Sunday, December 23, 2007

Salam Aidil Adha

Selamat menyambut Aidil Adha untuk semua.
Untuk pertama kali, aidil adha tahun ini kami sambut di Madinah Al-Munawarrah. Memang meriah, a totally different experience compared to Malaysian celebration.
Kami sampai di Madinah pada 9 Zulhijjah. Selepas asar dah terasa kemeriahannya.. Rupa-rupanya di Madinah (mungkin di tempat lain juga serupa), sambutan aidil adha dimulakan dengan berpuasa sunat dari 1 Zulhijjah hinggalah ke 9 Zulhijjah. Jadi, menjelang Maghrib 9 Zulhijjah tu, dah berpusu-pusu orang ramai turun ke Masjid Nabawi untuk berbuka puasa. Lebih meriah lagi bila hampir setiap keluarga yang datang membawa makanan untuk berbuka dan bukanlah untuk diri sendiri sahaja tetapi turut disedekahkan. Ada yang datang membawa makanan dengan troli! Selepas Isya' makin ramai yang bersiar-siar atau berehat-rehat di perkarangan Masjid Nabawi. Maklumlah cuaca sejuk sekarang ni... Tak kurang juga yang membeli-belah, bagaikan tiada hari esok.. :-)
Seawal 4 pagi 10 Zulhijjah, dari bilik hotel kami, dah kelihatan kereta bersesakan. Bila dah semakin teruk trafiknya mulalah kelihatan orang ramai berjalan kaki dari merata arah menuju ke Masjid Nabawi. Pastinya untuk bersolat Subuh dan seterusnya menanti Solat Aidil Adha.Rasanya family ni dah terlambat untuk bersolat Aidil Adha di Masjid Nabawi. So, sekeluarga mereka bersolat di tempat terbuka, which I had never seen before in Malaysia..

Pagi raya, nampak semuanya berjalan seperti biasa... Yang tidak kelihatan hanyalah upacara korban.. Kalau di Malaysia, itulah yang akan jadi berita utama Aidil Adha.. tapi di sini, kami pun tak tahu nak dicari di mana.. kalau setakat sekitar kawasan Masjid Nabawi, memanglah tidak kelihatan apa-apa.
Apapun, pagi raya kami adakan acara melawat. Tempat pertama, Jabal Uhod. Kesan peperangan Uhod dan kawasan syuhada Uhod ada di sini. Ramai yang datang menziarah rupanya..
Seterusnya, ingin mencari Masjid Qiblaitain. tapi tak jumpa pulak.. salah baca map la tuh.. takpe, ada banyak masa lagi nak cari .... yang jumpa hanyalah Masjid Quba'..


Apapun, yang pasti raya kali ini, selepas balik dari Madinah, kami sekeluarga semua terus 'knock-out' - demam panas dengan batuk sekali... Sebenarnya, sehingga entry ini ditulis pun, adik and abah masih belum pulih sepenuhnya...

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Gadget Day

Today hubby bought 2 electronic devices, with special discounted price - worth buying with MYR getting strong ^-^:
1. Pda-phone O2 XDA Stealth - SR*99.00
first one hour of charging

busy trying the features

2. Maxtor External Hard Disk 320GB - SR*99.00
..still in the box because hubby still busy with his new O2..


here's where all the shopping was.. HyperPanda

Friday, December 14, 2007

..:Perubahan:..

Contra with the previous post, this entry is about my positive change.. Semakin rajin membuat kek dan biskut.. Apa nak buat, mama and kakyong (panggilan untuk kakak sulung) jauh... kalau tak, order jek kat either of them, mesti dapat... Sekali, dah takde sumber, kan kena buat sendiri.. alhamdulillah, sedar diri la jugak... keh..keh..keh..
Ini hasil yang pertama, sempena Syawal lepas..

Cornflake Madu


Cheese cake
Brownies
Pai Epal

Kek Coklat

..:Pelajaran dan Pengajaran:..

Untuk mulakan entri kali ini, sedikit sejarah latar belakang tentang kami (read: husband and wife). Sejak dilahirkan, memulakan persekolahan rendah, meneruskan persekolahan peringkat menengah, berjaya ke universiti, menamatkan pengajian hingga ke peringkat master, husband dalam proses pengajian PhD, semuanya hanyalah di dalam negara. Tidak pernah sekali pun meninggalkan bumi Malaysia. [cop.. penah sekali ke UK, tu pun seminggu jek.. :-)].
Maka, kedatangan kami ke Yanbu, adalah buat kali pertamanya meninggalkan segala-galanya di Malaysia.. dan buat kali pertama juga memulakan hidup baru dikelilingi orang-orang baru dengan hanya segelintir rakyat Malaysia. Banyak rupanya pelajaran dan pengajaran yang diperolehi dalam tempoh 3 bulan pertama di sini, dan kebanyakannya berkaitan dengan perhubungan sesama manusia ..Unbelievable and Unexplained.. Biarlah dikatakan "terlalu sensitif" atau "ketinggalan zaman", tapi untuk menjadi manusia perlulah ada jati diri, stand for your belief. Jangan jadi seperti lalang, boleh ditiup ke kiri atau ke kanan. Beralah itu perlu tapi biarlah bertempat. Atau mungkinkah kami yang tidak tahu erti hidup di perantauan?
Sebagai penutup, quote seperenggan nasihat dari teman blogger (http://sarahmohdshukor.blogspot.com/2007/12/demi-masa-hadapan-fokuslah.html):
"Jangan pandang sebelah mata tentang tanggujawab membina masa hadapan. Fikirlah dari sekarang. Kerana masa depan yang hendak dibina itu memerlukan titik tolak fokus, praktikal dan doa yang mulanya dari sekarang. Jika tidak, kita tidak akan bertemu tuah kita yang menunggu di hadapan. Besediakah kita kalah kepada tuah?"

