Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Lend Me A Tenor

Smlm pegi tgk teater dkt The*atre Ro*yal Plymouth, tgk cerita, 'Lend Me A Tenor', a musical. Dpt 2 complimentary tickets, harga asal satu seat itu adalah lebih GBP30 okeh (which made it GBP60++ la utk 2 seats kitaorg tu). Asalnya nak tgk The Sound of Music (previously performed before Lend Me A Tenor), tp sebab masa tu Ramadhan, adalah sgt x seswai utk an evening show. So bila ada peluang ni, I amik je la.

All I could say was - Wallah! Best giler.

Sbb setting cerita ni adalah sekitar tahun 1930s, maka ada feeling2 mcm tgk Annie the musical gitu (I really loved that film to begin with anyway). You know that feeling you get after you watched a really good movie at the cinema? The general good feeling all over? Well, multiply that feeling by a hundred. Mmg grand betul la, especially masa curtain up, fuhh... berdebau2. Mmg cukup mesmerized tgk baju liplap2 diorg, or time diorg elegantly menari across the floor, bulu2 tgn semua mencacak naik bila diorg tarik nyanyi high notes, and mmg melopong la tgk when they started tap-dancing effortlessly. Begitu la best skali nya. Tp x le puji lebih2, nnt kuciwa Hubs x pegi sbb sanggup menjaga Aisyah to let me have a night out hihihi. Apapon, terima kasih suami ku, pengorbanan mu ku kenang selalu!

Let's look at the pics, tp x byk pon, sbb masa show kan x leh on kan brg elektronik. So gmbr before the curtain went up je la, and a few of myself :P

[1] The Program Book

[2] View from our seats, in the Dress Circle (Mezzanine). It was a very good spot, I must agree

[3] Full house

[4] This is a 3-tier auditorium, accommodating nearly 1400 seats at any one showing

[5] X dpt gmbr actress, tepek gmbr kami posing dlm auditorium ajo bole?

[6] Dpn sweet shop masa interval (approx. show 80 minit, rehat 20 minit, sambung lg 50 minit)

[7] Dpn Box Office plak

[8] Entrance

[9] Hei sudah2 la bergambar, kat luar teater dlm sejuk beku hujan pon masih poyo kah?

Ni dia synopsis cerita 'Lend Me A Tenor'.
In 1934, the renowned tenor Tito Merelli, known to his fans as "Il Stupendo," is scheduled to sing the lead in Otello. The opera is being produced as a gala fundraiser for the Cleveland Opera Company. Unfortunately, even before the star leaves his hotel room, everything begins to unravel. Chaos ensues when Merelli's wife, who has mistaken an autograph-seeker hidden in his closet for a secret lover, leaves him a "Dear John" letter. The distraught Merelli accidentally is given a double dose of tranquilizers to calm him and passes out. Saunders, the company's General Manager, is determined that the show will go on (for his own financial sake), so he asks his assistant Max to impersonate the opera star. Max puts on the blackface makeup required for the role of Otello, and his disguise succeeds admirably – until Merelli, also in blackface, wakes up and heads for the stage. What follows is a chain-reaction of mistaken identity, farcical plot twists, double entendres, innuendoes, and constant entrances and exits through many doors.
(source: Wikipedia)

Paling membanggakan, cerita ni adalah revival of the original one, after being first performed in the West End in 1986. Tempat pertama (premier) of the showing adalah di Plymouth, of all places. After this, it will be performed kat West End, London, again.
The new musical version, with book and lyrics by Peter Sham and Music by Brad Carroll will open at the Theatre Royal, Plymouth, running from 24 September to 6 October 2010, after which a West End transfer is intended. It will star Matthew Kelly as Saunders, Michael Matus as Tito, Sally Ann Triplett as Maria and Damian Humbley as Max.
(source: Wikipedia).

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Girl Talk

Lama telah mengabaikan blog ni. Mmg teramat busy. Busy menyesuaikan diri dgn keadaan baru (new academic year) pon ye jg. Hubs is taking on a course and has a few classes per week, so ada hari2 aku kena jaga Aisyah for two hours kat rumah in the afternoon. Apabila ini berlaku, aku usually kena study extra hours utk menimpal balik the hours I have lost, so each minutes count. Also, we are mid-training Aisyah utk tido awal as in 8.30 pm, so that I can come home earlier, all of us have dinner earlier, and then after Aisyah goes to bed, resume my study sampai midnite ke. In an ideal world, that is.

