.

So, you think the American military intends to make Okinawa scene pretty?
Think again. Not that innocent!

The leaves of this angelic flower is poisonous. The white liquid that flows from the leaf contains an allergic substance that irritate the skin.

So, now it is clear why this innocent shrubs with beautiful flowers goes around the military bases.

Stand guard, tall and strong
catching breeze running the sky
Oleander blockade.

*image from google


Monday, June 07, 2010

Sabun Yen3,500


Masa menulis ini, mengikut pertukaran mata yen/ringgit, harga sabun ini RM129.00

Semalam masa di dewan mandi, seorang mak cik menghulurkan sabun ini. Saya selalu picit bahu mak cik. Sesi picit memicit bermula bila saya rasa kesian mendengar dia kata bahu sakit-sakit buat kerja (mak cik kerja di kedai daging). Jadi saya picitlah, saja nak tolong legakan masalah. Tapi, seterusnya setiap minggu dia demand. Bila nampak saya saja, dia minta picitkan bahu. Kadang-kadang menunggu saya datang lagi. Lama-kelamaan, bukan dia saja. Ceritera dah berpusing. Sekarang ada dua tiga orang mak cik menunggu saya datang.
Jadi agaknya terasa demand sangat, semalam salah seorang beri saya sabun ini.

ambil saja, terima kasihlah...tapi dalam hati berkata, "janganlah pula sabun ini mengandungi tepu minyak dari mergastua yang menyondol muncung itu".
-jaga di sini ramai yang guna sabun menyondol muncung. Saya guna Lux, punyalah murah (3 hanya 100 yen saja-Made in Maresia) tapi yang penting halal.
Dah terima sabun itu, seorang lagi kawan mak cik kata, kau guna sabun itu untuk muka saja.
pula? Kalau guna badan tak boleh?
Eh!!! Jangan guna untuk badan, Mahal!!!!
Ye, Mahal...sekeping Yen 3,500!!!

Terfikir sendiri.
...tak suka.
Kenapa beri saya yang mahal begitu.
Saya tak suka termakan budi.
Biarlah saya picit sukarela...tak beri hadiah pun tak apa. Tak mahu termakan budi.
Saya buat kerja harapkan pahala (kalau dapatlah) di akhirah nanti.
Engkau mana tahu itu semua. Yang engkau beri itu semua engkau tuntut di dunia.
Engkau ingin saya picitkan selalu lepas engkau berikan sabun mahal itu, betul tak?
Jadi selepas ini kalau saya tak mahu picit lagi, macam mana?
Sabun itu.....???

Ini saya kata dalam hati saja.

Apalah...Jepun! Jepun!


Thursday, June 03, 2010

Bunga-bunga Basho

credit google: hanabatake

草いろいろ  おのおの花の 手柄かな
Matsuo Bashou

Berkata bunga-bunga di padang itu.

Bunga Kosmos: Aku merah berkuntum, itu kejayaanku.
Bunga Dahlia: Aku kuning mengembang, itu kejayaanku.
Bunga Semalu: Aku bak kapas tapi tajam, itu kejayaanku.

Setiap bunga yang mengorak kelopak, kejayaan kuntuman itu hak mereka.

Kecantikan itu hak mereka, kejayaan itu hak mereka.

Kalau ingin sama cantik dan sama berjaya, usahalah memupuk baja di taman diri.



Monday, May 31, 2010

Sashiki no Yu

Sashiki no Yu is a big public bath-house facing the Pacific Ocean. You can see this beautiful scene from the new banner I put up.
I go to this bath-house every week. Each time taking about 3 hours in the hot water and thereafter relaxing there till dark.
This is my escape hide-out. I've made some friends there. These friends do not recognize me with my full clothes on, which is an advantage (like the entry below, taking me as a famous actress, whatever!)
Without my glasses, I am half-blind. So I hardly see much "reality" while enjoying myself.
Also, inspiration for my writings bubble up from the hot water.
For those who visit me, I will pull you along this bath-house as well. So get ready for the open show.


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Aku bukan Okama!

Mikawa Kenichi

Lepas ambo keluar dari dewan mandi, ambo menghala terus ke Relax Room. Dalam kamar ini, kami boleh baring-baring berlama-lamaan. Ada kerusi malas yang boleh direbahkan menjadi pangkin tidur.

Dua orang empuan dalam 60 tahun, menoleh ke arah ambo.
Seorang berkata, "Ingatkan engkau Mikawa Kenichi!"

Kening ambo terjungkit! Apa engkau ingat aku ini pondan ke?
Dengan menguatkan suara, ambo kata, "Kan kita dah mandi bersama, apa pulak aku ini Mikawa Keninchi!"
Nada ambo serius.

"Pakaian engkau macam Mikawa!" sorang lagi tambah.
Dahlah, malas betul ambo melayan orang-orang Jepun!

Salah seorang watak dalam novel Pulut sakura serunding kasih, ambo jadikan dengan meniru gaya Mikawa Kenichi.

Sebenarnya Mikawa lelaki tulen (setakat mana ketulenan, ambo belum pasti hehe), pada awal dia meneroka dunia hiburan. Tapi semuanya bertukar apabila kedudukannya dalam carta hiburan naik melambung setelah dia beraksi dengan pakaian perempuan, dia terus kekalkan gaya perempuan dan menampilkan pakaian seksi hingga mutakhir ini. Tapi orang kata (orang yang kata bukan ambo!), dia masih lelaki tulen.

Tak kisahlah apa Mikawa Kenichi buat tapi suka-suka kata ambo ini pondan macam Mikawa, itu sudah melampau!