Gong Xi Fa Cai 2014

Happy Chinese New Year to all my Chinese readers and Happy Holidays to the rest!
According to the Chinese, it is also the year of the horse.

[source]

I like that picture because it sort of look like a horse version of me. Don't you think? No? Okay.

Usually, during CNY, Jhon would be back in Philippines for his yearly visit to take advantage of the long public holiday and for the past few years, it always falls nicely on his mom's birthday. Unfortunately, it does not this year but will head home 1 week after.

So for the first time in years, I have him for the CNY holidays. I am thinking for a day out trekking or just hanging out at the beach but guess what? He fell sick with flu and cough. =( Poor guy. In fact, I've never seen him this sick before.

So basically, I am rotting at home as I do every year and Jhon is hibernating with meds.

I hope everyone else had their days better spent than us.

Oh by the way, it's the last day of January! Time flew fast.

   

The Tok Kadi (Qadi) Issue

Tok Kadi is basically the man who is going to wed the bride and groom under Islamic Law. Granted, I initially did not put much thought in it. I didn't care who but just someone who is not long winded in his sermon or advise =p

I went to ROMM’s website to educate ourselves the steps needed and my, oh my, leceh jugak eh? I thought call the Tok Kadi, say “I CHOOSE YOU, TOK KADI!” ala Pokemon then done. I know naïve. Not to mention the "interview" needed which kinda made people nervous. More on that on another post yea?

Registration and paying $39 was no issue until I realized that if Jhon is denied with his Permanent Residence application, we got extra paperwork to do. Jhon has to get a letter from Philippines to confirm the marital status, if single (not more than 3 months from date of issuance). So we really hope everything will go smoothly whether with or without PR. We can do this! But please lah, that need permission from the government is little too much.

The other issue that I absent-mindedly forgot is that I need a Tok Kadi who is well-spoken in English. (Details, man! Don’t forget the details!) Jhon can understand a little bit of Malay but getting solemnized in Malay is out of the question. He has to fully understand what he is saying right? Not that i am saying some Tok Kadi can't speak English well but what I mean a Tok Kadi who can deliver in English as powerful in Malay. You know... ada kick sikit.

Another wonder I had was how an ‘Akad Nikah’ (solemnization) does sounds like in English? Does it sound weird? Does it have the same feeling and emotion when recited in Malay? Of course, I looked it up. The first time I heard it, I cried. *face palm* And they haven’t get to the main parts of the solemnization *double face palm* Maybe it was the way the guy talked or maybe the words he said, but it really touched me. That was many months ago and I misplaced the video.

So luck or fate might have it, as I was casually checking out potential videographers, I found another solemnization in English. Nice leh. I also managed to find a website that showcases all Tok Kadi and Naib Kadi in action, get clicking to MalayWeddingServices.

It's kinda hard finding videos of Akad Nikah in English but managed to snag a couple. I 'chope' Uztad Hassan Bin Salim (first video) kan or not? And he happens to leave nearby!

Sidenote: It's better to get Tok Kadi who lives nearby your solemnization site to avoid accidentally tardy Tok Kadi and it's just courtesy lah, poor thing, if they have to travel to each corner of Singapore.

Kadi Hassan Bin Salim



Unedited version


Kadi Mohammad Irwan Shah Bin Sudirman



Besides the Akad Nikah, my favorite part is when the groom recites the Taqlik/Taklik. As fun as the Akad Nikah (On lookers sometimes anticipate the failure of the groom like we like to watch F1 because we want to see a car crash) is, I love to listen to the groom recite his promise to his (by then) wife. I love it more when they say with feeling and sincerity instead taking it as an oral exam.

Taqlik which is more emotional based for me, is technically default terms of the marriage for which it can be dissolved when the wife complains to the Syariah court. The groom will declare and promise that he will not hurt her (or her properties), not giving her nafkah (means of sustainability) by him or the next of kin for 6 months (thus the amount of the Mahar) and leaving her for more than 6 months and in which the court finds true will decree that the marriage is dissolved by One Talak.

I told Jhon, he must recite it while looking at me with full sincerity. I obviously have issues when it comes to marriage because to what I am exposed to so it would mean a lot to me.

I just hope I won’t get too emotional and bawl my eyes out. I am going to look like I am forced to get married in my wedding photos/videos. Haha

Updated: 3 more Tok Kadi

Kadi Firdaus Bin Yahya



Kadi Syed Ahmad Bin Syed Mohamed



Kadi Muhammad Tarmizi Bin Abdul Wahid
[Some how I could not find his name in ROMM's tok kadi list. It was last updated on 2011 and video was uploaded on 2013. So..... ROMM, please update to avoid confusion. hehe]

   

Our Wedding has passed!
Check out our experience with Tok Kadi Hassan here.