1st night berjalan lancar, Aisyah slpet from 8 pm sampai 6.20 pg. Mlm kedua, hmmm.. masuk tido pkl 9 pm, tp Masya Allah, dekat pkl 11 pm baru kawan tu lelap, dia buat perangai bgn baring, bgn, baring, menceceh, dsb nya. By the time dia tido, dgn aku2 sklai dah go jawab nya. Terasa agak ralat di situ, sbb kalo tahu nak tido pkl 11 pm, baik aku stay kat opis lewat sket, bole siap keja. Pelan asal nak buat kerja after Aisyah tido tu dah x jd. Skang ni dlm dilema, x tahu nak teruskan ke x proses menidurkan Aisyah awal. Tp go on je la kot, try for a few more days, utk adjust masa tido dia. Rome isn't built in a day, kan? Kalo menjadi, lps ni jd burung hantu la aku, keja mlm2 buta plak heheh.

Walau pon lama x menulis, aku tetap teringat2 nak menulis. Apatah lg bila family aku bertanya2 jg bila kitaorg nak update ni. Smlm siap termimpi2 lg adik ipar aku, bertanya dlm mimpi aku, 'Bila nak hapdet cerita Aisyah?'. Atas dasar guilty yg melanda, aku hapdet la hari ni ok. Korban waktu dah ni jgn x tahu...

Sbb lama x menulis, cerita ada byk, tp x tahu nak start yg mana. Kita fokus kat Aisyah je la yeh. Paling menarik skang ialah sbb dia dah bole susun words into correct sentences. By the looks of it, she speaks mostly English, lengkap accent ko, terpegun aku, sbb serasanya aku x la ajar sgt English words kat dia, but Alhamdulillah, she is bright enough to learn from her peers and environment kot. Ni excerpt2 dialog yg pernah Aisyah ckp yg aku rasa menggeletekkan hati.

My friend.

Ada skali tu, kitaorg balik drpd town berjalan kaki, and ternampak ada satu budak perempuan bertudung (non-Malay). Budak tu senyum je la tgk Aisyah yg tgh berlari2 bermain, refusing to sit in her buggy. Tiba2 Aisyah terjerit2 dkt budak tu...

Aisyah: Wait! wait!
Me (dgn nada bergurau): Sapa tu?
Aisyah: My FRIEND!

Aku dan Hubs terkejut. X sangka dia faham my question. Jawab tepat dgn konteks plak tu. Wah.. siap dah ngaku friend ye.... Aku rasa interesting sgt part cross-language yg berlaku di sini. Sorry, aku org Comp Sci sentiasa relate dgn how we train robots to learn, and tiap2 kali aku observe Aisyah punya speech, I never fail to see kebesaran Ilahi.



Aisyah skang ptg2 je mesti mintak ice-cream (bg a few small scoop je pon). She pronounces it, 'Ais-tweeem'. Kalo dpt muka mesti bahagia. Cute banget. Kdg2 dia mintak kitaorg buat2 tahu, dgn harapan dia terlupa. Tp ada sekali tu x menjadi, and she won bcoz x tahan dgr dia went on and on.

Me (mengalah): Ok...
Aisyah: Alright! I like ice-cream.

Sekali lg Hubs and I terkejut dan ketawa terkekek2. Sudah la ayat penuh and grammatically correct yg part I like ice-cream tu, tp cara dia sebut 'Alright' tu adlah sgt mengikut street talk slanga Bristih *pengsan!*



Ahhh... semua parents dread fasa yg ni. Aisyah sudah mula nak masuk fasa why. Cth terkini, Aisyah tgk Ayah dia basuh pinggan, and dia pon bertanya,

Aisyah: Ayah, why blah blah blah wash blah blah blah..?

