Saturday, April 14, 2018

Kait


Hari ini buku kait ini datang dari Bristol, Gloucester, England. Tempah online dari Amazon. Harga asalnya GBP20 tapi dijual murah kurang GBP4. Sudah lama tertinggal kegemaran ini. 30 tahun dulu pernah kait baju kardigan dan sweater. Rasanya kalau tidak balik semula mengait, mungkin akan terlupa cara-cara memegang kayu pengait. Lagi pun mengait sangat mendamaikan hati saya. Waktu celah-celah tulisan yang memerah fikiran, mengait sangat melegakan kepala. Itulah saya mula mengait semula.


Ini pohon terung pipit. Pohon ini tubuh liar di sisi jalan besar. Ia sedang berbunga. Saya kata apabila sudah berbuah nanti, akan datang petik buah-buahnya. Tapi diberitahu hanya burung-burung saja makan buah terung pipit ini. Tidaklah, buah terung ini boleh buat ulam makan dengan nasi, saya pula nyatakan. Orang itu ketawa besar seperti saya berkata perkara pelik.
Saya teringat seorang kawan di Singapore mengadu yang pembantu di rumahnya kata kangkung hanya digunakan untuk makanan babi di kampungnya. Orang Singapura makan kangkung tapi untuk orang dia, sayur itu diberi kepada babi.
Adakah perbezaan ini menunjukkan kelainan taraf hidup pada kedua-dua bangsa ini?
Saya tidak pasti.


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Thursday, April 12, 2018

Penjualan novel

Hari ini saya terima surat pemberitahu darihal pembayaran royalti daripada penerbit novel saya. Novel itu terbitnya 7 tahun lalu. Pada saya pengukur sebuah novel itu yang masih menunjukkan ia diminati pembaca adalah selepas 10 tahun. Jika sesudah 10 tahun, ia masih dicari pembaca bermakna novel itu berjaya menakah ruang sastera yang banyak penghalangnya waktu ini.

Saya ingin menceritakan sebuat anekdot yang terjadi hari ini.
Selepas sauna di kolam panas hari ini, di depan cermin besar, seorang perempuan Jepun, saya rasa dalam lingkungan 75 tahun bercerita tentang kepayahan kehidupannya. Sudahlah payah, dia terpaksa menjaga cucu-cucunya yang dalam peringkat sekolah rendah. Katanya pinggang sakit, kaki letih apabila banyak bergerak. Saya tanya adakah dia berkerja. Jawabnya dia berkerja sebagai heruppa (helper). Helper adalah pembantu (kerja) rumah.
Sakit2 begini seharusnya kamu yang perlu heruppa, kata saya.
Dia minta saya teka umurnya. Terus terang tanpa berfikir lagi, saya kata 75.
Alamak, kamu teka tepat. Tak tahu nak suka atau tidak, tak tahu memuji atau tidak selepas mendengar jawapannya itu.
Patutnya kamu teka 65.
Adei, sebenarnya saya lihat dia dalam 80 tahun tapi bagi muka beri 75. Itupun markah kasihan.
Marah pula dia.
Ada orang kata beruk kah, monyet kah, itu tekaan kita. Kita berhak ke atas tekaan kita.
Itu saja anedot kali ini.

*****

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Fobia glemer



Hati ini tidak menentu apabila terima makluman daripada Google bahawa gambar-gambar kembara dirujuk 10,000 kali. Apakah itu nilai kiraan orang glemer (glamour)? Tapi kalau disiasat lagi, rasanya orang glemer menerima rujukan hingga bermilion-million.
Jadi dengan perasaan ini, rasanya tidaklah perlu saya risaukan penyataan dari Google ini.

Tak perlu jadi glemer.

*****

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Haiku Tahun Baharu Cina


Apabila penuntut berjaya, saya tumpang bahagia. Haiku yang bertemakan Tahun Baharu Cina terbit di Dewan Budaya (bil. 2).
Puan Amirah Syazwani (nama Facebook). Tahniah.