The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 6

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 1, Part 2 , Part 3, Part 4 and Part 5.

So we were almost reaching the Terminal Bersepadu Selatan but the driver went to the wrong entrance so we had to make a little U-turn. We didn't get mad or anything because he was a talkative, nice guy and we had plenty of time before bus departure which was at 5.30pm.

The real drama started as soon as we were alighting and a midst of paying the driver. Out of sudden, a group of policemen appeared whistling and waving like crazy. Our driver told Bro that if the policemen asked, tell them he was our uncle while pushing away the money instructing my Bro to give him later. The driver in the end got cornered and questioned while we stood at the entrance confused.

Long story short, it turned out he didn't have a licence to taxi people with his minivan. -_- But nope, adventure not officially over yet.

After that, we checked in to get our tickets and had a late lunch at Pak Hailam Kopitiam. I tell ya, sedap lah! I had the Hotplate black pepper chicken rice (Chicken with rice not chicken rice as in nasi ayam k) and it was goooood.

Close to 5.30pm, reached the bus lobby for StarQistina Express and there was confusion. Everyone in the lobby was urged to take a bus whose license plate that was not according to our ticket. We were informed that that was a change of bus. It was no issue except that it was suddenly free seating when we had booked our seats! Of course, the bus was almost full and we barely could sit near each other. Syihab technically had a sit for himself (which was paid for by the way) but to avoid being separated, he sat on Kak Yana’s lap.

While Jhon and Bro tried to keep our bags in the bus storage, no one helped and mind you, there were 3 men manning the bus. Meanwhile, upstairs, Shibly had French fries in the bus. It was a last minute buy and it’s JUST French fries. The driver did warn Kak Yana while going up the bus and Kak Yana acknowledged. Fine, he won’t eat but keep lah since we JUST bought it.

Then while we were having a commotion on the seating arrangement, the driver confronted us AGAIN and this time, he was freaking rude!! He was literally nagging on how his bus is very clean and very proud of it. Bla bla bla.. on and on and I just went sarcastically, OKAY….OKAY!... I was truly pissed but I didn't want to embarrass myself with the passengers. I mean, it’s clear he was the asshole. At this point, Shibly was getting upset for being scolded.

NVM…. Then another asshole came! Telling the same thing! It’s like, we know! We won’t eat but it’s wasteful to throw it. Not only that, the driver came around again so we had 2 guys nagging but as soon as Bro and Jhon appeared behind them, asking what was the problem. Wah… became timid mice. It’s so obvious, sexist bastards too! They probably thought it’s just us ladies with kids, so they think they want to bully us. After all of us had settled, guess what? 1 guy approached Bro politely and quietly saying that they are having a 20 min pit stop just 5 FREAKING MINUTES after the departure and encouraged Shibly to eat the fries.

WTH? It was obviously a personal break and it’s wasting our time. Kak Yana said no and sarcastically said if they were not happy, please take the fries and throw it away. Since Bro was next to her, wah... quietly waved no and walked away. KNS. When we thought it could not get worst, this bus has it’s little stops for other passengers on its own rather than a trip straight to Singapore. This takes plenty of time okay? Then, ¾ of the trip, we were even asked to change bus to the actual bus we were supposed to take in the first place!

We estimated to be at Woodlands checkpoint at most 10pm but do you know what time we reached? Almost 12 midnight! Mind you, we purposely took an earlier departure so we can reach home before 12am because Kak Yana and Jhon has to work the next day. But nope! Oh, and the 2nd bus ride was stinky and the 1st bus was not THAT clean okay. -_-

Nonetheless! Despite the annoying end, we absolutely love the trip. I wish we can go again so I can buy more comfy pajama pants and baju kurung. I doubt we will have the presidential suite upgrade again but we are DEFINITELY not riding with StarQistina lembab sexist tak guna Express.

Can you imagine? We just spent SGD125 for travel and accommodation. Put aside the worst bus ride, it was worth it x5000. Come on, paying MYR390 for a MYR4,000 suite. Need I say more?

This is the most wordy post so I shall add photos that I didn't post because it’s not very flattering in some ways. I put it in GIF so you guess can’t stare in detail okay? Lol



And finally, thanks again to Kak Yana for initiating this trip and thank you fellow readers for following up my long winded Shah Alam stories. I officially end now.

Knocks gavel.

   

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 5

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

I am at Part 5! I promise I am almost done and for those has followed the story thus far, well done, man!
                