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Mist? Haze? Winter?

Look at this photo... It was taken at 8.00 am, one day in November... It is not winter yet in Yanbu... but it looked so hazy...






Saturday, December 1, 2007

Getting a Saudi Arabia's Driving License - Pt. 1

Gosh, most of the time I'll be reading the blog, amazed with the issues wrote by my beloved wife. Well, I guess, I'd better illustrate some of my personal experience. I'll start with the driving license story. Before coming to Yanbu, I got myself an international driving license at Ipoh's JPJ thinking that I'll be using the driving license throughout my stay at Saudi Arabia.

I start using the license to rent a car just a few weeks after arriving at Yanbu. I've used the license 3 times. However, I've been told by my friends that once my residence visa expired (3 months only) the license is not valid anymore. Meaning, I could no longer use it to rent a car and drive in KSA. I need to have Saudi Arabia driving license. I start asking around a got information on the driving license issue. General guidelines compiled from my survey are:

1. Need to have Iqama ( talk about iqama later)
2. Do medical check-up
3. Register yourself for driving class and driving test (SAR100).
4. License will be issued once you pass the test (SAR75 license fee for 5 years).

These apply to foreigner with the exception of westerner and some nationality where they could only transfer/convert their existing driving license which issued from their country to Saudi's driving license. And Malaysia is included in this conversion practice. Wow! this sounds good to me. I don't have to go through those rigid process where some people says they might purposely failed you. Some people need ot take test for several times but couldn't pass. Anyway, these are some general conversion guidelines( i create it myself :) ) :
  1. A copy of Iqama
  2. A copy of passport
  3. A copy of translated driving license
  4. A copy of your original riving license
  5. A letter from your employer saying your are their staff, bla bla, bla.
  6. (Optional) A permission letter from your wife endorsed by her employer saying that she allow you to apply for the driving license. (I got it from my wife as I'm not working)
  7. Need to have translated version of driving license of your country of origin
  8. Do medical check-up (will be explained as how to get the form)
  9. The chief of driving licensing will check your documents (e.g. translation, iqama, passport) and signed it
  10. Pay the license fee SAR75 through bank e.g. Al-Rajhi.
  11. Attached the payment receipt with your document ( make sure all document are kept in a green file) and submit to the counter.
  12. Pick your driving license the next day.
It sounds so simple ... I thought so ... wait for the 2nd part - my experience.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Useful Information?

Salam semua...
for the past one month, saya ada menerima beberapa e-mail yang bertanyakan maklumat tentang perjalanan serta kerjaya saya di KSA ni... alhamdulillah berguna jugak rupanya blog saya ni... terharu pun ada...

bolehlah nak diringkaskan begini...
u need to consider a lot of issues before accepting any job in KSA

1. the job offer and the benefits
salary wise, besar mana pun offernya but if without other benefits from the company, you'll need to give a serious thought on it, if not you'll end up not save a lot from your income which beat one of your main purpose of coming here.

- accomodation : ada company yang sediakan accomodation, senang kerja kita. Tapi kalau tidak disediakan, meaning u need to rent. Dengar cerita sewa rumah kat sini mahal. Sewa apartment 3 bilik dalam 1K. Lagi satu kat sini sewa rumah kena bayar utk. setahun bukan cam kat Malaysia e.g. 2+1, lepas tu byr bulan-bulan. Mungkin gak ada yg monthly, tapi tak pernah dengar lagi la. Rumah apartment banyak jenis kat sini, ada 1, 2, 3 or 4 bilik tidur. Kalau ada anak lelaki and anak perempuan, biasanya kenalah ada bilik asing2.

- school : Kalau dapat benefit untuk international school, senang banyak. So far kat Yanbu ni ada 3 International schools - syllabus US, Filipine and Indian. Paling mahal sekolah US tu, setahun dalam 40K.

- medical : rasanya ubat-ubatan tak expensive sangat (read: rasa jek sebab belum pernah mencari ubat lagi). tapi yang obvious, student sini senang sangat dapat medical leave. and kalau sesapa kena hospitalized, seboleh-bolehnya doktor nak suruh duduk gak kat hospital tu. agaknya tak ramai patients kot... entahlah...

