Saturday, June 23, 2007


Naturally the countryside around our home town and locality would attract us to notice its development and uniqueness. During visits we would stop to take photos at whatever strikes us. Looking back they afford interesting vistas while enriching our perceptions of what color, beauty, tradition and tranquility can give us. We would like to share that with you appreciating that change may occur at any time. Tomorrow it may not be there anymore. If not caught on film, it is lost forever. We may never appreciate what has actually existed.There is no comparison to be made. That will be a tragedy isn't? So let's go on a short journey appreciating what enfolds.

Scene 1.0 This is an 'Angsana' (rain tree) ten yards from the gate into our house at Titi Gajah. With its huge foliage and yellow flowering blooms it gives a majestic view come April each year. We are grateful to past planners who had the wisdom to line the street with these trees. Many have fallen, victims of age. Yet the twenty odd numbers that have resisted the test of time continue to give shade and beauty as they have done for the last seventy years or more. Drive out of the city to the new airport at Alor Star you will see these sentinels by the side of the road stretched fortunately along a three kilometre route.

Scene 2.0 It is springtime in the city as the golden showers carpeted the streets. They fell on car roofs, buildings and people who walked underneath the trees. Other trees too flower at the same time and the riots of colors surely make the city a place to be visited at this time of the year. If only the present planners realize its potentials. Springtime here would be as attractive as in Kyoto.

Scene 2.1 A scene to tempt our perception of nature's beauty yet questioning our malady at destruction of the environment and pollution. This flowering tree was seen at Gurun Rest Area along the North-South Highway.

Scene 3.0 Now What's this? No doubt it's a man and his pet: a monkey. We see coconuts around too. The male 'beruk' a pedigree type has just plucked ripe coconuts from trees at the back of the house. It is a trained pet accomplished at plucking coconuts at the command of its owner. As a reward for its service, it got fresh coconut juice from Pak Din. It gulped with relish the coconut juice being thirsty and tired after the climb and what more with constant instructions by Pak Din. I was surprised that within a short time it was able to bring down more than eighty coconuts. Make no mistake only the ripe ones were plucked too. It would have taken an ordinary coconut climber a longer time and at a great risk to his life. Pak Din charged according to the number of trees climbed at the rate of five coconuts per tree.

Scene 4.0 Step out of the patio, and onto the grass patch. This scene I see every morning. It is wondrous to walk on the grass with the overnight dew wetting your feet. In May the fruit trees start to flower and later bare fruits . The 'rambutan' and mango trees in the compound also attract birds and squirrels that come to share the bounty. It has taken several years to have a scenario like this right at our door step. No need to go around searching for a resort ambiance. We have created it and now our duty is to preserve its tranquility.

Scene 5.0 Recycling this time comes full circle. My grand daughter Laila found the bright red and blue dress too captivating to take her eyes off it. My wife had earlier picked up the dress long worn by our daughter almost twenty plus years ago from a locker and lo and behold it adjusted perfectly on the young lady's body. All are happy. She got a new dress ( bought at Marks and Spencer Scotland 1984 ). Who would know that its ages old? Both grand-mother and daughter realised the benefits of keeping items and not to discard indiscriminately once they outgrow their usage. Grand dad recorded the situation live. Is it a surprise therefore to see the 'Bundles' getting customers into their outlets?

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