Saturday, 5 September 2009

One night in Ramadhan

It was nearly 2 am by the time we left Tuk Din's . Outside the air was cool and refreshing and if not for the distance, it would have been nice to walk home. We went to have late night coffee at Tuk Din's which dragged on to Terawikh and if not for work, we'd have stayed for sahur.

Since the opening of Tuk Din's at 41 Craven Road, Paddington, we had been there twice to break our fast and then proceeded to Terawikh at Malaysia Hall, but most of the time, we'd prefer to break fast at home and then have a short rest, watching the very knowledgeable Dr Zakir Naik on Islam Channel.

But that night after iftar, while waiting for the mee bandung to settle, I suddenly missed the company of Tuk Din and his wife Midah. Since the opening of their new restaurant, they have been sorely missed in the surau and it hasn't been the same. We are happy that their restaurant is doing very well, especially during iftar. People come from near and far and the clients are not just Malaysians but locals too. Our children needed no persuasion or blackmail to go to Tuk Din's and we piled into Nona's new old Honda Civic and off we went.

Tuk Din's reputation for his culinary skills; his koayteow goreng, mee goreng mamak, nasi lemak, just to mention a few, is legendary. People just keep coming back for more.

Those of you who frequented Malaysia Hall canteen before the move to the present site now, would remember Tuk Din's famous dishes and hospitality. And now, he has his own restaurant. The food is just as good if not better, the only difference now is that it is no longer government subsidised!

That night, when the last customer had paid his bills and the 'closed' sign was put in place, we sat around talking about old times; about the good old times at the old Malaysia Hall canteen in Bryanston Square. That was where the children spent time working to earn some pocket money and more importantly to mix around with other Malaysian children. They helped to clear tables and served behind the counter. I too helped out while waiting for the children to finish their work. It was fun. The children met a lot of Malaysian friends and got involved with activities organised by the MSD. I too met a lot of interesting people with interesting stories to tell.

We made friends from near and far. Many friends became more like family. Among them are blogger Melayu di London and husband who left us briefly to go back to Singapore. And now they are back! That night, they too walked in with their children to join us for late night coffee. And we had an impromtu birthday celebration for their youngest. It was just like the good old days.

So that was where we had our terawikh that night, at Tuk Din's led by my husband. It was like having one big family in the congregation and it was nice. The little boys who used to run around in the canteen, are now grown ups praying with us that night in Ramadhan.

So at almost 2 am, we drove back from Paddington on the A40, the full moon shining down on us as we listened to Mesut Kurtis' Qasidah Burdah. It is one of my favourites. Listening and singing along its beautiful words and melody with the children, reminded me of those days driving along listening to Raihan's beautiful nasyeeds. We couldn't get enough of Raihan's nasyeed. They are so beautiful.

So, if you've not been to Tuk Din's, do go and you wont regret the experience, and if you've not heard Mesut Kurtis' Qasidah Burdah, here it is:



Thanks to blogger atok who reminded me that my other half, has had this song in his head for some time now and here is the link in his kecek-kecek. You can also find the lyrics there.

37 comments:

Lyana Mauseth said...

kak teh, this burdah mmg i punya fav..i like the clips too...and the wonderful meaning...

kenapa lah kat norway xde cafe melayu mcm ni kan...bestnya kalau ada..nak suruh kak naz bukak lah satu :D

Kak Teh said...

Lyana, i only got to watch it last year and certainly the other versions are not as good.

Buat apa naz buka malaysian cafe di Norway, you pun dah balik.
Tuk Din's is a restaurant - dulu dia urus malaysia hall canteen.

mamasita said...

Hai Kak Teh..
I marvel at how you and all our fellow Malaysians knit together in ibadah activites in London and how happy you all are..so beautiful and admirable!
A very2 cozy and warm atmosphere..

Naz said...

Thanks for the intro. I'll try to get the CDs (kalau ada). Really love it.

Lyana,
Just come to my house for coffee...anytime! :)

kay_leeda said...

Kak Teh,

Wish I had more time to catch up with old friends here, just as you did. Work, personal commitments are pretty much keeping everyone so occupied. But must try jugak lah after this.

Thanks for sharing the qasidah. It's spiritually overwhelming :)

Shahieda said...

I just love the way you capture the moment, Kak Teh, very nostalgic!