2. the living expenses
- food kat sini sebenarnya murah provided that sanggup makan makanan arab la.. :-) tapi macam myself I still prefer eating malaysian food. boleh nak dapat kat sini segala rempah-ratus, kicap, sos cili semua tu... tapi harga dia mahal sikit - considered barang import. e.g susu pekat 1 tin SR3.50. pendek kata, kalau kita nak maintain kita punya eating style, will be a bit costly.
- eating out is not really an option. sebab sini lelaki and perempuan tak campur.. so, hanya ada beberapa restoren yang sediakan family section. anyway, mc donald and pizza hut are here, and there are family section!!
- intenet access senang nak subscribe tapi mahal. lebih mahal dari harga stremyx ! So, Malaysian... please be grateful for what we have...
- tv satelite ada kat sini (cam astro tu la...) banyak options... kena pilih jek la yang mana berkenaan. kalau nak beli tv jek, boleh dapat channel arab.. tapi kalau nak satelite tv, kena la beli satelite dish tu sekali... Khabarnya, kalau dish yang besar (tak ingat saiz diameternya) boleh dapat siaran tv Malaysia... at least RTM 1.. I've watched RTM 1 in Mecca during last Syawal... seriously...

3. environment
- yanbu is a nice quiet city.. compared to mekah, sini tak panas sangat. kita masih boleh tahan.. tak terik sesangat.. so far saya rasa aman damai jek duduk sini.. pegi keje pagi, petang balik main ngan anak2. luar rumah tak bising... takde mat rempit ke nak memekak dgn motor ke keta ke.. paling best, tiap masuk waktu solat, kita akan dengar azan bersambung-sambung dari satu masjid ke masjid lain. husband boleh jalan kaki jek nak pegi solat tiap waktu..

- women semua berjubah hitam - called abaya... hijab or tutup muka tu mungkin tak compulsory utk foreigners. tapi as muslim, bila jalan tayang muka, org akan tgk semacam jek.. So, ladies if u plan coming here either to work or just accompanying husband, u need to be mentally prepared . women are not free to go anywhere alone. driving is prohibited for women. so, kalau dah biasa ke sana-sini sendiri, nanti takut cultural shock plak. sini, semua pegi ngan husband. For your information, kat sini pun ada gak kes2 yang bukan2 tu.. sejak smpi sini dah berapa kali saya baca paper (in english) jumpa body here and there...not knowing apa dah jadi pada dia..

- Waktu solat semua kedai tutup. zohor tutup, asar tutup, maghrib tutup and isya tutup. so, lepas waktu kerja, dah waktu asar, tak boleh nak ke mana pun. maghrib plak cepat. so antara asar ke maghrib mmg tak boleh nak buat apa... unless setakat berjalan kedai runcit sekitar kwsn rumah.. orang arab aktif waktu malam, esp lepas isya. banyak kedai akan bukak until midnite.

- shopping places ada 2 tepat yang besar - panda hypermarket and star market. ala-ala Giant. other shopping places, u need to go to shops... e.g kedai baju, kedai jubah, kedai mainan....

4. Weather
- cuaca yang selalunya sudah pastilah panas. but for your information, ada summer and winter kat sini... dalam bulan November ni dah mula winter, ada tempat temperature turun sampai below 10 degree celcius. Yanbu, setakat entry ni ditulis baru turun ke sekitar 25 degree. So, pada sesiapa yang akan menunaikan haji tahun ni, alhamdulillah cuaca mungkin sesuai dengan malaysian.

5. near to mekah and madinah
- benefit ni la yang paling besar sekali kita boleh dapat dengan bekerja kat sini... inilah yang saya kejar pun.. yanbu - madinah kalau drive dalam 2 jam jek. yanbu - mekah dalam 4 jam. boleh pegi by bus or plane (read: sini ada airport) or boleh sewa kereta .. sewa kereta senang, harga pun ok. haji pun kita boleh buat. boleh guna pakej sini... khabarnya the best package sini dalam SR 4K.

Sekian coretan buat kali ini.. sekadar mengulas semula pertanyaan2 yang diterima..
Semoga lebih bermanfaat maklumat yang ditambah ini..

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Syawal di Madinah...