Blah blah blah tu sebenarnya gibberish, tp faham maksud dia nak apa. Dia tanya, kenapa Ayah basuh pinggan? Hrp nya x lama lg dpt complete kan terus the whole sentence. At this stage it's still cute, tp kalo peringkat why this, why that... oh, pening gak nak carik jawapan dan mendiam kan eh?

or skali tu, dia pelik tgk aku tgh ironing (nmpk sgt jarang2 buat), so she went,

Aisyah: Mummy, why na na na na na.....

tp paham la maksud dia apa kan hehe...


Dah bole mengira sket2, tp x kenal nombor lg rasanya. Lebih kpd hafazan, chewah.

Me: 1, 2, 3 ....
Aisyah: 4, 5, 6 ...
Me: 7 ,
Aisyah (menyampuk): 8, 9, 10!



Dia punya articulation adalah sgt mantap.

Aisyah: I'm COLD ... (sebutannya C-O-L-D, qalqalah pada C, O dua harkat, and emphasis or another qalqalah on the D. Mcm tau2 je ejaan nya COLD. Padahal x tahu ABC pon lg.


Train set

Baru2 ni belikan dia train set. Kalo train tu mmg dia minat la, dia panggil Choo Choo Twen (choo choo Train). Tp x sangka plak dia paham and tahu nama part2 dlm toy set tu, like Twack (tracks) and Stop Sign. Big word tu utk 2-yr-old, non-native English speaker tu, to say stop sign.

Aisyah (showing me a Stop Sign): Stop sign..
Aisyah (showing me a different stop sign): Another stop sign...



She sings Old McDonald's now, tp keluar, 'E-I-E-O' (-iya-i-yo)



She says a lot words in a sing-song, the way typical British would say it, like


See youuuuu...




Aisyah has decided NOT to call me Ibu like I have been trying to teach her for the past two years since her birth. Dgn begitu decisive skali beliau sudah meng-convert-kan my title kepada Mummy. Nasib la aku ni flexible, so apa2 je la. Mana x flexible, drpd umur 6 bulan dah bole panggil Ayah, sebut Ibu x mau2 gak, cemburu haku tau. so mummy pon mummy la, glamer gitu. Ngeh ngeh...

Tp, dia pandai psycho kan aku skang ni, semua ayat dia yg berupa permintaan or arahan, dia tambah 'Mummy' dgn nada lembutnya kat hujung ayat. Cair aku korg tahu x, mesti x sampai hati nak say No dah, haih! Contoh,

Sit down, Mummyyyy.... (masa tepuk2 lantai, nak suh continue main ngan dia and jgn sibuk blogging)
Sleep, Mummy, sleeepppp... (masa nak suh guling2 peluk dia)
More, Mummyyyyy... (masa nak mintak second serving of ais-tweeeeem)
No, Mummyyyyy... (masa x nak buat sesuatu yg aku suruh)



The one I love most is when I tell her,

Me: I love you, baby
Aisyah (repeating): Iyu, bebeh.

Melts my heart every time.... :)


Sunday, September 26, 2010

Can Anyone Please Help 'SiTakut'?

Baru2 ni, I got this message in my ShoutBox.

Disebabkan tiada emel address or link utk contact SiTakut personally, I am writing up an entry here to respond to the message. Nak tulis kat ShoutBox, ada limited number of characters la plak, so this is the only way that I can think of. Also, I am asking my readers jg, if anyone can help SiTakut out, please leave your comments ye. Hopefully, SiTakut still comes back to read this, ntah2 dia dah give up coz I took my sweet own time plak replying. Many apologies, tp last week mmg kaw2 la busy nya. And now it's Monday again, where had my weekends gone off to?

First of all, I just want to clear up one thing: I am not the best person to answer this question, but since it has been asked, I will try my best to answer it.

Secondly, I don't have much info on your situation to base my answer with, so I am just going with assumptions. Maaf kalo2 x tepat or x membantu sgt pon...

Let's see, you wrote that your SV said you might fail. Can you think fo any reasons why he has said this?? Was he really certain about it, or did he say it as a challenge to get you working harder, maybe (tough love at play)? If I were you, I would ask what he'd meant by it, and maybe discuss with him what I could do to rectify the situation (and saving myself from failing). It might be that taking a few extra classes to strengthen the knowledge is all that is needed. Or maybe devising a Gantt chart with him to show what my aims are for the next few months (and abide by it!) until completion would the trick. Hopefully, he'll see that I really care about succeeding, and agrees once again to help me get there.