Komen saya : Tema keseluruhan haiku ini berpusing pada kigo Tahun Baharu Cina. Kigo ini diselitkan di baris 2 untuk cukupkan suku kata. Budaya Cina diketengahkan dalam haiku ini dan kegiatan2 perayaan ini dinyatakan sebagai budaya orang Cina. Klimaks haiku ini terdapat pada rangkap akhir dengan sorakan "Malaysiaku". Satu saja perkataan ini sudah menggambarkan perpaduan rakyat Malaysia yang berdamai dalam berbilang kaum menyambut bersama percutian ini.
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Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Osaka trip


When my first daughter and her family visited us this January 2018 (12-19), I went along with them to visit my second daughter's family in Osaka. After a short stay with us in Oct and Nov.2017, my second daughter moved to Osaka. So, this would be our first visit to her in Osaka.
One thing about Osaka now is that it is crowded with tourist from Korea, China and other Asians countries, that sometimes I wonder if Osaka is still in Japan.
Those famous eating places and frequented places in Osaka do not look like the typical street of Japan anymore. I see trash littering everywhere and the bad odour from public toilets are getting intolerable. 
But, good thing these unwanted conditions are not found in public housing areas where tourists do not tramp around.
Anyway, I managed to grab some delicious dishes like their famous sea crab, beef sukiyaki and beef shabu-shabu. I'm quite surprised at the numerous eating place that caters to the Muslim customers that sprang up the last 5 years in Osaka. Even at Kansai Airport, there are several eating places that offer Halal menu.
It was sheer happiness to have my kids and grandkids gathered together at the same time and place. 
I have a special tune that just flows from my mouth whenever I'm with my grandkids.
I will sing it like "sayang, sayang. Yang sayang. Yang sayang, sayang."
My last grandchild imitate me when he was alone at home after I left his house.




Before I went to Osaka the cherry tree on my front porch was about 20% in bloom.



After coming home, it is about 90% blooming. (image below). 22 Jan 2018.




*****

Thursday, January 04, 2018

Totto-chan


Towards the last three months of 2017, I've glued myself to the telly every afternoon between 12.30 pm to 12.45 pm. After Kuroyanagi Tetsuko afternoon talk show, it's the daily drama Totto-chan.
Kuroyanagi Tetsuko is the writer of Madogiwa no Totto-Chan or the English translated version The girl by the window.


The daily drama is about Totto-Chan which is not written in the book. Actually, it is a biography of Kuroyanagi Tetsuko (the writer). It started with the romantic love story of Totto-chan parents. The meeting of her father (a violinist) and her mother (a chorus singer). Totto-chan's mother was disowned by her family for marrying a violinist. How the couple go through a poor living condition as the violinist husband is not paid for playing in concert. Totto-Chan is born as a talkative and inquisitive girl. In fact, she was suspected of having a light autism syndrome but at that age, the medical condition in Japan has still not been able to recognise such malady.
The book started when Totto-Chan had to change to Tomoe School (the classroom in a train coach). The book did not get into how Totto-Chan's life changed during the WW2. Her father was called up by the military. Left hungry and undefended with her mother in war-tormented Tokyo, the mother decided to move to the countryside to get away from the bombings.
When the war was declared over, they moved back to Tokyo. Coming back from the war, the father continued as a violinist.
Totto-Chan took up an interview with NHK (Japan's television company) and successfully passed through. Within a couple of years, she becomes a celebrated tv personality. When she changed to another tv company, she is given a slot every lunchtime to interview other celebrities.
She had a romantic link with a pianist from French. She rejected his marriage proposal as she wants to concentrate on her tv career. They meet secretly at every chance when both are out of work obligations.
You may be wondering if they get married at last, but I'm a cruel person. AM NOT TELLING ~la~la~la~
Anyway, what you read in that small book is only a small part of her life. By the way, Kuroyanagi Tetsuko is still doing the talk show daily with TV Asahi now.
(4 Jan. 2018).
Originally Kuroyanagi was not a writer. She started her career as an actress. Upon insistent from her pianist lover to write about her life at the school in the train coach, she agreed to write. The book Madogiwa no Totto-Chan became instant bestsellers at that time. Even now the bookshops all over Japan still stock it.

Good thing I followed the drama daily for 3 months.

This is the link to the drama and the singer who wrote and sing for the theme song of the drama. Kuroyanagi Tetsuko keeps her onion hairstyle since she started the talk show 60 years ago.
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZsmdHIumrY
*****

Monday, December 25, 2017

Japanese Book Scene.




1.  Saw this movie on Christmas Eve 2017. Left a lasting impact on my mind after watching it. A novella by Matsumoto Seicho called Kichiku. (The Demon).


Having no more financial support from her lover, the man's mistress dumped their 3 kids at his home. Out of her hatred for the mistress, the man's wife ordered him to kill off the kids one by one. The anguish of a man planning to kill his own children is mentally sickening. The book and movie are only in Japanese.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Demon_(1978_film)





This book was written 80 years ago. To attract young readers, they made it into a manga. Recently it has become a best seller.

君たちのどう生きるか Kamu hidup bagaimana?

*****