Friday, 23 March 2007

Al Fatehah to Atok

Yesterday, I was there in his birth place. Yesterday, many times, my thoughts turned to him. Yesterday, as I surveyed the beautiful bay, the coastline and what I managed to see of Johore, I thought of him. I thought of his longing to be in his own home. Like my Mak in her twilight years, he too must have wanted to go home and spend his final days there. But his children like Mak’s children had defied his wishes, as they wanted to care for him like he had cared for them when he was strong and dependable.

I have never met him. I have never spoken to him. But I knew him through the writings of a devoted and loving daughter. As bloggers we exchanged notes on the challenges of looking after an ailing and ageing parent. We talked about their unconditional love, about their boundless energy and commitment for their children and compared these to our miserable attempts to look after them. We talked about the sulk, the tantrums and the helplessness they must be feeling. So, yes, I knew Atok; the man so devoted to his wife that he planted olive trees as an expression of love to his wife of the same name. The man who, like my father, smoked the pipe with curve cut tobacco cap nenas, sending whiffs of its sweet smelling aroma in the air while telling stories of the Japanese occupation. Yes, I recognize someone I love in Atok.

Each time I read accounts of Atok, I couldn't help but feel a tinge of envy as I had lost my father more than thirty years ago. Pak suffered after an accident while he was young, so, I missed out going to the movies with him, going for walks with him, but like Atok, he patiently waited for us while we watched our favourite TV programmes until the we fell asleep and the test patterns came on screen. Yes, I knew Atok.

When news of Atok being rushed to the hospital, as bloggers we gave whatever support we could to his daughter, Mak Andeh, who kept us informed about his condition. We, as blogger friends of his daughter, sent him our doas.


I was looking out to Danga Bay yesterday when I received the sms bringing news of his demise. Al Fatehah to Atok. He is now in a better place. Semoga Allah mencucuri rahmat ke atas rohnya dan menempatkannya bersama orang-orang yang beriman. Amin.

Oh yes, I was there, Atok, and I understand why you loved the place so much.

28 comments:

nyonyapenang said...

my condolences. may he rest in peace.

Kak Ainon, Kg Raja said...

Asmk Kak Teh.
Innalillahi wa inna ilaihi roji'un.
Takziah to Makandeh & family. Just had a quick ziarah to Ma&Brood (thanks for highlighting). Will definitely go through her lovely and touching postings later.

Wassalam.

Mama Rock said...

this is a beautiful entry for MA

tokasid said...

Salam to kak teh and mak andeh.

Innalillahi wa inna ilaihi roji'un.
Di harap Mak andeh dan keluarga tabah dan bersabar menghadapi pemergian Atok.

semoga roh Atok di limpahi Rahmat ALLAH Azza Wa jalla.Ameen.

X-Matters said...

Kak Teh
I'm new to Mak Andeh's. I was blog surfing and chanced upon it one day.
How do we react to news like these?
Over the past few weeks, I've received several. In fact, two of my ex-colleagues passed away within 10 days of each other.
It's God's way of testing us.
Saya harap keluarga allahyarham banyak2 bersabar.
Al-Fatihah

raden galoh said...

Assalamualaikum Kak Teh...salam takziah dan alfatihah utk arwah. Semoga rohnya di tempatkan di kalangan yg beriman. Amin.

mak andeh said...

Kak Teh :

I am speechless to the point of tears.

Such a beautiful tribute to my Dad. I am getting in terms to address him as Arwah - and refer him in the past tense.

He will always be present in my heart.

Always.

Thank you Kak Teh.

Thank you all.

Syed Imran said...

Salam takziah. Semoga roh allahyarham dicucuri rahmat dan ditempatkan di kalangan para solihin.
Saya masih ingat celoteh laksa Kedah sekitar 1970an semasa bertugas di Light Street, P Pinang.
Salam hormat untuk suami tercinta.

Hi&Lo said...

My deepest and heartfelt condolences to Mak Andeh on her loss.

Just read her blog. The way she loved her Bapak is truly devoted.

We cannot stop the tide. We can only live to appreciate and love.