So here is the deal, our check out time was at 12pm and obviously, we would spend more than 2 hours at Pasar Tani. We had already checked how much we had to pay for late checkout and it was SGD$150. Can you imagine? SGD$150 for an extra day for a Presidential suite? (reason why in part 2) Like this I want to extend for a few more days lah!

We had planned to just extend the Presidential suite and check out the Executive suite. Unfortunately, we had a brain fart and didn't think of checking out before heading out to Pasar Tani just in case we over spent our time in Pasar Tani and had to fork out extra SGD$150 for the other room. Thankfully, we reached the hotel at 12.30pm and the concierge gave us until 1pm to check out.

As soon as we reached our rooms, Jhon and I basically dumped all our stuff including Mak’s into the other suite. Thank God for conjoined rooms and within 15 minutes (we took our time), we checked out.

We had 3 hours to spare but all of us had a head start in packing. I didn't do much of the packing because Jhon is quite anal retentive in packing (even if it’s my bag) so I let him do it. All I can say is that I was glad I brought an extra hand carry bag for bought items.

After packing, we all cleaned up, take our showers (shower in the Presidential suite is so syiok!) and shared lunch. We were tired but we had smiles on our faces and soaking in the suite as much as possible. It was sad indeed to leave the place. When will we ever get this opportunity again?

Maybe if I request for a honeymoon upgrade when I get married. Haha

Anyways, 3pm struck and we checked out. This time, we were clever already; Kak Yana had asked the concierge the night before to book a cab for us today. We got ourselves a minivan to squeeze everyone and bags in.

But first… Final photos before officially leaving the hotel. Group photo not that fantastic but that’s the best photo. Haha





And that was the end of the photos taken that day. Mr Jhon has retired for the trip and we also thought it would be a normal trip home anyways but it was not!
I told you, this trip has a lot of story-mory.

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 1Part 2 , Part 3Part 4 and Part 5.

   

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 4

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.

Rise and Shine! I was not part of the discussion on the wake up call the next day so I only had the jist of it. Apparently, we were supposed to wake up about 6am so that we can leave for Pasar Tani at 7.30am because it gets crowded at 8am. But Jhon and I over slept. -_-

We did woke up but groggily went back to sleep and Mom didn't wake us up after she took her shower. All was not lost though. We quickly got ready and had our breakfast.


We went out of the hotel thinking it would be easy to get a taxi but no such luck. So bro went to ask the concierge to call a cab for us but no driver replied in fact, the concierge didn't keep us updated while we were waiting outside. -_- But we managed to entertain ourselves with photo taking. =p





Eventually, Kak yana used an app (MyTeksi) to also try to book a cab. Long story short, we got 1 from the app, 1 from the hotel and all of us met at Pasar Tani.

By the time we reached Pasar Tani, it was after 8am and it was definitely crowded. It was not that bad because there was still plenty of room to walk around and wait around.

Everything was cheap-cheap and indeed, they have everything although 70% of the items sold were headscarves and female clothes. Don’t fear men, there were a good amount of T-shirts, bags, shoes to go crazy with.




Mak definitely went ‘tudung’ crazy, kak yana mostly kid’s outfit crazy while Jhon and Bro did mostly the waiting and babysitting game as per normal. =P Part and parcel of shopping with shopaholics yea? Lol As for me, I am in between. Checking out the stalls rather quickly and then returning to the ‘check point’. I managed to snag a dress (that turned out didn’t compliment my body), 2 pajama pants and a T-shirt.


 I look so serious and matured here with happy Shibly and his Minion balloon but I had my own Ultraman balloon hidden behind his. haha



With just 60% of Pasar Tani conquered, we surrendered. Mostly because of the noon heat as it drained our energy quite fast. How hot did it get? My bro had a sun burn on his shoulders the next day. We tried walking out to find cabs but we went out to the wrong side. Since there was shelter, we took the opportunity to cool down and repacked our bought items.



Bro asked for directions and it turned out we had to walk 30 minutes in the opposite direction. As soon as we crossed the road, we managed to get 2 cabs at once and off we went to our suite. Even equipped with water bottles and bought drinks, we were still dehydrated.

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 1Part 2 , Part 3Part 4 and Part 5.

   

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 3

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 1 and Part 2

It’s part 3 and I am just about to finish our first day in Shah Alam. Just a heads up, this post is photo heavy. Haha So after lunch, we got ready to go out. Now that we were officially freshen up, photo taking time!