Bersambung lagi perjalanan Syawal kami...
setelah berehat sehari di rumah, sempat ke open house seorang teman, punggah pakaian seminggu dari mekah ke jeddah, isi beg dengan pakaian yang baru, kini kami meneruskan lagi perjalanan... destinasi ketiga ialah Madinah Al-Munawarrah - bandar Nabi Muhammad s.a.w.
Hanya 2 jam dari Yanbu ke Madinah. Pemandangan di kiri-kanan jalan agak berbeza jika dibandingkan dengan perjalanan ke Mekah. Ke Mekah, pemandangan lebih kepada padang pasir dengan sesekali kelihatan sekumpulan unta. Manakala, pemandangan ketika ke Madinah lebih kepada bukit-bukau berbatu dengan sesekali kelihatan sekumpulan kambin meragut tumbuhan renek. Sambil terpukau memerhati pemandangan yang berbeza ini, dalam fikiran ligat mengagumi betapa hebatnya Rasulullah dan sahabat-sahabat baginda serta umat Islam ketika itu menentang musuh Islam.
Kami sampai ke Hotel Karam yang berhampiran dengan Masjid Nabawi selepas waktu Zohor. Selesai meletakkan semua beg, terus tuju ke Masjid Nabawi. Agak ketat juga kawalan kerana di setiap pintu masuk ada pengawal keselamatan yang memeriksa setiap orang yang masuk dan setiap beg yang dibawa. Yang pasti ditahan adalah handphone yang berkamera. Luckily I wore jeans under my abaya. Dapatlah menyimpan hp di dalam poket seluar.
Waktu kami sampai sangat sesuai. Seelok selesai menunaikan solat Zohor, pintu untuk ke Raudah dibuka untuk perempuan. Alhamdulillah, tak dapat dilupakan pengalaman pertama sampai ke Masjid Nabawi dapat pula menunaikan solat sunat di Raudah.. Orang memang sangat ramai. Dengan saiz orang Asia yang 'comel-lote' ni (read: bukan perasan ek), senang benar ditolak ke sana-sini... mujur anak-anak tak terlepas dari pegangan. Ketika ingin tunaikan solat sunat di Raudah, dengan 2 anak yang kecil, orang yang ramai, hati pada mulanya risau nak biarkan mereka menunggu mamanya selesai solat. Bukan apa, takut mereka dibawa arus orang ramai. Namun bersyukur sangat kerana dengan tidak semena-mena, ada seorang polis wanita datang membantu mengepung mereka berdua supaya tidak dilanggar oleh orang ramai. Dapatlah mama tunaikan solat sunat dengan tenang di Raudah. Syukur alhamdulillah.
Keesokkan harinya, kami makan tengahari di sebuah restoran Indonesia yang mana bersebelahan pula dengan kedai runcit milik Indonesian. Apa lagi, selepas kenyang perut, memborong sakan la barang keperluan rumah. Ada tempe, tauhu, kangkung, asam jawa, air sirap... asalkan benda yang tak jumpa di Yanbu, semuanya kami borong.
Sudahnya selepas asar juga kami bertolak balik. Dalam perjalanan pulang, sekali lagi diperlihatkan dengan kekuasaan Allah, hujan turun rintik-rintik.. Tak lama dan tak banyak tapi cukup besar rahmatnya dapat melihat keajaiban ini di bumi Saudi.
Boleh dikatakan inilah catatan Syawal yang paling bermakna.. semoga dapat melakukan lagi ziarah ini bersama ahli keluarga...


p/s inilah gunanya cuti raya yang panjang.. dapat dimanfaatkan dengan berkunjung ke bandar-bandar di Saudi...

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Syawal in Jeddah

so the journey continues... (read previous entry)
from Mekah, we drove to Jeddah, which took about 45 minutes. Did I mentioned that among the 4 families, only 1 own a car - Siti and Shah. So, for another 3 families, we rented 1 car and 1 mpv - toyota previa. My family and Yusof's family were in the mpv. En. Sabri's family were using the car. However, En. Sabri's family did not follow us to Jeddah, instead they went back to Yanbu.
We reached Jeddah about Zohor prayer.. We arrived at a place called Balad. Neither of the 3 families have reached Jeddah by car. So, Balad it is... Almost every shops were closed and its looks like a dead town. Everybody started to wonder.."are we at the right place". After checking-in at a hotel, we rested until night time.


after isya', we went out to have a look at how Balad is at night. and it really give us a surprise, Balad was so different than what we saw at day time. All shops are now open, everyone is everywhere, either busy shopping or just window shopping. and the best part was, we get to drink "air tebu"... bestnya....
the next day, before leaving Jeddah, we have our lunch at a Thai restaurant.. feel good to be able to eat Tom Yum.. eemm..yum..yumm.. Last stop in Jeddah is Aziz Mall. A mall just like KLCC, everything is expensive.. we had dinner there before heading straight back to Yanbu.
That night when we reached Yanbu, put everything in hall, then go to sleep. Tiring but enjoyable. One different experience celebrating syawal in KSA.

p/s winter cloth in KSA is cheap! In Jeddah, I bought 2 winter coats for my daughters and cost me only about RS 50..

