Sunday, 30 July 2006

AIKO - Seat 19C

Last Thursday I was on a flight from Miri to Kuala Lumpur. I checked-in with a colleague and she was given seat 19A while I got 19B. I was hoping that when we board the plane we will be at our seats before passenger 19C arrived. As the mentioned in an article in MAS's inflight magazine, most often than not, if you ever get the window seat during check-in, the passenger occupying the aisle seat would be there before you. The article claimed that 'the window passenger will arrive at the seat after the aisle passenger is comfortabaly seated' is a theory. And true enough it happened to me and my friend!!! Luckily, passenger 19C was a nice, young girl, may be about Siti Nurhaliza's age (that was what I had in mind when I saw her).
When we have settled down, I politely asked passenger 19C where was she from, if she is alone, etc.....

Passenger 19C's name is Aiko. She is a Japanese who is two years younger than SN. She is on holiday in Sarawak with her parents, an elder sister and her niece. For the whole of the 2 hours-plus journey, Aiko and I talked and talked and talked. (
My friend, Sleeping Beauty, was ofcourse sleeping most of the time). Aiko is an English teacher in Japan and showed great enthusiasm to learn Malay. During the Miri-KLIA flight, I managed to teach her satu, dua, tiga, empat, ...sepuluh, nasi goreng (she already knew ayam), ayam goreng, mee goreng. I gave her some general idea about the Malay language - it has no plural nouns and no tenses like in English, no gender forms like French and Arabic. I told her Malay is an easy language to learn, blah....blah....She was motivated and asked me if she can come to Malaysia to study, she asked me whether universities in Malaysia except foreigners, etc.

Aiko and I talked about so many things. Luckily I remembered to give her my professional card and she said that she would email me when she get back to Japan. Before we said goodbye, I gave Aiko's niece some sweets and in return she gave me an origami piece - a polygonal ball (it is something like a ball, but it is not rounded like a ball and it has many edges).

Well, that was my most enjoyable domestic flight on Malaysia's national carrier, MAS!!! Actually, there is something else which Aiko asked me that is worth sharing....I will try to include that in my next entry, insya Allah.

Thursday, 20 July 2006


Assalamualaykum everyone. Anyone out there wondering why I was ‘quiet’? Something terrible happened to my first and last daughter. They were both weakly infected by virus. It was no ordinary virus, mind you! Virus brought by the evil mosquitoes!!! Yes indeed! They were taken ill (very ill) due to the dengue fever, or the BREAKBONE FEVER! Yeap, this fatal fever causes severe pain in the joints – it feels like some one is breaking up all your bones!!!

Actually, Atiqah started to have fever on the 2nd July 2006. My husband took Atiqah to Pusat Rawatan Islam Az-Zahrah (PRIA), Bandar Baru Bangi and an FBC (full blood count) was done. It was at the low end of 200. She continued having high fever and the visit to PRIA on the 5th July indicated that her FBC is now 106. Upon the paediatrician’s advice Atiqah was admitted to PRIA. I was actually staying in at the Eastin Hotel in Petaling Jaya attending a meeting but had to leave early because of Atiqah’s condition since my husband has gone for his consultancy work in KK, Sabah. (Thank you Pn Nawal for being understanding and allowing me to take care of my daughter. Pn Nawal bt Salleh is my superior at MES, Putrajaya).

My darling Atiqah was warded but Arifah need only repeat her FBC everyday – her FBC did not get too low to call for a ‘stay’ at the hospital, Alhamdulillah, praises to Allah.

Atiqah was at PRIA until the 9th July. Fortunately, the 10th July 2006 is Atiqah's 10th birthday. Luckily I bought her a present already. Guessed what she got??? A personalised pencil case - I had her name written on the pencil case. She was grinning from ear to ear when I presented her with the pencil case. I am glad the saga is over now. Atiqah was back to school on the 12th July – the week when all her friends were sitting for the July monthly test. I am yet to get her marks!!! Arifah missed her first day of second year at the new UPM Medical Faculty. She is now almost settled at the new college – seldom comes home. Well, I know it is not easy to be in Med Fac!!! Study Smart, Kakak!!! May you be a doctor for the people, do not be greedy in acquiring material gains, never boast about your success , remember your origin!