If that doesn't work, and he really has lost interest in supervising, I would take this matter towards the Dean of Graduate Studies, and see what he thinks the best course of action is. He might suggest a change of supervisor or something like that. Whatever it is, it is best to let someone know that something is definitely not going right somewhere.

If all that fails, and there seems like nothing can be done to salvage the study, then it is the best time to contact the sponsors (KPT and University). They definitely have all the answers, and I should imagine they have had to handle cases like this before, but I sincerely hope it doesn't get to this stage, SiTakut.

I've known a few friends who have had problems with their SVs, (be it un-cooperative SVs, allegedly racist SVs, retired SVs or even deceased SVs!) and some of them returned to Msia and resumed their PhDs locally, whilst some decided to remain in the UK, but moved to a different university (and they had all managed to get their PhDs eventually, Alhamdulillah!). The actual process of this transfer I know very little of, but as I wrote earlier, KPT would have the answers.

If any of my readers know any additional advice to give, please do add in the comment box. I am sending positive vibes your way, SiTakut, and may this rough patch be temporary only. Semoga Allah helps us all... Amin...

Maaf jika nasihat x berapa tepat, I had little information to go by.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

New Beginnings

Hari ni 3 cerita nak muat dlm satu entry, tp all pon ada tema yg sama, New Beginning. Cerita adalah mengikut kronologi.

New Beginnings #1 - Happy Bday to Hubs!!!
Yup yup yup, it's Hubs' bday. Hari ini dlm sejarah, I baked him a cake. Konon nak surprise la kan, smgt membakar from morning. I ni jenis fail la kalo bakar membakar kek ni, bentat la, merekah tgh la, senget sebelah la, hangit la, mcm2 hal betul. Korg mesti kata aku exaggerate je kan, sapa2 pon bole buat kek, but as proof kan, sila baca ni - as I was taking the cake out of the oven, Hubs masuk dapur, and he was stunned and said, 'Itu kek hangus ke mmg dia kek coklat?'. Bolehhhhh?

So surprise dah terbongkar, and I shooed him away from the kitchen sbb nak buat topping. Lps tu ajak Aisyah bubuh hundreds and thousands plak atas kek tu, and voila, dah siap kek bday utk Hubs!!!

Rasanya, mmmmm mmg giler sedap lah. Mmg masuk bakul angkat sendiri pon, sbb kejayaan yg x pernah tercapai kan. Pastu nak pat myself on the back lg some more, sbb dgn bijaknya dah kurgkan gula dlm kek awal2 (resipi selalu suh bubuh ridiculous amount of gula, teruk betu!), so bila buh topping, mmg perfecto ah. Chess lebih2 lak ek puji diri sendiri hehehe....

But what's more important, Birthday Boy adalah sgt happy dgn kek ini, and he said that it was one of the best chocolate cake he's ever tasted. I am well-chuffed!

New Beginnings #2 - School's Back!
After dah sarapan kat rumah dgn Hubs and Aisyah (of chocolate cake and roti telur), I went to Uni. Masa sampai tu, wah.. everything in full swing la. I'm guessing that it was Student's Club day ke hapa, yg mana semua club pon duk promote club masing2 nak ajak students baru join. Dari jauh lg nmpk the Cheerleader Squad duk praktis tgh2 court tu. Mmg ralit kalo tgk diorg buat cartwheels, back flips bagai. Masa gmbr ni diambil (dari jauh sebab segan), diorg tgh wat Basket Toss. Sebelah diorg ni lepak plak jocks from the Uni lacross team.

And across the other side of the court, kedengaran bunyi trombone, trumpet dsb nya. Oh, ni plak pastinya kelab Brass Band kot.