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Eid Mubarak

even though it is 17th Syawal today, but I hope it is not too late to wish all Eid Mubarak. SELAMAT HARI RAYA dan MAAF ZAHIR BATIN.
I've been too lazy to write lately... perhaps i'm enjoying the Eid holidays so much :-)
Just like 1st Ramadhan, alhamdulillah, my family was able to celebrate 1st Syawal 1428 in Mekah. We went to Mekah with another 4 families, Thursday - the last day of Ramadhan.
Friday 12/10/2007 was the Eid. Eid celebration here is nothing like Malaysia, except that the Eid prayer can be performed at the MasjidilHaram. It was so joyful celebrating Eid back in Malaysia. [Well, this is another experience I need to face] However, the night before Eid, there were so many people on the road - some doing last minute shopping (read: I'm one of them, that's how I know there were many people) and many were doing nothing.
Breakfast at the Hotel were all Malaysian-Eid-dishes!! We're not missing anything then.. :-) There were rendang, ketupat, nasi impit and kuah kacang, serunding and cookies.
After Friday prayer, we were invited to 4 open-houses organized by Tabung Haji staffs. There, we felt the real Malaysia-Eid celebration with all Malaysian-Eid-dishes, including kuah durian!! We left the last house just about the Maghrib prayer. So happy...that's what I can say...
We left Mekah second day of Syawal, heading for Jeddah.. stories coming up in next entry..

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Iftar di Yanbu

Dah nak sampai ke penghujung bulan Ramadhan.. Meriah jugak iftar di sini.. dengan komuniti melayu yang kecil, asyik bertukar-tukar rumah untuk beriftar. Rasanya tak pernah seaktif ini beriftar masa kat Malaysia dulu.. :-)
Bermula di rumah kami sebenarnya pada Khamis 20/9/07... buat secara join-venture dengan penghuni tingkat 2, 3 dan 4. Kami berkongsi jadi tuan rumah (venue: my house). Juadah utama nasi putih dan lauk-pauk serta kuih-muih. Masing-masing ambil bahagian untuk memasak sejenis-dua masakan. Bila dah kumpul, banyak rupanya makanan... Memang kekenyangan la kami hari tu. Siap boleh dibungkuskan untuk masing-masing bawak balik, habuan untuk sahur pula.




Selang 3 hari, Ahad 23/9/07, dapat lagi panggilan iftar. Kali ini diadakan di rumah Siti dan Shah, dan ini lebih merupakan perjumpaan dengan semua Malaysian yang ada di Yanbu, terutamanya untuk berkenalan dengan mereka yang baru sampai seperti kami. Kali ni lebih meriah kerana lebih ramai yang datang termasuk non-muslim.




Hujung minggu, Rabu, berarak pula ke rumah Iskandar - a singaporean. Disebabkan hari bekerja tak sempat kami sediakan juadah apa-apa. Apa lagi, call for home-delivery la jawabnya. Sini nasi bukhari dan lauk-pauknya ada sediakan home-delivery service.
Selasa 30/9/07 kami beriftar sesama kami - my house, tingkat 1 dan tingkat 2. Saja nak bermeriah sebab family Sadimin dan Juwana (tingkat 2) akan balik berhari-raya ke Singapore. They went back on Wednesday, the next day. Juadah, semuanya from delivery.. :-)
Akhir sekali (buat masa ni..), Khamis lepas 4/10/07, beriftar di rumah Kak Ayu pulak. Menu utama - laksa.. eemmm... lama tak makan laksa.. Laksa ni import dari Malaysia ada di hypermarket sini.
Alhamdulillah.. dapat beriftar sana-sini.. dapat jugaklah merapatkan silaturahim antara kami yang berpuasa dan bakal beraya jauh dari kampung halaman.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Ramadhan in Yanbu

Alhamdulillah dah 20 hari umat islam berpuasa.. Pengalaman berpuasa di sini tak rasa perbezaannya sangat. kalau ada pun, yang paling ketara ialah tiada bazar ramadhan di sini.. hehe.. home-cook everyday.. Anyway, ada 3 perkara yang menariknya berpuasa di Yanbu ni, which I never experience back in Malaysia.
Firstly, waktu imsak lebih kurang pukul 5.00am dan berbuka lebih kurang 6.20pm. Waktu antara Maghrib dan Isya' sangat panjang.. Kiranya sempat la berehat kejap bagi makanan turun ke perut :-) Compare to malaysia, waktu antara Maghrib dan Isya' pendek, kita akan sentiasa terkocoh-kocoh, berbuka, maghrib dan isya'.
Second, waktu bekerja berubah sepanjang Ramadhan. Kebanyakan pejabat dan bank akan beroperasi mulai pukul 10.00am dan berakhir pada pukul 4.00pm. Begitu jugalah untuk sekolah dan kolej. So, like myself after sahur, bolehlah berkemas rumah, basuh dan sidai baju serta sediakan makanan untuk children. Balik petang nanti, hanya perlu sediakan juadah untuk berbuka sahaja.
Third, cuti untuk menyambut Eid Mubarak sangat panjang, tak payah apply cuti macam kat Malaysia. Esok dah mula cutinya; 4/10 hingga 19/10. Tak payah la nak pening kepala nak pikir berapa hari nak apply cuti, berapa hari cuti tinggal, bila nak mula buat kuih raya... Cuti dah diberi, so you can plan for your Eid. Syoknya kalau dapat cuti macam ni kat Malaysia.. hehe.. mimpi la..

