I was checking an old email account which I used for my previous blog, which many of you who have been invited to join me here– have been a part of for years. Sieving through the barrage of advertisements and junk spams, I saw an email by a certain Bill, which I almost deleted, since many a times there have been more than one Bill trying to sell me Viagra and the likes of them. In it was this email:
I have been researching my family history, specifically my grandfather who lived for a time in Malay. He is mentioned several times in a book you wrote about in your blog in 2009.The book, is titled “Memoirs of a Menteri Besar Tan Sri Datuk Dr Mohamad Said– Early Days.“ I was hoping that if you still have the book if you could find some information for me.
Please let me know if this is possible and I will provide specific details to look for.
Thank you for your time.
Vancouver British Columbia
Hmm interesting. I suddenly woke up without the need of caffeine. I wrote back to him, asking him to specifically show me which blog entry in 2009 was that and he replied, almost immediately that it was the entry in which I read about that Negeri Sembilan Menteri Besar, Tan Sri Dr Mohammad Said, the boy who rose from adversity to political influence. Ah yes. That book. The one which one of my lecturers from Institute Terjemahan Negara Malaysia made my cohort read, and even got us copies of the book.
This Bill wanted to know if I still have the book, as parts of it contained some stories of his grandfather. If I have to overturn my house looking for the book, I would. And I would do it insya Allah when we are back here from our short trip home to the island.
I remember how, in last December’s Central Java trip where myself and my younger cousins–yang berderet, did a heritage trip to the village where our arwah yayi hailed from in Kendal, Semarang. 19 of us attempted to reconnect ourselves to our ancestral land, learnt about our family’s history, sat in the same house our arwah yayi was born in, read Surah Yasin at the graves of our great-grandparents and got to know our aunties/uncles/cousins. The very relatives whom previously, were just names in letters written in Javanese which none of us could understand. Now they are my FB contacts and we are in touch with one another’s lives on a daily, if not hourly basis. Hubby didn’t join us in that trip, but I remember while at the graves of my arwah buyot (greatgrandfather/greatgrandmother), who were buried side by side to each other, I sms-ed him and said, ” I am standing right where my history started. I wish I knew more about them”
So Bill, worry not. I will do all I can, to help you get to know yours.