Ironic plak sbb tiba2 teringat seni kata lagu Taylor Swift's 'You Belong With Me' - "she wears high heels, i wear T-shirt, she's cheer captain, and I'm on the bleachers...' Ewah, nak dgr penuh, sila klik video di bawah la yeh. One of my fav songs jgk ni, and video clip dia adlah sgt sweeeeet *like*

Pastu terlalu satu kawasan ni, rupa2nya mmg ada satu expo utk students baru kot, from banks to student counselling, to chaplaincy to computer stores, to even Pizza Hut semua buat pameran. Yg Pizza Hut ni even giving out free pizzas, so imagine how jam-packed it was! Masa tgh adjust2 handset nak amik gmbr tu, tiba2 terbelaga dgn SV plak, and he said 'Hi'. Uhuks, cancel amik gmbr, cpt2 mencecet masuk lab :P

Actually before masuk lab tu buat satu detour dulu, gi scanned my passport utk International Office. Leceh betul la skang ni, undang2 Imigresen Uk adalah sgt2 ketat ok, skang diorg dah nak keep record of setiap Int Students nya passport, every year plak. Dulu2 xde, baru tahun ni implement. Pastu I also heard that kalo nak buat visa application and visa extension application pon harga dah naik, pastu byk la songeh dia nak menyusahkan. Apa pon, aku berdoa agar Allah permudahkan lah segalanya utk aku dan keluarga aku esok, amin. Masa kat situ sempat berbual dgn org yg scanned tu, baru je grad semlm. But she had been a mature students with two kids, so we had tonnes in common psl study. We talked about how difficult it was striving around other single students, sbb kita ada byk responsibility etc. At one point in her study she said, the father of her kids passed away, so masa tu dia mmg rasa x nak study dah, but in the end she pulled through and graduated - her name was even called first for her session! So cerita dia ni kiranya membakar smgt utk terus berjuang!

On my way, I noticed that papan tanda pon sudah tukar baru. Snap sket, utk kenangan di hari muka. Cuba la cari aku duduk lab mana hehehe...

Oh my lab pon ada dpt machine baru la sempena tahun akademik baru kot, tp utk Mac users je la. bapak besar skrin dia ok, lg besar drpd TV aku kat rumah, this pic does no justice. Wireless mouse lagi... jeles2, jeles...

This is my lab. Skang mcm hutan tropika sket lab, sbb a lab mate of ours went away to Belgium for 3 months, and pokok2 dia x de sapa nak jaga kat umah, so dia bwk ke lab and mintak kitaorg tolong siram n tgk2 kan. Bagus jgk, nyaman je mata memandang...

And this is my station. New term, new look la sket kan. Saja letak more pics, pemberi smgt la konon hehe. Gmbr2 those who are important to me - my small family, my parents and siblings, Hubs' parents and siblings, geng tutorians, geng Plymouthians, and Che Fadh my closest mentor.

Ok x hiasan nya?

New Beginnings #3 - Graduation
Ptg tu plak gi tgk si Afiq and si Anas nya konvokesyen di The Hoe. Diorg baru saja mendapat Ijazah Bacelor dalam Mechanical Engineering. Congratulations, guys! Sempat la berkenalan dgn family diorg, and berposing2an. Ni pon kira mencedok motivasi study gak, alangkah best nya kalo tamat belajar and dpt konvo!

Tp konvo kat sini agak informal, x mcm kita kat Msia, fuh mcm pertabalan Agong aje gaya nya. Tp best, sbb bila informal, jd lebih casul and laid-back, plus org nya pon x ramai. Kalo Msia, biasa nya satu sesi tu 700 org pelajar tu selamba aje. Sini mungkin about 200 pon x sampai kot per session. Majlis pon over an hour aje, so you have more time to be wit your family and those who matters most kan. And venue dia plak tepi laut, they put up marquees all over utk membuatkan jd spt satu big hall, which was nice, I must say.

X rajin nak study lg x tau la aku...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Toughest Job You'll Ever Love :)

Why do two year olds have to negate everything we say eh? Ini excerpt dialog yg selalu kedengaran di balik pintu rumah kitaorg:

Pakai seluar? No!!!
Change your nappy? Nooo!!!!
Wash your hands? Noooo!!!
Sit in your buggy? Nooooo!!!
Brush your teeth? Noooo!!!

