THE MESSAGE NO.56 JULY 2006
THE FOO YOOK YOON SERIES
THE NASAHARI ADHIKARI EDITION
TRAVEL ENCOUNTER PART II
At Newark airport, I was supposed to collect my luggage before checking in for my
connecting domestic flight to Manchester. I waited till the last luggage dropped on the
conveying belt and still couldn't see mine. Where was it???? Asked I of an attendant
standing near by: 'is there any more luggage coming??' She said: 'No, that's all.
What is your last name?' I said: 'Chan'. Without even checking on any list or whatever,
she answered me immediately: 'Ohh... we are sorry that your luggage couldn't make it from
Hahahahaha, I laughed. She said I could make my claim at the last destination and that my
luggage will arrive at the same time by the same flight, the next day.
I made my report at the last destination, Manchester and sure enough they have all the
information that my luggage was still in Singapore. So, I am without my luggage for 2 days.
Now, how did she know that my luggage is not there???
Come to think of it, isn't communication very advance nowadays ???? They have all the
details and knew before that my luggage was not loaded on the same flight that I took...???
Thanks to the new technology. That attendant already knew my name and that my luggage was
still in Singapore....!!! Wow.... how and what do you think about this???
YES, indeed my luggage was sent to me the next day by an airport attendant. Everything was
still in place and no sign that my luggage been ransacked and nothing were lost. Thanks.
CONGRATULATIONS FOR YOUR LOSS,
Kumarasamy has emailed me to congratulate me for my loss. Mahalingam has written to me to
praise my great loss. "Well done for your loss," said Harbans Singh.
Ain't I crossed with people congratulating my losses?
Normally people would send their condolences and sympathies for somebody's losses. Why is
that they do the opposite for my losses! Yes, you got it, the only losses that we hurray
and celebrate about are the dipping of the weighing scale and a tightening of the belt.
I have done these. That is why they congratulated me. I hope I will not undo what I have
Then one day I was gulping down a bowl of mutton soup and a plate of rice when suddenly
someone tapped me on the shoulder to spring me a surprise. Who was the guy? He was Bahari
Shafie. He bumped into me when I was gorging in a meal.
"Hey, Tuan Haji join me," I invited him to dine with me gleefully.
"I'm on diet. No thank you. It's on water now that I survive." He replied.
"What? I thought we often say that when we're in love, then on water alone we could survive.
Hei, what are you up to buddy? Roaming around without been accompanied?"
"Oh, I am in love with my body. I'm now taking a slimming course." A sinseh (his physician
or master a Chinese guy) is teaching him tai qi and feeding him with herbs. Though his
stomach was empty he did not feel hungry. On the contrary, Bahari looked robust and full of
"Congratulation for losing your barrel shaped tummy." I said for I noticed his middle is
much reduced now. He told me of his 8-day stringent food abstinent course. He lived on
water only. That is a great way of saving money - living on sky juice alone, it's free.
But, his medication expenditure (for herbs) cost him a small fortune. Tell us your result
Bahari after your great slimming course! Many of us would like to know and might follow.
LEE YEW KWONG
TAI CHI CHUAN
One day I called up Lee Yew Kwong. I said, "let's go for tea". Yew Kwong always obliges
when invited. So I drove down to Ketari. At the Mamak restaurant we had tea.
Yew Kwong is still robust and active. I wanted to ask him for his secret of living
healthily. Before I could pop the question he was talking about tai chi already. Just the
night before, he had attended a gathering of the master and his followers of tai chi chuan.
I asked, "Is tai chi chuan a form of exercise or an art of self-defence?"
"Oh, it is both. You could practice it as an exercise. You could go further to develop it
in yourself as an art of self-defence."
"How is that so?" I asked.
And Yew Kwong explained further. He said he had seen his master flooring someone who wanted
to attack him (the master). With just a flick of his hand, the assailant was thrown off
balance. He landed on the floor several feet away. The movement of the master's hand was so
fast that many people around never noticed it at all!
"But normally we see that people practicing tai chi do very slow movements."
I wanted to stress the contrast.
Yew Kwong went on, "they are doing it as an exercise. In fact, even to develop the skill of
self-defence starts as an exercise. The exercise makes the body parts subtle and agile.
When you are attacked and have to defend yourself then you could act fast. The subtlety and
agility so developed by the slow movements during exercise help you to strike fast, like a
cobra striking its prey. The strike by the tai chi practitioner could be as fatal and
"Oh there's so much to learn in tai chi, eh!" exclaimed I.