Thank you, Mak Andeh.

NJ said...

Salam kak Teh, a very beautiful tribute indeed to MA's dad. Thanks for informing us on Atok’s passing.

To MA and family, my condolence.

maklang said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ms. Blabs said...

Thanks for informing, KT. I don't get to visit other ppl's blogs that regularly, but yours is always one of the few on my list of "must-checks" so that I know what's happening around blogosphere.

ruby ahmad said...

Hi Kak Teh,

My condolences to Mak Andeh and family. Al-Fatihah.

Thanks for informing us Kak Teh. What a beautiful and touching tribute. You have a way of capturing the essence of the situation. I have gone through such a loss. What I can say is, I was not prepared and for any loss we will never be prepared. I would suggest anyone who is going through any loss to not to feel guilty to grieve. It is only natural and insy time will heal.

I said heal, but we of course will never forget. Memories will surface every so often, both sweet and sad.

My prayers for you Mak Andeh and family.

anggerik merah said...

AlFatihah. Condolences to Mak Andeh and family.

maklang said...

My condolences to MA and family

May Atok rest in peace...

mak andeh said...

Happy Birthday, Kak Teh !

Nazrah said...

Tumpang lalu sat, KT..

MA sayang, your stoicism in the midst of tragedy is exemplary. Dealing with the loss of one parent is hard enough, I bet it is harder when the surviving one is gone too. My prayers and thoughts go out to your grieving family.

demonsinme said...

Madam KT:

My condolences and fatihah.

I hope this gift will cheer you up.

Bag, Sack, Rack

hey there traveller vexed,
relax,
it's the only thing you can pack,
when trudgung in a world mastered by a man made of wax,
now sit is what you have to do next,
free your bag and put it in my sack,
give it to me so I can put it on my rack.

vexed traveller,
eat as I know you are haunted by hunger,
as I know every traveller is also a hunter,
looking for the mystical beast no mind can figure,
to give you strength traveling in the path of meander,
that the hunger would set you lost in anger,
and ends you as a meal cook on a sweet fire.

I know, I know it's a heavy bag,
I know, I know the content is no hag,
but you really should put it in my sack,
and you really should put it on my rack,
it would really make you relax,
and free you from the contunious vex,
I should know for I am the paver of every traveller's track.

zewt said...

hey there, just wanna express a word of thank you for your well wishes. appreciate it all.

bergen said...

You mean Atok the architect?

Anonymous said...

kak teh,
was your interview with dr ooi togethe with rocky, nuraina, jeff ooi and the utusan journalist, an exclusive interview? jeff ooi in his blog says so. is it because for jeff ooi, that interview was like his first time interviewing someone. was jeff ooi behaving like a rookie journalist?
thanks kak teh.
ingin tahu.

wonda said...

A touching tribute. My condolences to Mak Andeh and her family on their loss.

simah said...

Al fatihah

FireHorse said...

I'll hop over now to over my condolences

Kak Teh said...

To everyone, thank you so much for your doa and prayers for Atok and messages of condolence to MA.

MA, be strong.

X matters - yes, i read about the passing of our friends. Al Fatehah to them too.

Syed Imran, thank you for visiting. Your memory is very good!

bergen, it is not atok the architect.

anonymous,
yes, the interview with the author of The Reluctant Politician was exclusive for bloggers present. we had a breakfast meeting with him as soon as we arrived at the hotel, before proceeding to the venue where the launch was held. I will be writing about it soon.

once again - thank you.

Hi&Lo said...

Kak Teh,

Notice you had slowed down in blogging which is good cos if you overstretched yourself, it defeats the purpose of a "holiday".

Am not wrong to say a lot of people love you.y

DJINSAKTI said...

Kaktehh...Saya hidup balik..saya hidup balik...yeeehaaa....

Adiejin

U.Lee said...

Hello Kak Teh,
You were in Johore? I too love Johore. Used to stay at Bukit Serene.
Bet you're having fun catching up with old kawans, huh? And all the delicious Malaysian foods.
Have a great time, Kak Teh.
UL.