Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Tekanan Sistem Pendidikan...

Ramadhan dan Syawal dah berlalu. La ni masuk Zulkaedah. Tak lama lagi masuk pulak Zulhijjah. Mood Raya Haji pulak untuk mereka yang sambut or take part dalam majlis korban di surau-surau dan masjid. 

Tapi buat masa ni tengah season mood exam especially untuk student UPSR. The big day will be on 5th September which is lagi 2-3 minggu. Parents dah mula menggelabah tapi students masih nampak cool, at least on the surface nampak muka tenang. 

Lately memang trend parents gelabah bila anak dah nak sit exam memang agak obvious. Expectation parents agak tinggi. Gelabah is one thing, the worse part is panic mode attack mula lah semua orang kena tempias. Kelas tambahan sekolah kena pressure, cikgu tuisyen dan pusat tuisyen pun kena sekali. Fenomena dah macam solat Tarawih cuma penuh di hujung-hujung dah nak dekat exam instead of penuh dari mula.

Though people duk bicara that UPSR is not the end of the world, and so does PT3 nanti tapi mood dan climate exam dia memang lain macam. Punyalah caring parents ni. Adakah sebab susah sangat silibus UPSR ni? Adakah sebab susah sangat soalan-soalan UPSR ni especially yang melibatkan KBAT tu?

Kalau hang tanya aku, memang SUSAH! Aku pun tak tau apa yang kementerian duk letak level tinggi sangat scale pendidikan budak sekolah rendah ni sampaikan Matematik Darjah 4 dah kena pandai kira diskaun 10% beli baju di kedai. Dan ada juga soalan yang sampaikan melibatkan production line kilang kek yang mensasarkan target pengeluaran sebulan!

Aku tau memang ada ramai budak cerdik pandai di Malaysia ni. Tapi pernahkah yang membuat polisi ni kaji tentang jumlah pelajar yang dalam tahap average? Ni lah level yang paling ramai. Nampak gaya proses segrigasi dah bermula sejak di bangku sekolah lagi. Apakah matlamat mereka?

Mereka akan melahirkan golongan bijak pandai tapi hanyalah golongan bijak pandai yang cuma mampu menjawap soalan exam. Akhlak, adab, disiplin all gone. Zero. Bijak pandai dalam berbicara tapi adab berbicara takde. Bijak dalam bina karangan atau soalan matematik yang kompleks tapi keluar aje sekolah selamba buang sampah tanpa rasa bersalah tentang penjagaan akhlak yang bagus. Boleh jawap soalan UPSR dengan cemerlang tapi displin masa bila berjanji langsung takde.

Adakah ini semua yang dikejar? Bila tekanan untuk memenuhi keperluan sistem akademik semakin dirasai oleh parents, maka segala didikan dan bimbingan akhlak, adab, disiplin dan hormat yang sepatutnya dipikul oleh parents sendiri terpaksa diabaikan. Sebab parents sibuk sangat nak anak tu dapat straight A.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Was that a LSD?

When there were no upcoming event, I became lazy to run on weekday mornings as I did before. There was simply no motivation. I just wait for weekends. The recent weekend was not as interesting as the last two, hence I had to push myself at least for something to sweat about.

My other half had plans to spend the morning in Putrajaya with her siblings, which includes breakfast and breeze walking by the lake. I on the other hand must arrange for another plan at the same venue. I brought along my running shoes and the rest of the attire.

For motivation, I fixed a mission, to test a new running application I downloaded on my phone. Yes, I know I am kind of not-up-to-date despite the existence of the apps many moons ago. I'm trying to inspire myself here.

It was the Runkeeper apps. I still remember having to use Endomondo and Daily Miles. Perhaps this one had some twicks for improvement. 

I started from Monumen Alaf Baru, the torpedo shape structure and cruise my slow pace along the lake taking me behind the Tuanku Mizan Mosque, the Putrajaya Flora Fest venue towards the bridge before PICC.

The yellow concrete pavement was hard on my feet, hence I had to carefully pounce them in order to avoid any reasons to ditch the run. There were many recreation cyclists both families and small groups that I came across. Only a handful of runners. Once in a while I came across the 100 Plus Outrunner directional signage, which will take place that evening. I thought that the lanes could be a bit narrow to cater for the run.

I crossed under the bridge and ran to other side only to find a more secluded place though it seemed like more nice place to run and cycle due to the absence of traffic. But, I decided to turn back and continue my way back while the sun started stinging my back.

It was a great run and the humidity simply threw in buckets of sweat after the run.

Runkeeper seemed OK for the first time using it. Though I found some glitches like inconsistencies recording the current running pace, but I don't mind. I might try it during the next run.

See how slow I am now? Yes, I still enjoy running

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Hulu Langat Trail Run & MPAJ Ampang Hill Trail Challenge

Yes. You read it right. I was on the trail...and running, and participating some more. I guess the smell of forest floor lead me back into the trail when weekend comes.

The Hulu Langat Trail Run was never in my list. As usual, with Salomon and the like of branding sponsorship, event like this sells like 'pisang goreng panas' in minutes, despite the steep entry fee. I've been missing the scenario of running event and expensive entry fee. It never did gone. It is blooming profitably with more health conscious minded people participating. So are the sports shops. Expanding and opening more with more sports brands coming in. 