"Indeed it's a branch of knowledge. There's so much to learn from it." Yew Kwong said.
The blah, blah, blah went on. The only thing that I managed to save in my grey matter is
this: All the movements of tai chi are circular. And, tai chi makes use of the assailant's
strength. Yew Kwong, thanks.
Any Mesians out there wants to interject and elaborate? Welcome to call or write to me.
Tai chi anybody?
GOINGS-ON IN BENTONG
The latest developments here are so many. At the site where the old sawmill was in Tras
Road beside the Chinese school there has sprung up a row of twenty shop houses now.
Further up to the 1st mile when once the town's perimeter fence ended, the town boundary
has extended up to the air strip. Even the air strip has been stripped off its status and a
new educational institution perched by the hill slopes now. All along the way, there have
appeared some light industries and little commercial enterprises.
On the land where many of the government quarters used to stand, opposite the Tras Road
padang and diagonally across the road from the hospital, is the town's new grand mosque now.
BUILDINGS AND MORE BUILDINGS
Chui Yin Street that used to end with the shop that made and sold coffins, is longer now.
A row of twenty shops has been put up to dwarf the dreaded gloomy casket godown.
Two buildings have sprung up in town. Opposite the post office is a brand new yellow
building now. It has yet to be opened for occupation. purpose? Still nobody knows. The
second modern building that could be considered as tall is the new one opposite ESSO.
It is a storeyed car park.
Yes, the problem of parking in Bentong is very acute now. You could hardly find an empty
parking lot around the market area or along the three busy streets. And the authorities are
very efficient and generous in handing you a ticket. Thinking of visiting Bentong, beware!
Ah Peng Street and Loke Yew Street are so busy with passing-by-long-distant speeding
traffic that you could hardly cross the streets. Parking here is impossible during mass
human activity peaks.
But there are some places where you could park your cars. Drive in by the town's Chinese
temple and go behind the post office. You could find some parking lots empty there. Then
drive in beside the district office, past the TNB and there are ample parking lots there.
A little walk could carry you to where and what you want to do in town.
Even our mentor is now using public transport to get into town. Buses run at half an hour
intervals now. To get back to his house, he is often offered lifts by friends, acquaintances
and former students. Occasionally, he does patronize the taxi man. He had sold his vintage
jalopy (a BMW - the 5 series) and adopted the philosophy of an Oriental sage which says,
"when your horse drops dead,
then go on foot instead"
And he experiences no inconvenience at all! This is realistic and practical living
philosophy: Adaptability is the key to living happily.
THE WONDERS OF MODERN COMMUNICATION
Sunday, at our mentor's marble kitchen table. We have just finished picking through the
MESSAGE to spot my mistakes. One article jolted my grey matter and I said, "this travel
article was from my daughter. She sent it by e-mail earlier. It's such an efficient way of
sending mail by e-mail now."
"I wonder how it is done?" interjected our master.
"I'm puzzled too. Even the facsimile facility used lately was a mystery to me. How could
rolling a printed sheet through the fax machine be able to send the exact copy to a far
away company and even to an on-other-side-of-the-globe country!"
Our mentor reminisced of the telecommunication facilities of yore. The telephoning system
in the 1950's we recalled. Back then, to get connected, we had to lift up the phone which
was immediately received by the town's telephone operator. We requested him or her to
connect us to a number. When the receiving end replied, then we started the breathtaking
blah, blah, blah..........
And going back to the US, Mr. Miles remembered, in his early days, the caller had to crank
the phone while talking. Else, the line would go dead. He could also listen to neighbours'
calls because most of the lines are connected. What a glorious eavesdropping era it was!
Then his cellular phone rang. He yakked with someone at the other end.
The blah, blah, blah came to an end.
"That's the most amazing gadget of our century," said I.
"It certainly is a modern unexplainable gadget, I too wonder how it works, with no wire
attached," he said with a smile.
"I too am dazed. Yet it is such a common thing now - the hand set." I said.
Back at home, I probed the mystery of the working of the hand phone in the Internet.
It has something to do with satellites.
I remember the first ever satellite to be sent up orbiting in space round the earth was
the "sputnik" by the Russians. Later, it was followed by those sent up by Americans.
The whole space hooha was actually a race between the two great powers back in those days.
The satellite race has now turned into a spin-off for the benefits of telecommunications.
Thanks to the race for conquering space by the Americans and the Russians! Otherwise,
we would not have the convenience of the little gadget called the cellular phone!!