Pardon me as I 'syiok sendiri' for a while










We went out for a 10 minute walk to SACC mall which was opposite the nolow… Quality Hotel. This mall was pretty decent. It has range of all kinds of modern shops and had a Bonia sale in the middle of the mall so Mak scoop up a pair of shoes. We didn’t buy many items there mostly because we were saving up for Pasar Tani.






We went up about 3 levels and left for Komplex PKNS Shah Alam next door. This is mall was completely different from SACC mall. It sells more Malay/Islamic items such as baju kurung, jubbah, telekong, tudung etc. The prices were quite cheap too. One thing we didn’t realize was how huge the mall was. When we thought we had ventured the mall, there was more.




We bought a few more items and ended the day at an open food stall area right outside the mall for dinner. Here's our tired faces when we just went out for 4+hours. Lol Can’t handle the adventure in just 1 day. I guess. Food was surprisingly not nice. =(




Even before we had reached our presidential suite (cheh cheh), I had already planned to take a dip into the Jacuzzi. My feet was aching from walking from wee morning at Shah Alam, walking back and forth countless of times in the suite just to comprehend the room and walking around the mall. I dropped my stuff and got ready for a hot and relaxing dip.


IT.WAS.AMAZING. I had set the temperature hot and started the bubbles. Fwar.. Life was good. Jhon joined a few minutes later and I coerced my mom to dip her feet. She didn't’t bring any swimwear and didn't see the big deal. -_-

When she had dipped her feet, she didn't’t want to move. That was until the kids joined and splashed all over so she had to leave. =( Meanwhile, we played with the naked kids lah. Lol



After an hour or more, we decided to leave and clean up for the day. I really didn't want to leave but it was getting late and we were having and early start. Remember how I mentioned when the room is quiet and we can hear Quran recitations and azan from the Blue Mosque? It was so heavenly to hear it after a tiring day while lying down on an uber comfortable king sized bed. It was like a spiritual lullaby that beats any recording I tend to listen to.


The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 1Part 2 , Part 3Part 4 and Part 5.

   

The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 2


We walked back to Grand Blue Wave Hotel to check in yet again. This time, the hotel was packed with Elken members and guests for a wedding. These are faces of tired people.



When Kak Yana and bro tried to check in, the concierge lady said that there was no room available and we should wait until 3pm. Kak Yana insisted that they promise us that we can definitely check in at 3pm because we have been waiting since 4am. While pointing out in our email copy that there was a clear note that we were checking in early. 

She can’t. So, she gave us a free upgrade to make up for the hassle. Our 2 Deluxe Suites to an Executive Deluxe Suite that is joined to a PRESIDENTIAL SUITE worth $4,000 per night!

At first we were confused on the excitement of the lady. She was so happy and almost jumping for joy for us. We knew it was a great upgrade but I guess we didn't realize how beautiful and luxurious a Presidential Suite was until we entered the room.

You know the reactions of families in Extreme house makeovers? We did exactly that. We screamed and ran all over the Presidential suite. It was AMAZING!  

There was a kitchen, a meeting room for 18 pax, a bar top, guest toilet, large living room with a desk that has a fax machine, a ridiculously big bedroom with a walk in closet, vanity room and a bathroom with separate shower and toilet with a Jacuzzi. 
Now try saying that in 1 breath. 










The Executive deluxe suite was great too. It was spacious with a small walk in closet. Albeit, compared to the Presidential suite, it seem common but it was really spacious and comfortable. Especially the King sized bed that managed to fit 3 of us comfortably. I wanted to bring that bed home.


Both rooms has a beautiful view of Masjid Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah also famously known as the Blue Mosque and since this room is the quietest, I can hear every prayer call and Quran recitations from the mosque. It was very calming and beautiful. 


Initially, we had intended to just get settle in and go out to nearby malls but the suite was so beautiful and comfortable, we decided to have our late lunch and went out later. We ordered room service and had the server place the food in the meeting room. I later arranged the food in way how rich people eat in a big table; far apart. Lol 


Food was fantastic. We loved the Ribeye burger, Kway teow goreng, Burger steak and Fish and chips. As for the Steak with an Asian twist was a fail.


It was fun at first but it was definitely lonely with lack of physical bonding and it’s so hard to share food. Haha I mean, look at this, it's like we were strangers. It was definitely an experience to take note and remember. 


Anyways, look who had a taste of the jazuzzi first? lol And don't worry, Syihab was fine. He was caught in the moment when he was dipping his face in the water. This is from the boy who is afraid of swimming pools. Someone please explain. haha


The Amazing 2D1N Shah Alam Vacation Part 1Part 2 , Part 3Part 4 and Part 5.