Sunday, 12 July 2009

Puan Esah (CsH)

We got back to the house and the cats on Thursday mid-afternoon. They still remembered us and there was no sulking or biting despite our absence. Phew!!!
The verandah smelled of cat's pee because the neighbourhood's tom cats have been using our premises for loads of fun and games. As for the garden, it can but thrive in the tropics. The bunga tahi ayam, the bougainvillea, the cup and saucer flowers were bursting with bloom except for the frangipani, the spouse's favourite flower.

Where we live, the developers have planted a series of bunga cempaka on the wayside and when they are in full bloom the fragrance is quite intoxicating. The spaces in between (which are actually public domain) have been planted with flowering plants, trees of various shapes and sizes, serai and lengkuas by the house owners who live opposite these public plots.

Our neighbours, Puan Esah and Encik Yusof who live a few doors away from us had taken over a little plot about 2m x 1m in size and she had vegetables, chilis, serai, daun kunyit, lengkuas, banana and papaya plants growing in it. Typical kampung plants. They also made a kind of makeshift wooden fencing around this little garden. Again, typical kampung. Puan Esah came from a kampung in Malacca and she said to me they missed their kampung and the life style they had. Now they were in this Kuala Lumpur suburbia because this was where their children were. (That was exactly the same reason why my sister and 'Bang Long moved from their cosy house in Batu Pahat to Kuala Lumpur.)

Then about a year ago, workers from Majlis Bandaran came along, ripped up the little garden , dug up all the plants and threw them away. We found out later that this was done at the behest of the Datin who lived opposite the garden. She regarded it as an eyesore. Fair enough - but this was not part of her property and to add insult to injury she took over the same plot and started to plant (or rather got her maid to plant) a variety of flowers to provide a 'pleasant ' view from her house. She claimed she loved gardening but the garden plot of her corner house had been extended with concrete to enlarge her terrace house! It was a squalid thing to do, to chase out these kampung folks from this little plot and then to covet the same space for their ends, to grow pretty flowers. To me , this is the kind of mentality you often find amongst the Malay nouveau riche , our new middle class, or perhaps our new 'feudal overlords'.
In fact we were invited to visit their house and admire their English wallpaper!!

Years ago, Abah said to me the Malays are particularly partial to one nasty disposition - dengki, meaning spiteful. After over 50 years of independence, modernisation, material accretion and revitalized religious zeal, this streak still persists - from the lowest to the highest level. You don't need others to break up the Malays. They can do a jolly good job on their own. Thank you very much.

So, on the Thursday we got back, we went up the hill to buy some basic provisions. We bumped into Encik Yusof, he shook and held on to my hand and with tears shimmering in his eyes he said Puan Esah died just a few days ago on Saturday. I called Iain and he hugged our neighbour and Encik Yusuf recounted to us her last few hours. At last, Esah, you will find your little garden. Alfatihah.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

What upset me most is wtf is this bitch staying at a 'commoner's' residential area ??
With her wealth and self-proclaimed status, shouldn't she be at Bukit Damansara, Bukit Tunku, Sri Hartamas or other areas more 'classy' to her taste ?

Sometimes I wonder how many neighbors would pay their respect should she die. And thats putting it mildly !

darjal the cat

anak si-hamid said...

Thank you Darjal,

Remember that old saying?

Cacing menjadi ular naga.

Wish there had been more birds to eat up those cacing before they mutated.

sicKo^ said...

i just love on the way how u spell 'Incik' instead of 'Encik'..

HELAS said...

Actualy while reading the intro.. i just like the flower part.. How we Translate The 'Bunga Tahi Ayam' In English.. Chicken Shit Flower?? i think like that la. hhehe

but from the middle part.. till the end... what an angry and sad story..

may your neighbor rest in peace.. Al-Fatihah..

anak si-hamid said...

I know Helas. It's not fair why the Malays gave such an awful name to a beautiful little flower. Its botanical name is Lantana.
And thank you for your comment - you have perfectly captured the
gist of my posting.

SicKo^ - thank you for popping in. I am never too sure of the current Malay spelling. I still live in the dinosaur period when it was spelled Encik, and chat and kuching
and sungei. But a rose by another spelling smells just as sweet?

anak si-hamid said...

Addendum,
What actually is the right spelling? Encik? Incik?
The old spelling was Enchik, I think?
You're a troublemaker SicKo^. You will have to stand on the chair!

HELAS said...

its interesting reading your post... coz... if read only at the first paragraph... will miss the important part... it maybe locate in the middle paragraph, last paragrpah.. or anywhere.. but kaaan.. while reading any post.. long post especially.. sure i open dictionary.. hehe in order for me to understand the "Marvelous word" that i dunt know.. hahaha

for sicko.. u will scold .. or krna rotan.. coz nakal.. hehe... ow ya.. right now all using "EN.".. heheh more short more better i think :D

anak si-hamid said...

Thank you again Helas. Now get to bed. Tomorrow is a working day.

ph said...

May Allah bless Esah's soul.

I will like to tie this Datin Ridsect up, take her to somewhere in Wangsa Maju and leave her on the nest of the fire-ant.(The same one that i had accidentally stepped on).

sunnysideup said...

ph
Baaaddd idea. If you love the environment don't do it. Because the ants will move away . I mean who could take a bitch--tied or not, its the stench that chased the skunks away also !

darjal the cat

sicko
thanks to dewan bahasa and their grand idea of making BM a special language, it has made millions of ringgit worth of books obsolete and useless when they changed the spelling system -- not that the new system is superior.
When I asked one of the persons responsible for this grand idea to explain the 'strength' of the vowel 'e' and its sound, she replied by asking for my name and where I come from. This happened ayt a seminar when they launched the bahasa beku, or is it baku, or batu !!!!!!

ph said...

sunnysideup, you're right about those poor ants. Shall we then get several cans of Ridsect and drown her in it ?

HAHAHA..(evil laugh)