Delving into telecommunications, one day I was driving by the area leading to St.John
Institution in Kuala Lumpur. I spotted a sort of museum there. It is the Telekom museum.
Has any Mesian being inside there? I am sure there are a lot to learn about the history of
the telephone industry particularly the development of telecommunications in our country.
Dare someone venture in there and give us a good story! Or has anybody actually gone in
there before? Send us your story to satisfy our curiosity, please!
FELICITATIONS TO SARJEET AND BALBIR KAUR
Congratulations to Sarjeet Singh and Balbir Kaur who married off their daughter Harjit Kaur
on the 3rd of June. To mark the occasion they held two functions.
On Friday night, the second of June, they held a dinner and dance at the new Khai Mun
School Hall in Repas Village. Hundreds of friends, relatives from near and far congregated
to have a night of feasting and music.
It was a very high decibel affair indeed with Punjabi chanting melodies and disco music
accompanied by the proper colourful light effects. A dance troupe sauntered around the
tables to entertain the well-wishers.
MANY ARE NOW CLEAN SHAVEN
Yours truly dragged his missus in for a good tucking in. Before I entered the hall,
I was hoping to see a sea of turbans. But not at all, for many Sikhs have now turned modern.
They have de-turbaned. They are clean shaven.
THE YOUNG LADIES ARE BEAUTIES
The kaurs came in their best fashion acclaimed Punjabi suits complete with shawls. The
young ladies are beauties with their Aryan physique. The ladies? Some of them are slim.
Most of them looked well-fed with fleshy arms and wealthy bellies.
They were even some sumo wrestlers trundling around.
WE KNOW WHAT SHE SEEKS
Facing me, sat a non-Sikh lady with her Sikh hubby. There arose in my mind about a joke
that people used to poke. They say if a woman mix-marries a Sikh, you know what she seeks!
But the man has no giant physique. He was of mediocre built. I doubt she finds what she
seeks! The law of proportion determines proportional size right? But you never know,
like people say "do not judge a book by its covers".
In this case the equivalent saying is: Do not judge the...... from the outside! Hahahaha.
Talking about the matter of size (oh! Now you strike the puzzle) the question of height
struck my mind. Sarjeet and Balbir's two sons towered over everybody in the congregation
THE TWO SIX FOOTERS
One son just hit the top of the door. That was what I saw. The other son had to stoop low
to go in and out. Well, one has made full use of his loftiness for the benefit of the
country. He is a player of the national basketball team. Standing at more than 6 feet tall,
he could just use his hand to tap in the ball.
HE WAS AT THE SIKH TEMPLE
Our mentor went to the actual wedding ceremony at the Bentong Sikh temple on Saturday 3rd
June. The crowd was so huge that he could not squeeze himself in. Or was it that the temple
was too small that it could not pack in all? "That was a blessing," thought our mentor.
Otherwise, he would get earful after earful of
indecipherable chants from the ceremony that dragged on for two long hours.
But no! He was not spared his ears. He was cornered by one Braggart Singh
(not his real name). A Singh struck up a conversation with him and then he monopolized
the whole thing.
Braggart bragged and bragged of his achievement and capabilities.
One thing he proudly talked about was his language abilities. He knows seven languages!
He speaks something like Punjabi, Bengali, Pakistani, Bangldeshi, Hindi, Malay,
and English. What an Indian polished polyglot he is! "From the contents of his speech we
could easily add in an eighth dimension: Rubbish," commented a listener. You know what his
profession is? He is a lawyer. No wonder he could talk and talk non-stop as if he was
rehearsing for a case in court.
Our mentor only escaped from the incomprehensible brag of the new acquaintance by going to
a reception lunch, again served at the Repas Khai Mun School hall at 1 o'clock. By that
time everybody was hungry. The weather was sultry. The food was sumptuous and tasty.
It was rice, veggies and very fiery chicken curry. Yum, Yum, Yum, Yummy!
MISS HARJIT KAUR RAJASAANSI
MR HARBAJAN SINGH RANDHAWA
MAY ALL YOUR MARRIAGE VOWS BE BRIMFULLY CARRIED OUT?
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE FOLLOWING IN JULY
||ABU BAKAR MOHD ISA
||HOOI YEW CHEE
||LEONG SIEW LING
||YAP KIM LOY
||GOH SENG KWANG
||NIAM HOCK SEK
||CHUNG KOON SUNG
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