Friday, 17 November 2006

Of being Brued and Jeffooied etc

Before I could sufficiently recover from being Rockybrued, I was Jeffooied (to borrow a phrase from Sharon Bakar) left, right and centre during the past few days causing an unprecedented surge in the graphs never seen before in my webstat. I have had a busy week but late one night, I sat before my pc mesmerised by the increasing number of people online. I can asssure you, the experience was not unlike watching the washing machine in action. It was... , er, mesmerising, as I stared at the number of guests online in MY blog, going from 24 to 36 to 44 and 55! I even checked to see whether I was in the right blog and not one belonging to Mak Andeh or BTB or someone equally famous. But no, it is Choc-a-Blog and my tired eyes were not playing tricks.

I then had the presence of mind to check webstat. On 14th November, there were about 1,300 visitors lurking in my archives, all being redirected from Jeff Ooi.com. To what do I owe this honour? I clicked on all his links and finally found one that says, Lat’s story – and that was where the visitors were coming from. The next morning, before I could even wash my face, there were already 60 visitors and the figure went well over 2,000 by the end of the day. Phew! talk about the 15 minute of fame...I had two whole days and I just couldn’t cope with it. I am now quite relieved to see the normal five or at the most seven, (half of which must be my siblings) pottering around in my archives.

So, what have I been up to these past few days? Quite a lot I must say. I sacrificed my Eastenders omnibus edition and X-Factor to join thousands of people at Westminster for Remembrance Sunday. It was a very emotional affair, especially watching old war veterans in their wheelchairs, with their walking sticks, marching past the cenotaph with its millions of red poppy flowers making a stark contrast to the dull and grey autumn morning. Then there were the war widows, walking proudly in memory of their husbands who never returned. I saw one old war veteran, with medals on his beret, flashing an old sepia photograph from his wartime days to anyone who cared to look, and telling wartime stories to anyone who cared to listen.

The last time I attended Remembrance Sunday was in 1995 at the Royal Albert Hall when it was the 50th anniversary of the Second World War. I attended the ceremony then for the same reason I attended the ceremony this year. Each year, a Malay ex British army veteran joins in the march. In 1995, Pak Mat Abu, now 66, was given the honour to carry the Malaysian flag as the British government honoured the Commonwealth countries for their contribution during the Second World War.

Lest we forget



Last Sunday, I caught up with Pak Mat Abu again after the parade and spotted him wearing his newly acquired medal – the Pingat Jasa Malaysia, given to those, especially in the British army and the police force, who served during the emergency.

Pak Mat was 15 when he signed up with the British Royal Artillery and served in several units in Singapore before they closed down the base. He didn’t see any action but was involved in digging trenches during the emergency.

Although he came to London in 1971 with the intention of joining up again, he resigned from the British army and went on to work with London Transport, first as a guard and later as a tube driver on the Bakerloo Line. He later drove the number 52 bus. I have known Pak Mat for a long time and he has been a source of information in my search for stories about the old Malay sailors.(here, here and here)

A few days ago, I attended another ceremony at the Guildhall in east London– a ceremony steeped in tradition dating from 1237. I was there again to witness another friend being given the Freedom of the City of London. What an honour and it came just a day before his birthday too! The first Malaysian to be given the Honorary Freedom of the City was our first Prime Minister, Almarhum Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra AlHaj in 1968. The second who was nominated and made Freeman of the city was the present sultan of Selangor. And now the third is someone who had done a lot to contribute to the fashion industry, making women feel beautiful in his creation, inspiring not only films, books but also songs, not to mention others who want to be in his choos, er shoes, following his footsteps. I have been to almost all ceremonies where he was given awards and recognitions, like the OBE, the honorary doctorate at a university and it never failed to make my eyes water. Such a beautiful, kind and humble person and I feel truly honoured to be his friend and to be able to share most of his important moments with him and his family.

Just a little something abt the Freedom of the City. In the olden days, recipients of this title were allowed to drive their flock of sheep across the London Bridge and they could go on a drinking spree and behave in a disorderly manner without fear of being arrested.