Haih.. menguji kesabaran betul. Sebenarnya kalo kita x terdesak mengejar deadline or waktu nak clock-in kerja, x la problem sgt. Bole la mengaplikasikan yg Supernanny Jo Frost tu punya teknik. Since most of her techniques involve not giving in to children, yakni kalo diaorg acting up, just say, 'We're not going anywhere until you behave', and tunggu la sampai budak2 give in (to establish authority and utk menujukkan crying doesn't get you anywhere or anything), sometimes mcm x sempat nak pakai jgk la, especially kalo time nak cpt tu. Haih, mmg rasa nak nangis jgk la handle, especially kalo handle sdn bhd, i.e. Hubs gi keja or class.

Apa bole buat, typical two year old mmg mcm tu, tanya la sapa2 pon yg ada toddler. Most of the time Aisyah is considered well-behaved pon, so for that aku dah bersyukur dah. Tp on my part la, kena lebih sabar dan sabar dan sabar lg...

Apapon, marah kat budak2 ni x lama. Especially bila buat aksi2 sebegini...

[1] Time x nak pakai seluar, insisted nak pakai sepender 'Frog' aje. Isn't it the cutest thing you ever saw, tho'?

[2] Time ni dia bg org buat mcm2 kat rambut dia, even braid pon dia layan. As of late ni, masuk fasa 'dont-touch-my-hair', alang kan nak tocang, sikat pon dia x bagi. Sudahnya rambut free-style spt gmbr dia pakai pyjamas Dora tu. Grrr, tp sabarrrr....

[3] Time 'I'm-not-staying-put-for-pics'. Susah betul nak amik gmbr ngan dia skang ni. Celebrity pon x mcm ni. Lom sempat snap lg dah lari ke lain.

[4] Time 'I'm-not-getting-in-the-buggy-and-you-can't-make-me'. Sila fokus kpd muka si Ibu yg sedikit kebengangan di situ, tgh menarik napas pjg agar maintain cool.

[5] Time menjerit panggil 'Duck!!!!' (actually, it was a seagull that she'd seen). Vokal dia sgt mantap ok. Ni pon satu lg demonstration of 'you-can-take-my-pic-all-you-like-but-I'm-not-posing-for-you-ha-ha' punya kes jg.

Yup, two years old. Where tantrums rule at the moment. What a difficult age this is. Mind you, ten years from now pon, aku rasa aku still akan ckp, 'Twelve, what a difficult age this is', when puberty hits her and all. Alah, dua puluh tahun lg pon aku still pikir mcm tu jgk kot. Nama pon parents kan. Sbb itu la x leh menderhaka pada ibubapa kita. Bkn senang keja ni rupanya. But soon they'll grow up so fast, and we'll definitely look back and be missing days like these. then we'll say, 'if only we could go back to the time when ...' ahhh... tiba2 terasa tua :)

Monday, September 20, 2010


Hari ni students semua naik semula utk sesi akademik yg baru di University of Plymouth. Students baru dah start orientasi last week, tp x berapa perasan sgt sbb x ramai mana. Sekali bila semua dah berhimpun balik semula, tu diaaa... gamat and penuh kawasan Uni ni ha. Skang pon mcm2 ada di Uni, promo back to school la, kaunter International Students la, kaunter NUS card la, semua sempena budak2 baru naik ni la... Graduation Week pon dah mula hari ni, and as far as I know ada beberapa adik2 undergrads Melayu kita yg akan bergraduasi this Wednesday. Wah, saat yg indah ye utk hangpa semua...?

Pada masa yg sama jg mula la diri ni hyperventilate mengenangkan dah nak masuk tahun 3 (eceh.. bole x, x nak ngaku tahun 3 lg sbb officially start belajar hari tu akhir Oct kan, konfem kes denial yg hebat ni hihi). Pelbagai persoalan menerjah kepala, tp semuanya menjurus kepada persoalan yg sama, yakni - cukupkah?

- cukupkah masa utk menyiapkan reserach dlm waktu sepatutnya?
- cukupkah skop kerja yg dilaksanakan/dalam perancangan utk dilaksanakan?
- cukupkah skill teknikal yg diperlukan utk membangunkan apa yg dirancang?
- cukupkah ilmu dan hujah nak defend kerja ni esok2?
- cukup kah duit kalo nak extend visa dsb nya?