Saturday, September 29, 2007

It's one month..

Today is 29/9/2007.. I have been here in Yanbu for 1 month now. So far so good.. everything is smooth.. living ok, work ok, wheather ok, food ok. Hopefully, 1 year and 11 months from now will not be a problem to me and to my family. insya-allah..

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Marhaban baby girl ..

lamanyaaaa tak update blog... frust betul la sebab bila upload gambar, takleh view pun... so, i'm not sure how the pics look like. but a friend told me, the pics are there... cuma tak tersusun laa... alaaa... tak beshnya.........
semalam 26/9 my best friend baru melahirkan anak ketiga - a baby girl, yang ditunggu-tunggu sebab both first and second children are boys. you must be very happy, finally dapat girl... boleh la nak beli dolls, gauns, hair accessories... selama ni dia beli semua tu untuk diri sendiri, walaupun anak lelaki dah 2 org, masih beli patung beruang... hahahaha.... jangan marah kawan... usik-mengusik dari jauh...

By the way, siapa belikan you present eekkk? sebelum saya berhenti kerja, sayalah tukang beli hadiah untuk orang... ketiadaanku, siapa penggantinya? hehehe... Anyway, my friend, bila dah bagi nama let me know... kalau nak nama orang arab, boleh la I suggest nama students kat sini... antara nama popular sini, Maha. Students kata maksudnya cantik.. Boleh la tu kalau nak bagi anak nampak cantik sentiasa.. Apa pun bagilah nama anak yang bermaksud baik... nama bagaikan doa juga kan...
Selamat menjaga baby girl...

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Before 29/8/2007

why before 29/8? that was the last few days in malaysia...
dulu tak sempat nak update blog... sebuk dengan persiapan... streamyx pun dah stop... anak plak tak sihat... pendek kata, macam-macam la jadi on those last days...
2 weeks before 29/8, kami buat farewell party (untuk diri sendiri.. hahaha..), 2 days in a row! just inviting our close friends, mine and hubby's. fun but tiring...


then we started packing... mula dengan pakaian... pilih punya pilih, banyak la pulak.. dah penuh 2-3 beg for 4 of us... mak aiiii....so, proses pilih-buang pakaian kena buat a few times because we need to spare some space for other things like books, food and necessary accessories. That was not an easy task you know!!


After all things are put in the bags, we weighted them using our weight scale . Not accurate though but enough to give us information that the begs are excessing the weight allowed for the 4 of us!! Alamak.... start again the pilih-buang process... very tiring..
End-up, at the airport our begs had excessed the weight - 26 kg. Believe it or not, Emirates charge RM2500++ for that!! That is too much... no way, with that sum I could buy so much things than what we have in the begs! Melampau gila harganya... So, we decided to load-off one beg which is full of food and later my mum will post them to me., which I believe will be much cheaper..

Anyway, while doing all this process, I really don't have the 'sad' feeling leaving my house, my home town, my family... I just don't feel anything yet.. Only people around me were asking.. eemmm... maybe I have been too tired with all the preparation that I don't even have the time to feel sad.. maybe... It was only at the airport when I had all those feeling, sad to leave behind my parents, family, nephews, nieces, aunties, uncles, cousins.... all are at the airport..

Good bye to all... thanks for being there for me always... I'll see you all again next year, insya-allah..



Monday, September 17, 2007

Ramadhan di Mekah

Alhamdulillah untuk pertama kalinya dapat menyambut 1 Ramadhan di Mekah pada tahun ini. Untuk pertama kalinya juga, dapat menunaikan umrah. Semoga ibadat diterima Allah swt.
Kami sekeluarga bersama a family's friend bertolak ke Mekah pada pagi Khamis 13/9 menaiki kereta (kami sewa kereta).

Dari Yanbu, kami lalui lebuhraya 'with something to look at' di kiri kanan jalan... but after 30min leaving Yanbu, yang kelihatan hanyalah padang pasir... di sesetengah tempat adalah beberapa rumpun pokok (kalau boleh dipanggil pokok la..hehe)

We stopped at Miqat Jurfah untuk berniat umrah... bermulalah kami dalam keadaan berihram.. Another 2 hours of journey from there, finally we reached Mekah Al-mukaramah.... Ya Allah... tak dapat bayangkan perasaan masa tu... macam tak percaya boleh sampai ke Mekah (baru nampak bandar Mekah tu :-)) ... If I don't accept this job offer, I won't know when I'll get this chance..

Bila masuk jek ke Tanah Haram, mata dah mencari-cari.. manalah MasjidilHaram nih... tertoleh-toleh..terjenguk-jenguk.. tak sabar rasanya... Selepas check-in hotel, berehat sekejap untuk lepaskan penat, kami pun berjalan ke MasjidilHaram. Melangkah masuk sahaja ke dalam MasjidilHaram, I was speechless... apatah lagi bila melihat Kaabah.. rasa nak menitis air mata... We had our Zohor prayer in MasjidilHaram. Lepas tu kami mulakan ibadah tawaf... after Asar prayer, continued with Saie.. Alhamdulillah, walaupun berpuasa dan keletihan, masih mampu mengagahkan diri menyempurnakan ibadah umrah.. Semoga diterima Allah dan semoga berpeluang lagi untuk ke sana..