I have just come back from a meeting with blogger arena and what a wonderful meeting it was. Like the war veterans, I suddenly feel old.

So, yes, it has been an exhausting week, but I think I still have enough energy for Dirty Dancing this weekend!

41 comments:

AuntyN said...

Kak Teh, it will never surprise me if you have 100 online or more at your blog. Your stories are always a good read.

Tak nak tulis memoir ka?

p/s Kak Teh, nak autograph boleh? hehehe

Mama Rock said...

kaka teh, soon they will haev blog hall of fame and I'm sure you'll be there as well - and i will be one proud mama to be associated with you! :)

Honeytar said...

Being JeffOoied or Brewed, you are equally famous. & kita2 ni tumpang glamour kak Teh. Kekekekekeee.... :)

pembacha said...

Kak Teh, sekarang Pingat Jasa Malaysia sudah boleh pakai kah di sana? isu sudah selesai?

Selamat (Belated) Hari Raya!

shiha said...

Kak Teh, do visit my humble blog. Baru jer nak berjinak-jinak.. tq!

ummuhassan said...

kak teh,

i thought i was the only one who is new here. True, I was reading jeff ooi's and redirected to your blog. Yesterday i spend half of my working day reading the archives. it was so interesting and sometimes moved me to tears. i already put you into my favourite

love
ummuhassan

ubisetela said...

Kak Teh,
I'm proud that I've been "KakTehed" before :D

~ahni~ said...

Pingat untuk Kak Teh jugak tau!

bibliobibuli said...

yes, being jeffoied is a strange strange feeling. 2,000 hits? i can only imagine it. i was freaking out at 770.

enjoyed your account of remeberance sunday

Manal said...

No. 52 bus!!!!!

Those were the days when it carried me from Ladbroke Grove to Royal Albert Hall stop, and sometimes all the way to Victoria to catch those national express coaches there. And here in msia, the only bus i've ever ridden so far was our university bus where i was acting as an accompanied lecturer for a student competition down in KLConv Ctr.

Was that the lord mayor's show, the one u had to go to guildhall?

Why la u had to bring tears to me poor eyes whenever u had had to mention all those familiar stuff....

Kak Teh said...

auntyn, nak tulih memoir?? haha attention span tadaaak!

mama rock, we can hold hands and we can walk through the hall together.

honeytar, tumpang jangan tak tumpang. Thank you for honeytarring me re: bauhulu!

Kak Teh said...

pembacha, kak teh rasa kalau british citizen memang tak boleh pakai. tapi pak mat masih rakyat malaysia.

shiha, kak teh dah pi dah. Tahniah dah berblog!

ummuhassan, thanks for the lovely words. Hahah, now i feel so exposed! but itulahcatatan hidup kak teh.

Kak Teh said...

ubi, no problem, I'll kak teh you whenever you want! Just say the word.

ahni, tolong cari pingat yang sesuai untuk kak teh sat..Pingat blur negara ke...


sharon, ya, you can say that again..it is like, did something hot me?. what a strange experience to be jeffooied.

manal - laaaa, datang laa sini bercuti. The ceremonyi mentioned is one where Dt Jimmy Choo was given the Freedom of the City.

wonda said...

Kak Teh,
Knew you were busy but thank you for visiting my blog. I am "teh tarik(ed)" by your blog. I started to read all the backdated entries and managed to finish reading Dec.04's entries yesterday. I like the one you wrote about "What's in a nickname". It's a wonder you didn't get confused at all the nicknames. I did! :)

nyonyapenang said...

a visit from Kak Teh is enough to give a newbie like me a BIG boost; what more a link at Sentraal Station. Thanks alot, Kak Teh. ;)

Kak Elle said...

wah you've been so busy huh?I remember as a kid during these occassion we pin poppy flower onto our blouses.U kneal kak Dahlia and abg Omar?

MULAN said...

thnx kak teh... linked me to SS... such a great honour.. i'll be the flower old girl.. whn u walk thru the hall, hand in hand wth mama rock..

