Saturday, October 24, 2009

Raya 02 Open House


I still have not had the chance to write about my 2009 Openhouse tho I have posted the pics over at I thought I should for the purpose of record post the one we did 7 years ago here. It was posted in late Dec 2002 in KB76ers' forum at Delphi. Obviously then, I did not have a blog to keep myself amused.

Compare this with the pics and what I wrote in fotopages on the 2009 Open House. Interetsing - to me at least. Well, almost 7 years on! How things have changed since that day seven years ago.

Dear Friends,

I am still in cloud nine, a week after the open house and why not? Three who came were my ex-classmates whom I had not seen for 22 years, another one drove all the way from Melaka (or Terengganu - depending on the perspective) and yet another came even though he was down with fever. I have not seen many others for many years now.

It was supposed to be a small one - housewarming for selected neighbours, and open house for relatives, officemates, KB76 nearby and my study group at UIA. It escalated into the whole neighbourhood, KB76 and all my present classmates at the uni, with me having to put up the white tent, so much so someone was commenting that he thought there was a wedding khenduri going on! For sure it was not mine (and no, I am not hinting at anything here), and my kids are still a long way to having one. :-) ( For that it would have to be a blue tent, to use the Tenda Biru’s song by Desi Ratnasari.)

To be honest, the main draw card was the K676 group for me. I meet with other groups every day or week, but I have not seen most of you for years. In fact my mom was commenting that practically every other person she spoke too was either my ex-classmate or the wife of one of you.

(Caption: Syed Abu and family chatting with the blogger before the tahlil)

Syed Abu led the tahlil at about 1220 hours. It was more of a doa selamat with some neighbours and relatives. He came with his wife and youngest four. And I am talking about his children ;-)

Around 1330 hours, KB76 starts coming in. Zaharah and family were the first. As I was trying to figure out who they were, she introduced herself first thereby saving the host from further embarrassment. What can one expect after 22 years? It was great seeing her.

I particularly remember her for giving the winning answer to one Kuiz Sejarah competition (my partners were Aliza and NorArt) – and she was not even a contestant. Can’t recall which class we beat for bronze medal, but would not have done it without her help downstage.

(Caption: Soraya and Zaharah and respective husband with the blogger. Razin's wife is seen chatting on extreme right with Sarah.)

I honestly were wondering who were the Datuk and Datin coming to my open house as I dont recall knowing anyone of that stature. My oh my, it was another of my ex-classmates. I'd swear, if I were to pass by her anywhere in KL, I would not have known it. Soraya and I share the same hometown and yet we have not met for over 22 years. But one thing for sure, none of the ladies who came to the open house (Zaharah, Soraya and Aliza) looks like they are approaching 40's, while the host looks like someone approaching 50's. No wonder someone told him once that may be, just may be, his parents lost his birth cert and had to make new one for him and hence the jumble up on his date of birth ;-)

(Caption: CEO Razin and the blogger chatting)

I believe Razin and family were the next to come. Thanks for coming dude, even if I had not been active for the past year with KB76. But he wanted to make a safety and risk assessment check on my house! I was afraid that he is going to close down on my open house after such a tour and hence managed to force him to take a bite first. He mellowed down a bit after that, and must have given the dining and kitchen an OK rating when he passed through them to clean his hand. Phew! And it was thoughtful of you to bring the house-warming gift.

Man Ahmad came with his kid, and he had to leave soon after as he has a few open houses to go. Sorry for not being able to chit-chat, Man.

(Caption: Kodeq and Jamil at the lunch table. This is the n-th time the blogger is grinning. Can you not see it?)

I lost track who was next, but they may be Kodek and family and Jamil and family. Thanks for coming, friends. I had been trying to track Kodek down for weeks and even enlisted Zul to help me. Managed to track him at the very last moment. The funny moment was when Hada (was it Jamil?) and Kodek trying to gauge or size each other up, one not knowing the other. I love this! I am not the only with bad memory. Kodek and I were good friends before SPM, and he would be commenting on my love for Sudir’ songs.

