Archive for the ‘A brother and a sister’ Category

With my family by my side

Lots of things have happened since my last post but Mum has not been in the right frame of mind to write since my Nenek (Grandma) became very ill. Nenek has recovered, Thank God but is still a bit weak. We will be celebrating her 83rd birthday this weekend. Yay, you know how I love birthdays. In fact we celebrated my sister’s 14th birthday two weeks ago. Mum and sis spent the day together doing “girlie stuff” which I think meant shopping and that meant I couldn’t follow. I thought I could at least suggest my favorite restaurants for the birthday dinner venue….. TGIF, Chili’s, Swiss Marche. Apparently sis did not appreciate the “help”. Well, she sure took like forever to decide (which annoyed me) and I was relieved when she finally choose Italian. I was afraid she might pick Japanese food which I have not acquired a taste for.

I was again trying be of help when I suggested birthday gifts for her. She was horrified at my suggestion of a frock. Frock? WHO uses that word?? she demands. Ok, ok dress then!! I said. That did not help much cos it was definitely not what she wanted. Mum explained that little sis has grown up and the stuff that she now prefers have also changed. There we go again, that word “change”. Of course I have noticed the changes. I noticed the toys she has given away, the cartoons we don’t watch together anymore and how upset she gets when I forget to knock before I enter her room. I still cannot understand this thing called ‘change’ but it’s always followed by Mum telling me that its okay, everything will be alright.

Last week we gathered for a family barbeque in Nenek’s newly renovated gazebo. It’s been a long time since we had one and boy did we make up for it. Mum made lamb sausages smothered with a Greek yoghurt sauce which I cannot pronounce the name of, yummy scalloped potatoes and a rich chocolate trifle to add to the spread of satay, chicken, shrimp, squid, pasta, garlic bread and even grilled pumpkins. Everything was perfect except we missed brother who was away at campus. Lunch lasted for almost 4 hours!. Surprisingly, come dinner time we still found space for my aunt’s coriander rice, prawn sambal and a nice Malaysian salad. What a fun, gastronomical day but the most wonderful thing everyone agreed, was the lovely sight of Nenek sitting, laughing and eating with us….like her old self.

P.S We were so busy eating, we forgot to take photos of the fantastic BBQ! I do however, have a pic of sis at her birthday dinner. Sis was beaming with pleasure when Mum congratulated her choice of a superb, adult restaurant.

Sis really enjoyed that dessert

What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family. – Mother Teresa

Wish I was in Singapore with sis

My younger sister went to Singapore for a school trip. I went to many school trips before but never as far as Singapore. I asked Mum if I could follow. She said “You wouldn’t want to be with a busload of giggly girls”. Most times I don’t know what I want so I take the cue from Mum. That’s the way I learn. But this time I don’t get it. What’s wrong about being on the bus with a bunch of girls? They are heading for Singapore right? That’s where you find the Zoo, Night Safari and Universal Studios. That’s all I care about.

Sis (leftmost) at the Merlion with friends

Sis said they were not going to those places. Instead they were going to places like Arab Street, Clarke’s Quay, Little India etc . .  and the National Library. Huh? The library? Why would anyone want to visit the library instead of a theme park? Mum reminds me that it’s a school trip not a holiday tour so the girls will visit 2 local schools to reciprocate the visits these schools made to sister’s school. The girls are even performing a local dance, the zapin, in conjunction with the trip. OK so now I don’t feel so bad about being left behind. Still, it would be nice to go. I haven’t been there since I was 10 years old. Mum doesn’t have good memories of that trip. She said I behaved badly. I got into tantrums each time we got ready to leave any of the attractions especially the Zoo. Sigh… Mum sure has a long memory. I said to her “Sorry”. Is 13 years too late to apologize?

Anyway, sister’s back later today. Can’t wait to see what souvenir she’ll bring back for me.

P.S She’s back. Sis got me a FINE tee-shirt. Fine for littering, fine for spitting, fine for chewing gum!. Get it?. I like it. I wore it immediately.

My FINE tee-shirt souvenir

So this is brother’s new, far away home…

We piled the car with snacks, drinks, clothes hangers, an electric jug and whatnot and we were on our way to see my brother at KYUEM. We met him at the Great Hall where he was busy directing a show for his seniors. I don’t understand but it must be important from the way he talks about it. He likes doing these kind of creative things. He tried to teach me to dance a couple of times but always ends up laughing more than anything else. I didn’t learn a thing. It doesn’t matter cos all I know is I’m happy when I dance my kind of dance. Never mind if everyone says I look like Mr. Bean. I like Mr. Bean. A lot.

Brother’s room was small but cozy. I helped make the bed with that new quilt Mum bought. I kept very quiet. Too many things are new to me and I need time to think on it. We didn’t stay long. Next weekend we can bring him home. On the way home Mum and Dad talks to my sister about her studying there too someday. I stiffen. Mum glances at me. Does she see the question pop up in my head? WHY does my brother and sister have to leave me?.

I miss Irsyad

There I said it!. Out of the blue. Mum looks at me with surprise. This is a rare moment since I do not show much emotion or express myself much. Mum says brother will be home for a short visit next weekend. Not to worry, he’s doing fine and he has a nice room all to himself. I do not understand. Where? I ask. In campus. She forgets to explain to me what “campus” means. She says we can go visit one day. I guess it’s easier to show me then to tell me. It’s always been that way.

So I prepare to go to bed, wishing goodnight to everyone in the house like I do every night without fail. Except that tonight and many more nights I will have one less person to say goodnight to. It feels uncomfortably…… incomplete.