Reminds me of the times when my mom drove us to school. She'd play qasidahs in the car and we'd sing along too. I just love the one you've posted!!

Kak Elle said...

KT first time I dengar this qasidah and thanks for the intro..

next time in London must look out for Tuk Din's and try his special dishes as mentioned.

Zendra said...

Kak teh, first time for me too - very nice but would be even better if I understand the lyrics. Can make out a few words though :)

Kama said...

Sweet jottings here, Kak Teh. Makes me feel warm all over reading it. Ditto on both count, elle...

melayudilondon said...

Hmmm best betul dapat jumpa you the other night. Lain kali i bake something less sweet OK? kalau lah sofiay tak meragam, agaknye lagi lama i dok situ.

ilene said...

Going down memory lane Kak Teh? What sweet memories of yesteryears.

Kak Teh said...

mamasita, this is the way i see it. We can stay away and lead our own lives and not mix around with others and we can also join in and be part of the extended family away from home. Being away, I'd like to know that we are able to care for each other in times of troubles, sickness and more importantly, death. If we are not there for each other, who will? As for now, Alhamdulillah, we feel that closeness. Yes, it is beautiful.

Naz, if you google Mesut Kursit's Burdah , am sure you can find the title of the CD.

Kak Teh said...

Kay, ya, i can see what you mean. There's only so much time in the day or night and there's just so much energy in us. That night i was tired too and there were lots of work to be finished but I thought, what the heck...a few hours away wouldnt hurt. and those were hours with close friends and children were really worth it.

Shahieda, When Raihan (if you have not heard of them do google - a nasyeed group from Malaysia and I think they've performed in South Africa too) first came out we listened to nothing else but them in the car. That was such an easy way to make the children learn the name of the prophets, the attributes of Allah and many more. And yes, Qasidah Burdah is one beautoful nasyeed that keeps playing in my mind now.

Kak Teh said...

Kak elle, next time you datang ke London , i will take you there. Oh, Isa Kamari is comingto London, perhaps I can take him there!!

Zendra, there are several versions of the qasidah and some come with translation. Do google and see.

Kak Teh said...

Puteri, thanks. Enjoy the qasidah. Growing up, I never knew qasidah to be so beautiful. There are some others that Mesut duets with Sami Yusof. Check him out too.


Melayu di London, it was too late for the small children - but yes, we must do that again and next time bring roti John.

Kak Teh said...

Ilene, at my age where else do i look to if not down memory lane. hehe! Ya, just feeling a tad nostalgic.

Atok said...

kak teh,

we r yet to visit Tok Din's, ni dah balik sini ni...boleh lah.

the burdah: kak teh's other half wrote a piece about it, back in 2005... go here:
http://kecek-kecek.blogspot.com/2005/02/songs-in-my-head.html

Kak Teh said...

atok, welkang back!! we missed you and bila nak buka posa kat tuk din's let us know.

and thanks for reminding me - seemed to have slipped my mind, maklumlah posa, kan? I bet the children enjoyed the trip back. Ceritalah!

Pi Bani said...

I tak pernah sampai London tapi selalu jugak dengar cerita Tok Din ni from my friends yang pernah belajar kat sana.

You bila pulak nak buka Kak Teh's Corner? Jual kacang phool... ;)

Kak Teh said...

Pi Bani, kalau kak teh bukan kak teh's corner, kak teh yang kenyang sebab tak berhenti makan! My kacang phool is still not perfect. hehe, nanti orang sakit perut.

Shahieda said...

I am familiar with the group Kak Teh. I haven't been fortunate to attend one of their performances though, maybe when they visit next time Insha-Allah.

I do know that after their visit, a few teenage boys from the Cape flats launched their group, known as Raihan 2 :)

Kak Teh said...

Shahieda, yes they are internationally known but it is a pity that their lead singer left. Ibelieve they are coming to perform in the UK after Eid. I try not to miss their performance here.