Jamil is such a doting father with his new baby. And thanks for trying to get me to have one too. I don’t think so, brother. My days changing napkins and buat susu are over ;-)

Japaq came with his clients. Hope you were able to close the deal over the gulai nangka ikan masin.

Sabirin was the other person I have not seen for 22 years. I must admit I can recognize him anywhere. He has not changed at all. All the best with the upcoming Haj, Sabirin. Semoga mendapat Haji yang mabrur.

An, Liza and family were there too. To be honest, I owe the open house to them as they had invited us to their house many years ago. I told her that my problem coming was that my kids would not want to go as they would not eat the normal fare but roti canai. So when we were there, we found that Liza had cooked roti canai for them! Payback time was when I managed to get Liza and her kids for a second round in the dining room! An would not - must be on diet, eh An?

An and I were sizing up our kids too. He told me that his daughter is very tall and is indeed taller than her parents, or for sure Liza. Not wanting to be beaten, I told him he should see my eldest too. We did not put them side by side, but I think my son won the contest hands down even though he is a year younger. I dare not compete on the academic side though. Cannot beat the daughter of two mathematicians!

Hada was there too. How come solo saja, bro? And sorry for the lack of cold drinks. It was such a hot day under the tent and this host has been slow with the drinks. Sorry. Shafie, my pingpong partner, whose house is within the 40-house radius to be considered a neighbour was there also.

Zul came with the family. It was good to see you and family again Zul. Your kids are adorable. I didnt realize when you left actually. Sorry if we werent able to sit down and chit-chat. That is the problem of doing an open house of this magnitude. May be over lunch sometime.

Zai and family drove all the way from Melaka as they were attending a wedding there. As far as I am concerned they drove all the way from KT! I really appreciate your effort. Zai and I went a long way from KB to Perth (before I moving on to Melbourne) to Dungun, and I think I have practically told everyone how we met up again in the late 80’s in a grocery shop in Dungun.

He (Zai) waited till about 5.30 pm for the next guy to turn up. In fact I had to call him up. I guess I must have woke him up and in his groggy, deep baritone voice (that would make Barry White proud) told that he was having the fever and may not make it. I told him of all the people who were waiting for him. Guess what? In 30 minutes he was here with his big bike. One can really sense that he was sick, so it was a gallant effort by Mat Jepun to come.

All these can bring tears to one's eyes. From friends I have not seen in 22 years, to friend who had to drive a long way, to friend who was sick and of course many others who had to re-arrange the family schedules to make it to my open house. I had not been going to any gathering the past year due to other commitment, and yet this was of no consideration to them. I am deeply honoured and really appreciate all those who had made it or had intended to come. In synopsis, Zul Golok said he would try to make it some other day, Azli was not in town, Nor Art in the end could not make it, Abu and family were down with fever. Najib made it over the weekend and found that his wife and I shared the same alma mater (primary school). This is indeed a small world.

(They are of course other classmates that I have been wanting to see. Roshaima (could not come as she has a wedding to attend), Amizah, Sahara, Junaidah, An, Salina, Budi, Mat Raman, Jef, and many others. Of course, top on my list would be our dear and precious Minee. I have always wondered about her whereabouts. )

There are a lot of shortcoming. I have not been able to personally sit down with all of you during lunch. Cold drinks have been too slow to come. The first group (Zaharah, Soraya, Razin etc) missed some of the afternoon tidbits. Some cannot eat gulai nangka and there was no alternative. Of course my biggest regret is that I was not able to sit down with all of you individually as a gracious host. My apology. If I were to do this again, I will make it on a smaller scale with perhaps one group at a time, so that I can really mingle.

Some said that I look like a YB giving away Raya goodies to their kids. Actually been lobbying many political parties (government and opposition alike) to give me a seat but to no avail. So I was hoping to entice the younger generation (your kids) for their future votes ;-). You guys think I can give Amir or Mat Yus a run for their money?

(Yeah, right. In my dream. I am still ill-at-ease in public. )

Thank you friends for coming. I hope to reciprocate your effort sometimes in the future.

Your indebted hosts,

Rahman Hariri, Siti Sarah, Arif Kashani, Akmal Hariri

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