Jumaat, sempat menunaikan solat Jumaat di MasjidilHaram dan kemudiannya menunaikan tawaf wida'... kami berbuka puasa hanya di dalam kereta dengan air zam-zam, air mangga, cup cake (thanks to siti) dan kurma. Itu pun sudah mengenyangkan sebab dalam keletihan, air yang lebih menyelerakan dari makanan... hehehe...

p/s i tried to upload some pictures while in Mekah but fail to do so.. not sure why... i'll try again later...

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

After 2 weeks ...

Salam to all...
it has been 2 weeks in Yanbu, KSA. Everything seems going smooth...
we're given an apartment, ground floor, 2 bedrooms, fully air-conditioned, fully-furnished, fully carpeted... alhamdulillah... that's what we can say once we stepped in this new house. Just add some 'kitchen equipments' to complete the house... not forgetting this internet connection and TV...
Living here is so peaceful even in daytime.. in daytime it's either people going to work, school or just stay at home.. not many shops are open.. they'll start their business normally after Asar prayer and will continue until midnite! The only hypermarket here - HyperPanda, open until 1 am! The arabs people are so active at night, I was told.
Now about my work. 5 minutes from house and i'll arrive at Yanbu University College, Female Campus. Here in KSA, university are separated into Male and Female Campuses. Male lecturers only teach male students and female lecturers only teach female students. In my department CS/MIS, there are 12 teachers (thats what students call us) with 4 saudis, 2 pakistanis and the rest are malaysians. Conquer by the malaysians...we speak malay like there's nobody in the staff room... hehehe... oh ya.. i travel with taxi to work and also to other places..
Many of the students here do not speak English fluently. Sometimes they have to use sign language to make me understand. Well, they can't speak arabic with me, then i won't understand. Must go to an arabic class!!
That's about it after 2 weeks spending life in Yanbu, KSA. More updates coming up, since the internet connection is now on...

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Ahlan KSA

Alhamdulillah, selamat juga sampai ke destinasi yang dituju... akhirnya, kami sekeluarga selamat berlepas pada Rabu 29/8/2007 dari KLIA menaiki Emirates Airline menuju ke Yanbu, KSA. Perjalanan bermula pada pukul 12.55 am dari KLIA ke Dubai International Airport. Then, dari Dubai berlepas pulak ke Jeddah. Bertolak 2.30pm (waktu tempatan) ke Yanbu Airport.
Alhamdulillah, perjalanan agak lancar... Biasalah ada sikit-sikit 'toing-toing' sana-sini.. maklumlah, kita ni non-arabic speaking... payah nak paham..
Oklah, samapi sini dulu yang sempat.. ni pun menumpang pc orang.. later sambung citer lagi..
p/s not sure whether the pics are ok.. cause when I uploaded, doesn't look good...






Monday, August 13, 2007

Route to KSA : Process 8

Now, it's time to make airline tickets reservation..
actually, dah buat dah... masa zaman 'silence' tu... :-)
Fuuuhhhhh... this is the most pening-kepala process... i thought the previous one is tough.. this is more tougher..
Reason: nak dapat tiket saudi airline, teramat la susah nyer... now is peak season, all the Arabs going back home after spending their summer holidays here.. malaysian lak going for umrah.. sekali booking, masuk ke waiting list yg tah ke berapa ratus... that will be very long... tah bila lak boleh masuk senarai..
MAS plak jgn la mimpi... percaya tak 2 adults and 2 children costs us about RM 20K!! Kenapa, tak percaya ker? boleh bankrup oooooo...
Kena la switch to other alternatives, using other airlines... dah try Sri Lankan Airline, agak mahal gak sbb kena transit ke colombo dulu.. ada lak orang kata, jgn guna Sri Lankan sebab whether kat Colombo selalu tak elok, selalu masuk air pocket yang menakutkan... ye ke selalu?
One more option, Emirates airline.. alhamdulillah, masih ada kekosongan on 29/8... harganya lebih murah dan berpatutan...
Insya-allah, we'll be going off to KSA with Emirates Airline on 29/8/2007
any changes will be updated from time to time..

Route to KSA : Process 7

Visa has been approved last week... finally!! punya la susah.. no... no, that was not susah... tapi terlalu banyak birokrasi...
  • letter of meningitis vaccine is supposed to be separated, meaning each family member should have one letter.. even though, I think a photostat copy should be okay with the original letter is there..
  • next issue is bank draft ... we bought the bank draft from a bank in Ipoh.. and the embassy said, must be from bank in KL.. lerrrr... what's the different, just a matter of few days.. cash tak nak plak.. kalau cash, lagi cepat dapat duit tu...
  • do you know that dealing with saudi embassy, morning is for submission, afternoon is only for collection. so, once your application is rejected, you need to wait the next day to re-submit.