That group Raihan 2 - well, they must have been so inspired by Raihan!

mekyam said...

kt [and naz, if u're reading this, hon],

okay, now i'm totally confucius. the dessert is also called "qasidah" but has no al-burdah [a scarf, i think], izzit? =^)

or is the food "hasidah" as ag corrected me? or perhaps it's "khasidah"?

no wonder when i google for its recipe, i got thousands of arabic & persian lyrical pages. hahaha!

btw, that part of the video with people checking out all the pretty al-burdahs is so reminiscent of one those tintin adventures when senhor oliveira da figueira tout his wares at various shores of north africa. do you know the ones?

btw, i so like qasidah. [kt, right now i tgh listen for the 6th time while doing a bit of joget arab and swiffering the floor. the man has gone to central park for his rough & tumble thang with his buddies. so no looks of concern. ;^)]

Kak Teh said...

mekyam,have hasidah while wearing purdah while listening to qasidah burdah. How does that sound? Confused? anyway, yes, mesut kursit, apart from being a looker, has a lovely voice. I'm already swaying to the tune, partly because I'm always dizzy at the end of the day. So, no looks of concern from him as well. oh he did write about this in his GUiT too.

[danial][ma] said...

hej! Kak Teh...it's beautiful song...and i should try Tuk Din's too...;-)

Pak Zawi said...

Kak Teh,
Is Tuk Din the same person who served us meals at Malaysia Hall when we were there with you? If he is then I would give him the thumbs up.
I would like to contact Mekyam so if u can tell tell her to email me at mohdzawi@gmail.com, I will be most grateful to you.
Met Atok, his wife and Kakak at his dad's place in KB. Kakak autographed a flyer of The King and I for Pak Zawi and I will be keeping it for my future generation to keep when Kakak becomes a household name on the world's frama stage.

Kak Teh said...

danial, if and when you want to try Tuk Din's, let me know, okay?

Pak Zawi, I will certainly let Mekyam know - or she could be reading this now.

About Tuk Din, - no, the one that run the present canteen is not Tuk Din. Tuk Din managed the canteen in early 2000 if i am not mistaken.That's before the move to the present site.

You are wise in getting kakak's autograph now. You shd get adik's too because both of them are going to be household names.

Kitchen Guardian said...

kak teh,
bila i baca yr blog, i teghinagt sangat the days i was in london....tapi bilalh boleh pi lagi?? gamaknya tuk din yg manage m'sia zaman i di sana ka? tahun 88 until 92?
ish, i tak pernah nampak cd mesut ni here in kl!?

Kak Teh said...

KG, I think kalau 88- 92 bukanlah. Masa tu pun kak teh tak pergi ke malaysia hall. I think Tuk Din was managing early 2000.

Mai laaaa, bawa semua yang ada.

I dont know whether mesut ada CD - try googling.

ailininstockholm said...

We gotta go there next time, ye Kak Teh? IF there is a next time...

Kak Teh said...

Alilin of stockholm - am sure there will be another time. Just holler and I'll be there and we can go tuk din's together. You wont regret it. I saw video of Akif in the jemaah - funny!

aliff muhammad said...

Salam,
Kak Teh,

How I wish someday I will be able to visit you and your family+Tabby and other in London..

Listen to the Burdah..suddenly it become my favorite. What a soothing voice. I search about the lyric in English. Ada cerita sebalik qasidah ini!

DrSam said...

Salam Kak Teh. Being to the old Malysian Hall several times but no chance to meet the famous Tok Din. Probably the visit was too brief, stop by, over a plate of nasi goreng.

You've made Ramadhan lively in your own ways in the far land. Keep it up Kak Teh.

First time listening to the beautiful burdah. Really pleasing to my ears.

Kak Teh said...

Aliff, Insyaallah one day we will meet up and if it happens to be day of tazkirah etc at malaysia hall, i will take you there and you can experience the atmosphere of perantau melayu di negeri orang, yes? oh must let you know that tabby is acting up - so aggresive dengan siblings dia these days sejak balik.

Kak Teh said...

DrSam, I think we will have to make the most of where we are; find extended families in friends around us. But of course, we dont have to live in each other's shoes.

Yes, the brudah is beautiful and after sometime you'll find yourself humming to the tune. do look at AG's link in the blog abt the burdah.

D said...

Kak Teh,
I will always associate Tuk Din with you as my first time there (with u) was even before its launch! My Little Dean will definitely vouch for Tuk Din's nasi goreng - 3x tambah!!

Take care & remember not to take sweet food during buka! ;)

Kak Teh said...

D, of course!!! That was the day..but too bad you couldnt stay until that night. Your boy certainly enjoyed that nasi goreng, hehe! nanti datang lagi, okay? boleh mai restoran kak teh pulak.