Anonymous said...

Kak Teh, you are too humble. You underestimate your popularity. I feel honoured to be 'KakTehed' and thank you for the giving us many hours of pleasurable reading. Have a great time at 'Dirty Dancing'.

mama irma said...

Kak Teh,
You are indeed our Makciks' version of Rockybru!! There are a lot to learn from your vast experiences.....and you seem to always find the time to visit us, mere mortals in the blog world.

Azer Mantessa said...

kak teh,

one thing for sure, your writing is high quality :-)

Anonymous said...

WAaaaahh... you did so much!~! Good for you!

Well, personally i'm not surprised that your blog is more popular than you think. It's insightful, down-to-earth and gives people food for thought!

Blog on! :D

Kak Teh said...

wonda, you have time for all that? I thought you were not well? but then if my old entries kept you company during your recuperation - that is good! I am enjoying yr trail of the missing kidney stones.

haiyaaa nyonyaa...dont be laidetttt la! Visiting you is like visiting my old haunts in Penang. Penang will always remain a special place in my heart.

kak elle, yes, yes, - memang kenal!
dulu surau mate.

Kak Teh said...

mulan, one of these days, when my visit back to malaysia is not too hectic, i would like to visit Vietnam. I hear that it is beautiful.
Judy ve Thru...You should go and watch Dirty dancing - I tell you th etheatre was packed with women our age..hehehe and you can imagine how rowdy that was! Really enjoyed, and the singing and dancing carried on out in the streets and into the subways.

mama irma, hahaha, i wouldnt go so far as being the mak cik version of rockybru..I will settle for teh tarik! hehe.

azer, you are too kind..if only I have a bit of your creativity with words.

vern, your blog is a breath of fresh air for someone like me. and I am glad I found you.

Nazrah said...

amboi amboi...

takkan tak tau kak teh kan the queen mother of bloggers...mesti la ramai anak2 datang baca!

cepat! sapa blom dapat duit raya dari kakteh, beratur!! kendian sila beratur kat blog MA, dia bagi RM100!! tak payah pegi BTB, nanti dia suruh kita jadik kuli...


anyway, i am happy for you kakteh! keep writing keepsakes such as this!

wonda said...

Kak Teh,
Sick or not, I am the type who cannot sit still. So that was why I made a little escape from the hospital twenty years ago. Yesterday I was overcome by the irresistable urge to start reading your posts from the beginning and it took my mind off my kidney pain. Thanks and keep on writing, Kak Teh!

Ely said...

KT kan memang everlasting fofular! i wont be surprised if u get up to 300 readers online!

Has said...

:-); nice feeling eh to see the meter rising, he he he, I ni tumpang baca. Sekarang dah tak ada mood nak tulis blog, in fact that is good for me coz I have to focus to writing something else, nanti kalau publish i hantark satu free copy. Yang fasal kawin2 tu dah sold out kat KB.

Mak Andeh said...

Woahhh...I can understand the adrenalin rush bila tengok site meter naik dan naik.... macam KLSE bull run of early 90s !

Kak Teh said...

nazrah, thanks for dropping by.

wonda, i can tell , u cannot keep still. but rest u need!

ely, its not long now, kan? all the best to you and keep us in the loop.

has, i will remember that promise and will queueu up in rain or shine to get an autographed copy.

MA, well - now thatthe numbers have dwindled - rasa macam shares dah jatuh hehe...my graphs look quite pathetic!

simah said...

kak teh.. ur blog is always worth to visit.. i think many would agree wth me..

saya pun memang syok baca blog kak teh..n u r one sweet lady :0)

Abang Malaya said...

Wahai adik Teh orang budiman
Bertanya abang siapa gerangan
Bukan malu bukan segan
Teka meneka jadi hiburan

Abang Malaya kawan lama mu
Di NSTP kita bertemu
Waktu itu adikku muda ayu
Kini pun masih begitu

Abang ini sudahlah bersara
Duduk merayau tak ada kerja
Bila sunyi jadilah blogger
Berpantun dengan adik nan jauh di mata

Sampai sini bicara kita
Esok lusa berjumpa pula
Abang merindu setiap masa
Kepada suami salam ku jua

Has said...