Cukupkah? Cukupkah?

Wah, dramatisnya aku.

Nasib baik la kita ni org Islam, maka bila timbul persoalan begini, harus kembali kembali kepada Allah, dan ingat kepada konsep Kun Fayakuun. Maka ambil lah peluang ini semetara masih ada masa utk terus dan terus meningkatkan berusaha, dan berdoa lah moga2 Dia permudahkan segalanya utk kita. Pikir lama2 pon buat stress aje ye dok?

Ni disertakan lampiran (ayat skema) 3-months progress yg lps, isi dah lama, tp baru td terasa nak submit ke Grad School. Dah 23 months dah perjalanan my PhD ni u olssss....!

Ni plak kita kasi upload sket gmbr org yg penuh persoalan philosophical on the 1st day back di Uni. Kelabu satu mcm je muka nya, kelat2 pahit mengingatkan persoalan Cukup kah itu.

Despite all the commotion of little kiddies returning back to school bagai, I do feel a lot like watak Cecilia dalam comic strip phdcomics yg disiarkan some time last week, time adik2 undergrads kepoh2 masuk semula Uni, tp us postgrads rasa mcm 'eh, kita ada cuti ke baru2 ni? kenapa mcm 24/7 kat lab aje? Where did our summer holiday go?'. Heh, spot on betul mamat Jorge Cham ni (he actually credited Kelly Mc.Master U for this particular comic idea, tp this really IS how I feel right now).

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Our Exeter Trip

Hari Khamis hari tu gi jalan2 Exeter, konon2 nya as a reward la kan. Nak jalan jauh, mahal and time-consuming, jd nya malas nak break work momentum, so me and Hubs decided utk pergi la melawat Bandar Exeter yg sbnarnya hanya lah 35 miles from Plymouth, tp x pernah2 gak sampai. Typical lah, yg dekat2 tu x melawat dulu la konon2 nak gi bila2 pon bole. Tp biasanya kalo tangguh2 gini last2 dah nak balik esok langsung x jejak kaki ke sini. So kitaorg pon amik la peluang ni utk jalan2 x de pasal...

Naik Crosscountry train je, every half an hour ada. Perjalanan mkn masa sejam, tukar train dkt Exeter St. Davids, then naik tren kecik 2 gerabak aje menuju ke Exeter Central. Mula2 sampai tu ingatkan Exeter ni mcm Plymouth aje luasnya, tp besar rupanya town dia. And sbb Exeter ni bandar terdekat dgn Plymouth, kitaorg ingatkan lebih kurg sama la gaya bangunan, jalan, etc, rupanya silap gak. Exeter ni mmg terlalu byk historic buildings dia, and jalan raya pon byk lg pakai cobbles so mmg feeling2 purba lah hehe. Pastu bersimpang siur and sesat lg menyesatkan jalan2 dia. Baru aku paham kenapa Che Fadh kata Plymouth ni mcm pembangunan terancang masa beliau dtg melawat, sbb mmg ia pon, kat tempat lain x mcm tu sgt. Almaklumlah satu Plymouth ni kena bombed masa 1st World War, so itu psl la pembangunan selepas tu terancang and pakai grid system yg lebih teratur. Tp bangunannya mmg very buruks la di Plymouth, ala2 bangunan kerajaan Msia tahun 60-an gitu, hok kita dok tgk dlm cerita2 P Ramlee lah basically. Very the bleurgh oneee kan?

Anyways, kita stop psl history and continue psl entry jalan2 ni. Plan asal nak ikut Walking Tour, tp tour start pkl 11 pg, so tour apa kebenda bertolak pon lambat nyeh nyeh. So kitaorg pandai2 je la cari jalan sendiri lps amik map drpd Tourist Information Centre dia. Aku tempek gambar2 je la eh, yg agak2 ok tu aku share. Gmbr pon x de menarik sgt sbb Hubs malas nak amik gmbr church bagai, but Exeter ni terkenal dgn berpuluh churches and cathedrals, so d'uh.. gmbr apa aku nak tepek ha?

