01 January 2010

Will this be a better year?

Late last night Pakcik received a short New Year message from an ex-Almanar girl doing pharmacy in Bandong. She expected to read my New Year resolution. No, last night, I had no wish to write one. So Pakcik happily turned in soon after watching on TV the arrival of New Year celebration.

Then early this morning, another New Year message came through from a dear English friend of my yester-years, Ian Sanderson, now happily settled in the States with children and grandchildren.

“Hassan,

Happy new year to you & your family.
A few recent pictures for you.

All the best,
Ian”


HMS Endeavour


One of the six pictures is a sketch he made of HMS Endeavour, the ship used by the great English explorer, Captain James Cook in the 18th century. My friend must be reflecting of his life, his migration across the Atlantic. Indeed, I have had a kind of migration, too, from a busy life on the West Coast to the East, across the great Banjaran Titiwangsa! So, hurriedly I went in search of one of my old diaries. And I found one.

As usual, the first entry of that diary carried a ‘doa’ - in Arabic. Translated, here is a part of what I wrote 55 years ago:

“ ------------ Engkau telah mencipta diriku. Jadilah aku salah seorang daripada mereka yang berimam dengan hati mereka, bukan dibibir; membuat kebaikkan dan berjaya. Kiranya Engkau mengambil aku kembali biarlah selepas aku membuat kebajikkan ------------”

At the end of the diary was a list of 41 classmates and their addresses. Of that number, 16 persons, including two ladies, are no longer around. I say Al-Fathihah for these friends, people who coloured my life.

As always, the present and the past pupils of Almanar, I urge you to make your wishes and write them down. Years down the road you will be able to reflect whether in your fancy free days you made wishes that you are not ashamed of today. Have you got it all right or all wrong?

I have ceased to keep diaries but Pakcik still have unwritten wishes. I am not happy with Almanar classes in 2009 because an unusually large number dropped out during the course of the year. It is my wish that I will find a way in 2010 to keep as many pupils tuned and determined to improve themselves in life.

In the old diary mentioned above, Pakcik concluded with two lines in English,

“A year of success. May it be followed by similar years.”

Today, the first day of 2010 I ask myself, “Will this be a better year?”


Berkhidmat kerana Tuhan untuk kemanusiaan.



P.S.
Incidentally, I immediately asked Ian Sanderson why he did the sketches and here is his reply (not quite the reason I surmised above):

Hassan,
I did the ship pictures - some done on old marine charts -something different that might appeal.
I started with the Cutty Sark [a famous tea clipper ship that is at Greenwich, London]- I had made a model some time ago, same with America'- In 1880 it sailed across the Atlantic & beat 13 UK sailboats. Queen Vitoria asked 'who came second' -answer- 'there is no second'!



Cutty Sark


America


Free Spirit


Free Spirit 2


Great Harry 2





15 comments:

GUiKP said...

InsyaAllah 2010 will be a better year for all of us. Keep well and soldier on Pak Cik. Ahamdulillah you've achieved lots. May AL-MANAR continues to thrive, and make a world of difference to those it has warmly embraced and inspired.

Anonymous said...

Dear Pakcik...
I always remember those days when you asked me to keep a diary. When I was at MRSM I tried to write a diary, unfortunately something bad happened to me because of that diary. I then immediately stopped writing one.

It has been 5 years since that incident and all these years I keep recalling your advice about keeping track of my life.

A few days ago I read my friend's blog, she wrote something about how her grandmother kept all the diaries and old documents. Later she found one of her mother's diaries. Even though the content of the diary was about simple daily activities she said that she felt so happy to read them written. Suddenly it came back to to me. I don't want my life to go by just like that. So Ii promised myself, starting from 2010 onward I'll start writing diary again and it will be one of my new year wishes for 2010.

Al-Manar said...

GUiKP
You have made good in the academic world. Keep it up.Hope the New Year will bring more of the Milan and better.

Al-Manar said...

Fara,
It is a pity when you return from Indnesia this year the memories of all your years there have nothing on paper other than the scroll. All the best for your final.

ARZ said...

Pak Chik,

I recalled a phrase that says, "if life is worth living, it's worth writing about".

How true indeed.

Anonymous said...

Dear Pak Cik,
I am touched when I read this post.Yes,that is true.Will this year be a better year for me?Years changed but I have never succeeded to be good in English.Environment here makes me hate this subject.My lecturers are not really helpful to improve my English.I do really want to write to you but time restricts me to do that. I want to master English.That is my wish for this year. Hope it will come true.

~AZMIERA~
p/s:I miss you both.Love Pak cik & Mak Cik

Al-Manar said...

ARZ
I tend to agree with that writer.For that reason you have a great deal on record of your very fascinating cycling exploits, supported with lovely pictures. You have enough materials to go on print.Happy New Year and hope everyone is well now.
Pakcik

Al-Manar said...

Azmiera,
I do not agree with you. The last two years have seen a lot of improvement. That you do not feel so is good, as this would make you keep working on it.
Hope this important year will end with success.
Pakcik

madam gold said...

Salam Pak Cik,
I was too busy to even think about my new resolution.On the night of the new year,at 12:am sharp I heard sounds of fire crackers from my bedroom.Forgetful me asked hubby, what were these people celebrating,Chinese New Year is still too far.Hubby said ,it s new year lah!!!
How could I be so forgetful and lost track of time #?*#?
Anyway ,may this year brings good cheers and good health to you and mak cik.

Al-Manar said...

madam gold,
You had so many things on your mind, making you forgetful - the girl left behind, the coming SPM results, the new school, new Head, new colleagues etc etc.
Hope you will settle in quickly with exciting future ahead.
Pakcik

ARZ said...

Pak Chik,

Mine pales in comparison with Al-Manar's contents. It's yours that should go to print to be shared for generations ahead.

You will leave a legacy.

cikzaa said...

Dear Pakcik,
I hope & pray this year will be a better year for me, for you, for al-manar & for every one!

Al-Manar said...

ARZ
You are not comparing apple to apple, my friend. How about scratching each other's back? Then we both can go around merrily!
Pakcik

Al-Manar said...

Dear cikzaa,
Let us hope and pray so, not forgetting your dear sister and her son.
Pakcik

Anonymous said...

On the eve of new year, as other people were on the streets, waiting for the 2010 to come, I was alone in my room, thinking about my new semester. My last semester ended with me getting 3.06 for my GPA. It was far away from my target and I could not help but thinking about it all night. On the day after that, I went for my Friday prayer, and I was not really listening to the ‘kutbah’, as always, until the Imam said something that really grabbed my attention. “…jangan sesekali berputus asa dari rahmatKu…”. I don’t really know from what ‘surah’ this ‘ayat’ comes from, but these simple words were more than enough to wake me up. Along my journey, I may fall sometimes, but it does not matter, as no matter how many or how hard I fall, I should never give up. You had showed me the path, and it is up to me to go through all the way, until I reached my goal.

Thank you Pak Cik, and Happy New Year,

Aliff UTM

p/s: It had been a long time since the last time I wrote to you, I will try my best to keep on writing regularly, send my regard to Mak Cik,