Kak Teh, Abang Malaya tu mengancam jiwa betul ye, he he he.

~ GAB ~ said...

I am one of them online looking for some good read and what I found in this Choc-a-Blog blog has never failed me. Love it!!!

put said...

hi kak teh,
just dropping by to say that i am one of those who have been reading your blog (silently) and loving it! :-)

Abang Malaya said...

Wahai Adik Teh nan jauh di mata
Lamalah sudah kita tak berjumpa
Abang Malaya di Malayalah juga
Tidak mampu lagi ke tempat mu berada.

Maklumlah abang tidak lagi bekerja
Wang sedikit yang ada perlu dijaga
Tambang ke England beribu harganya
Tak mampulah abang hendak berbelanja.

Nasib bailkah ada alam siber
Bolehlah kita bergurindam seloka
Menghibur hati mengubat lara
Teka meneka siapa saya Abang Malaya.

Abang sekadar ingin bertanya
Kebun sayur di belakang rumahmu itu masihkah ada?
Abang ini asalnya orang desa
Bercucuk taman gemar senantiasa.

HAS kata Abang Malaya mengancam jiwa Aduhai, tak kan sampai begitu jadinya?
Abang Malaya sekadar bergurau senda
Mengukir kata khazanah bangsa.

Terima kasih wahai adinda semua
Gurindam seloka budaya bangsa
Syair dan madah permata pujangga
Kita yang kerdil menumpang ria.

Abang Malaya mohon berhenti
Di lain hari berjumpa lagi
Salam kepada anak dan suami
Hidup nan bahagia itulah dicari.

Kak Teh said...

simah, you are too, too kind.

has, kak teh masih dok pikiark yang mana satulah jejaka Jalan Riong nihhh! ha..nanti kak teh jawab.

gab, gab, gab..you have some wonderful stories too and you have your own way and style that is so captivating.

put, I am touched and thank you.


wahai Abang malaya yang bijaksana
nanti kak teh jawab di atas sana,
nak tau juga abang jejaka yang mana,
Buat kerja pun serba tak kena.

edelweiss said...

Kak Teh,

I love all your postings. Hidup kak teh !! :) Keep it up.

P/s : abang malaya...hebat nya pantun ;P

edelweiss said...

Pantun seloka gurindam bicara
Cepatlah kak teh, balaslah semula
Tak sabar rasanya nak cungkil cerita
Siapa gerangan Abang Malaya

Kak Teh said...

edelweis, thanks !

siapakah gerangan abang malaya,
kak teh juga tertanya-tanya,
sudah sempit kini jadi dunia,
di alam siber kita berseloka!

Anonymous said...

Hi Kak Teh,
I am hoping that you actually get a notice on comment postings, as after reading your blog, and might I say, a thoroughly enjoyable and one which I can relate too (and love those chocs!).

I started blogging of late with one purpose. To educate all readers and bloggers of the discrimintory policies that MAS enforces. Yes, our National Carrier practices Gender discrimination! and proudly too might I add. You see, they terminate their pregnant stewardesses who are expecting their third child (though Malaysian COnstitution practices the right to live, and its labour laws guarantees a mximum of 5 surviving children, MAS seems to have the right to give the shorter end of the stick to the female crew)
I would like to apologise for using your blog, but I am writing to most decent bloggers to include a mention of my site, www.muststopthis.blogspot.com, to highlight this severe injustice.
(This blog also has links as well as newspaper articles on similiar cases and is factual)
You see, my wife and I were dragged in to life's quagmire due to this highly discriminating policy. My intention is to tell one and all of MAS's lop sided HR policy, and to influence, if possible civic minded people to stop spending thier money with MAS.
Our case will be mentioned in Industrial court in February and till then, I hope more will leasrn about this kinda case.

Thank you , Tony Yew

Kak Teh said...

muststopthis, my sympathies and good luck with the court case.