[1] Baru sampai...

[2] Cathedral Yard & Hall of the Vicar's Choral

[3] Berjalan dlm bandar. Mkn buah langsat byk jg sini (sesat). Tp Exeter bagus utk shopping2 kalo byk duit. Byk jg kedai2 yg xde di Plymouth ada di sini. Ulu betul tempat kitaorg duduk ni rupanya ish ish ish...

[5] Lunch di Burger King mkn Bean Burger aje and Cheese Balls sbb x jumpa kedai makan Halal. Rupanya ada berlambak kedai kebab tp di kawasan Muslim, about half a mile away. Tu pon terjumpa sbb mencari2 masjid lps mkn tu.

[6] Mencari masjid. Masjidnya di York Road, should you guys dtg sini and nak cari tempat solat. yg pic kedua yg ada pintu merah tu adalah masjid dia yg lama (but still in use). Gmbr lps tu masjid baru dlm pembinaan diorg, besar, mcm kat Msia dah rasanya! Nmpknya komuniti Islam dia lebih kuat dan hebat di Exeter la (if the size of the mosque is the indication)

[7] Bergambar di Riddle Statue. Bole posing berdua sbb Aisyah tertido dlm stroller masa ni hehe...

[8] Exeter Old Bridge

[9] Quayside. Kawasan ni cantik... perumahan sekitar pon nmpk mcm kawasan org2 berada aje, ye la, mana x nya, view cantik kan. Mmg tenang je facing the water. Having lived in Plymouth for a good while now, kitaorg suka sgt duk kaw dkt2 air, x kira la, lake ke sea ke, mmg aura dia best semacam. I don't know mcm mana la bila balik Msia nanti duk rumah kitaorg tuh yg so far away from all this. We will sure miss the water!

[10] Ni tempat paling best of the entire trip - says Aisyah. Playground la, apa lagi...

Overall mmg best trip ni. Tgk aje la si Aisyah, nangis2 x mo balik. Alahai... (ps: bkn dia terjatuh ni, tp menunjuk perasaan)

Kitaorg balik pon after dah dining dkt La Tasca and then solat Maghrib dulu. Sampai rumah dah pon pkl 10 mlm. Tp nmpknya kena dtg lg, sbb byk area x sempat nak melawat pon, like the famous City Wall or Exeter Castle. Maybe next time nak ikut walking tour dia, then masa dkt Quayside, naik water taxi ke pusing2 canal tu best jgk. Peringatan utk diri sendiri:

1. Sila bertolak awal. Walau pon perjalanan hanya sejam lebih aje, tp tour start awal pagi dan kena bg margin kesesatan yg besar sbb bandar nya besar x mcm Plymouth

2. Kalo sampai lewat di bandar nya, mcm2 benda dah terlepas spt naik boat, masuk Underground Passage or museum dsb nya tutup / last entry around 4 pm mcm tu. Even tho summer dan matahari masih bersinar memancar, servis2 ini adlaah tidak berfungsi lg

3. Walking time estimation yg diberikan di papan tanda di Exeter itu adalah penipu. Sila gandakan 2 atau 3 kali ganda drpd masa yg ditulis, mungkin sbb langkah kita pendek atau pon berat stroller atau keduanya sekali termasuk margin kesesatan (lagi)

4. Jalan2 masa winter adalah x seswai di sini sbb masjid jauh drpd town (winter=hari pendek=waktu solat cpt habis / dkt2 sgt). Kalo dari Plymouth lg la x payah sbb distance nya x sampai 2 marhalah ok, so no jamak qasar

5. La Tasca adalah kedai makanan bertemakan makanan org Spanish, bkn Italian. Masuk ingat nak mkn spaghetti (to coax Aisyah into eating sbb hari tu dia x mkn proper sgt, takut perut dia masuk angin, kalo spaghetti komfem dia mkn coz it's her fav food). Sudahnya spaghetti pon x nampak byg, mkn la paella. You'd think I'd knew that already huh, having spent a week in Barcelona this summer? Tp tidakkkkk... nak ckp Thank you in Spanish pon dah lupa la mlm tu (it's Gracia, btw). Hampagasssss!