Friday, April 06, 2007

Yes that how I was at Federal at the end of the 60's. We stay there until 1971 December where will move to idyllic Terenggannu. It was in Federal Hill that things started to change,bit by bit, without people realising it. It always have been my Family way to welcome families to our home. To give them a roof over their head, to school them if they were to poor to go to school. This was the case as far as I remember. It was a tradition of sort to us beginning with my Great Grandma till my father. I also have that habit, it is difficult to break.It does lead to abuses, sometimes we are kind but in return they turn to be ungrateful. When my Mom assume the new throne in the house, slowly and surely these relative would go to be change by her own relatives, sisters and brothers. My Granduncle who was responsible for this arrange marriage, whose sons were part of the family were send back to the villages some would follow my Grandma to her new abode in Taiping to be school there. That was how it was. I was too young to know this upheaval, they would confide to me later on. She's not ogre, it was just one of those thing to be expected. My Real Mom was an orphan so she would embrace my father's family as hers. It was expected, even now when my brothers wife is concern I don't get along with them. Call me old fashion but I do believe sincerely the adage or believe when a woman gets married she leave the nest and "belong" to her husband. (It is hyphenated by the way) This doesn't mean the husband own her but she must learn to respect the husband side of the family because they have welcome her to their bosom. You need not usurp one to carry the other but learn that tradition does dictates, especially in Malaysia, the husband families should be given more regard. This tension exist until now. But when we young we are not aware of it. It was here too, I was ask to move from my parents' room to sleep with the servants and the cousins. My brother found ourselves off limits from my father's room. It was OK after all in the movies we all have our own rooms but in Asia it was not the same. we have extended families, the servants room were occupied by my elder brothers and uncle.(they were 2 servants room). Upstairs there was two huge rooms the master and the Females room, both have attached bathrooms. I and Put stay with the female, the Servants and my Mom Sisters. I was still bottling then, I have to have my milk in the bottle, my Mom made a scene so I quit. It was I believe I should do, although my father loves me to use the bottle, he has a kick out of it. later on when it comes to his own Son who was born in 1968, she didn't make such a fuss when he was on the bottle until he was 11. It made me wonder,why? But I guess I am not his son and never will be. In Federal Hill is where I grew up, I learn to do everything on my own. I've learn to change from a spoilt brat to something else. To me it was alright, I am growing up now and i have a baby brother, who incidentally I gave the pet name too. I call him Ketet and it sort of stuck. We all have pet names, my father, he love naming or giving pet names to his kids. Starting with, Din, Lat(Bulat or round), Pat, Put, Tot, Ketet, Bab(not Bob), the two last girls were known as Ucuk (Busuk or smelly) and Ucik (kecik the smallest). There was also a neighbour I remember, who stays near Syed house, his wife was very sexy and later got divorce. She was Normah Yuzie, a Malay Starlet who later would die of a tragic automobile accident. At Federal Hill is when I started to go to school. It was a terrifying moment. I step into a kindergarten with my new Mom and Dad and suddenly I found myself surrounded by kids, my Mom and Dad has abandon me!!. My teacher was an Indian lady whom I don't quite remember well, I was still half blind then. In Jalan Kelantan, Federal Hill where we stay we have with us my father's cousin and my Mom's brother and sister staying with us, we also have My father's brother Encik Rashid who works in the Post Office as a clerk and now presently is staying with me. He is a bachelor, never marry so I think I end up that way to. His life is a bit sad, he was my father second youngest siblings. He did well in his senior Cambridge and got an offer to go to the University to further his studies. At that point of time it was a good deal, but you must have a signature sign by your parents or guardian in the application form. And all he wanted was his father's signature, at that time just after Merdeka, my Grandfather has just been release form detention camp. Due to the late Aziz Ishak who intervene his death penalty was commuted to and was sentence as a political prisoner. So in the late 50's or early 60's he was already out and stay with his 'lover' my Aunt in Kampong Bharu, Kuala Lumpur. So my Uncle went to his house to ask for his signature and seek his blessing, after all he wanted so much his Dad's love. The house was bolted shut, the windows were close and they were not in,and it was not that they didn't know he was coming, but he refuse to accept his son! Why, I didn't know? All I can tell you my father did want to sign but he refuse, he lost hope that his father doesn't want him and they were not in talking terms until in 1992 when my father suffer a stroke. It was really a poignant moment when two old man would be hugging at my father's bed in the hospital and made up. It brought tears to my father's eyes that he made a remark that he need to nearly die before they made up. I do not understand why my Grandfather refuses to sign, he has his reason, all I can tell you my Uncle is a bit soft, a Liberace who would deny his preference until when he dies. He will always be in the closet although we know the truth. I have to go now happy reading!


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