Friday, August 10, 2007

.. I'm Back ..

After a few weeks of silence, now I'm back to the virtual world.
Silence for a reason... You know who you are and you know who I am
Last discussion with a blogger friend, I decided not to continue this silence anymore.
I write as I think about something, I display photos as I enjoy taking them..
Memories should remains.. Don't let it go but don't let it stops your future..

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Route to KSA : Visa Document

The visa document is finally here!! RC of Yanbu delivered through DHL. The DHL people sent it to my house around 9 am this morning... while i'm at working..('too efficient' that he called me in front of the house??) so, have to get my neighbour's help - Mr. Wong <..thanks..>
Eager to go home to read the content...
Surat.... tunggu kepulangankuuuuuuuuuu............

Friday, July 13, 2007

Route to KSA : Process 6

Finally, all necessary documents are now ready.. Process 6 - Good Conduct Form a.k.a police clearance is already ready. Just a certificate authenticate us (hubby and me) with no criminal records whatsoever..
What we need to do next is wait for the visa document from RC of Yanbu. The officer had promised me in 6 weeks time it'll be ready... but that 6 weeks has long gone ... isk..isk..isk.. anyway, last Monday received an e-mail from him, saying that the document should be ready by end of this week or early next week. ok, let's wait... by the way, it's already weekend for them.. absolutely I need to wait for next week then!!

Extra Info about KSA:
  • working days - Saturday to Wednesday
  • weekend - Thursday and Friday
  • RC of Yanbu - Royal Commissioner of Yanbu

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

.. busy.. busy.. busy ..

Getting busier this week... New semester has just started.. Students here and there, all over places.. excited seeing their friends after long holiday...
As for me, since i'm leaving in august, i'm will only teach 2 courses (different codes but are actually similar), which are for part 1 students. aaarrggghhhh... tak bestnyaaaa....
These new students look so excited, getting themselves adapt with totally new environment.. leaving school days, trying to be adult now (siswa/siswa la katakan..). It is only the first week though... wait until another 3-4 weeks and we'll see the true colors... :-)

Friday, July 6, 2007

The Sun

Sun Rise

Sunset


..: Subhanallah - cantik alam ciptaan ALLAH ni .. Don't you think :..

Nature day ...

Yesterday, my friends and me went to Kem Timad, Chepor. We are actually in the process of surveying places for Academic Excellence Program. Kem Timad is one of the place in our list. The best part of Kem Timad is the surrounding - like a fruits orchard.. so, peaceful with a stream running nearby.. That's the story of the day (not the program .. :-))

Durian Tree
Cempedak (Jackfruit) Tree
Pulasan Tree
Assam Tree
(pokok ni hasilkan asam keping - tak tahu nama sebenar)
Padi sedang menguning
Stream
(running from a nearby waterfall)

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Awana Kijal - journey continues...

Rekabentuk Awana menarik, kawasan lobi berkonsep terbuka, luas dan lapang (bumbungnya transparent nun di tingkat yang tertinggi)
Sepanjang berada di Awana Kijal, kami tak keluar ke mana pun.. kecuali ke Dungun, rumah teman yang pernah bekerja di Perak dan keluar untuk makan malam. Rest of the day, enjoying the facilities provided in Awana... Banyakkkkkkkkk sangatttttttttt...... (read: kagum giler ni) Best betul.. puas hati... Antara semua hotel yang dah masuk, inilah yang ada facilities yang banyak... Kiranya, kalau setakat semalam dua tu, tak payah keluar tempat lain pun takpe..
giant congkak -
giant chess -
ni pulak laluan dari giant chess ke swimming pool -
giant swimming pool - swimming pool bersambung antara tempat kanak-kanak dengan dewasa, jadilah giant..
giant mushroom -
giant pondok -
giant hippo -
table tennis aka ping-pong -
beach volleyball -

Habis dua hari kat Awana tak terasa pun... sesiapa nak cuti-cuti malaysia, silalah ke Awana Kijal... gerenti puas hati...
Ahad, selepas check-out dari hotel , kami pun bertolak balik - 4 kereta berkonvoi ... (obviously my car is not in the photo). Kali ni, bijak sikit.. balik ikut arah selatan... dari Awana ke Kemaman, then Cherating, where we stopped and bought keropok lekor, sebelum Kuantan masuk ke Lebuhraya Pantai Timur... keluar kat Karak, masuk jalan Genting Highland, turun ikut Batang Kali, masuk ke Lebuhraya Utara Selatan melalui Bukit Beruntung sampailah ke Ipoh... Journey much better this time because most of the time we're using highways. tapi adik tetap tido seround , kakak enjoying the journey
anyway, alhamdulillah, semuanya selamat dan budak-budak pun tak meragam sepanjang perjalanan sehinggalah sampai rumah...