I didn't register for it. The opportunity just flew in when a friend decided to skip and pass his slot to me. It was a great idea to run it, but I realised I wanted more.

I seldom heard of Hulu Langat holding a trail run besides the ultra marathon thing which is basically a road run. Adding to the rareness. the venue itself, IKBN together with the support by the local council was kind of hard to digest. Anyway, the place provided a great playground.

The early morning traffic was bad heading towards IKBN, especially on Sunday. I heard that they closed the registration for both 10km and 16km with a total of up to 3000 runners. No wonder that Hulu Langat road was packed. I rode my motorbike, hence no traffic difficulty.

I found myself simply weird around the crowd. The atmosphere that I left for quite a long time. Warm ups, stretch and chats while the deejay tuning in the atmosphere. And not a single familiar face except for my usual running friends that came together.

Moments later I was between runners being flagged off. The 16K crowd was released first followed by the 10K, both were massive.

We had tarmac, followed by with trails through small plots of orchards, forest and plantations. Interconnected by small 'kampung' roads in between houses, we reached into more trails before ending back at IKBN.

I had a mixture of running and hiking, especially through inclines. However, the 10K may seemed some what endless when the legs felt weak. Luckily they had three river crossings, so we had to splash splosh our way back.

I think I clocked somewhere slightly above an hour. No, I didn't quite monitor my time because I don't have a running or a heart rate monitor anymore. I ditched them ions ago. I had fun instead and enjoyed the breakfast meal after the run while waiting friends finishing.

A week after, I totally forgot that I have registered for the Ampang Hill Trail Challenge. Whilst planning for weekend stuff, a friend reminded me of the event which we have registered under the free slots weeks ago. Great.

It was held at Bukit Indah, Ampang. This time the crowd was way much smaller. Only limited to 300 participants. I started observing and noticed that familiar faces from old running times started emerging into the scene. And I can say that these individuals were legends during their time. It felt like a small running get together. However, I didn't expect that the subsequent challenges awaits with curses.

Bukit Indah are known for it's mountain bike trail. A man made and maintained. Nice with soft rolls and switchbacks. We ran here for the first section. Then we left for the tarmac which I felt bored of until we reached Kelab Darul Ehsan. The hill there was simply terrible, though it was not as ugly as other road running hills but it was simply boring.

We entered another trail but too bad we can't run it due to the super steep staircase. Two hills together. There was a lake or they say used to be a reservoir at the top. Nice place.

The rest of the trail was running downhill but still, it was too steep to gain speed. We came back to a tarmac before finishing at the mountain bike trail head again.

The run clocked almost 9K and I was never bothered how did I performed, but I survived and had fun. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Gunung Semangko - Mission Abort

This project kicked-off almost 2 months after Kinabalu. Should be well rested now, though the craving for high altitude air keeps on coming. Until a friend agreed to guide us, but cramping the normal 3 days 2 nights hike into 2 days 2 nights (first night at a mosque). Until halfway into the trail, we thought this could be slightly an ambitious project.

I can see that it is going to be a tough hike. The distance and the undulating terrain. Almost similar the distance between Pine Tree trail head to Twin Peak, but with more abandoned trails. Still, it follows the Selangor-Pahang border where one can always fine the boundary stones throughout the ridge.

I had a glimpse of the trail head from Twin Peak from my previous hike. The descending was super steep and slippery from loose pebbles at the beginning and endless of slippery dry leaves trail testing your shoes'  grip. The climbing back was never easy either.

19 of us which included 4 kids (two are mine) and 3 teenagers. We left home at 11.00 p.m. and headed straight to Fraser Hill. The Friday night traffic was pretty bad though it was already late. We reached Fraser Hill somewhere at 1.00 a.m. and as usual, chilling. The mosque was our official stay for the night, and so were a few more groups which we presumed hikers as well.

My kids and I chose a tiny spot at the veranda which we thought it was better to occupy just the outside of the main praying hall. Everyone snugged into their sleeping bags and dozed off into the chilling night.

We were awoken by the generous melodies of mobile phones' alarm all over the mosque. Then followed by the azan.

A quick breakfast, white rice and black pepper chicken, together with a few more pot lucks, we were fueled up for the task. We left the trail head somewhere around 7.30 a.m. And there were at least two groups started off around the same time, but perhaps only up to Twin Peak.

We managed to reach Twin Peak at 11.30 a.m. for a quick lunch. A final check and assessment by our guide for every one's condition before proceeding. The first challenge was descending quite a steep terrain. Slippery as well due to loose gravels. Then it goes further down with no roots to place our steps but only slippery dry leaves. With heavy rucksacks, I don't dare take any risk of running down this.

We hit a dry creak at the bottom. Very bottom. Then we climbed steep up again. And this routine continued on for a few more until we reached a junction. There's a simple laminated sign showing the direction to Gunung Semangko, turning left. This juncture may be a bit tricky when coming back since the sign only welcome hikers coming in. Be careful.

The trail that continued provided plentiful of more ups and downs through shrubs, fallen trees and the idea of getting to Kem Sungai Merah, which is supposed to be a low lying area with a river was never seemed possible. Maybe! The river flows against the gravity and up towards the peak of a mountain. Our minds started became clouded by fatigue and boredom.

Due to the lack of drive, energy and perhaps boredom, we only managed to reach Kem Sungai Merah at almost 4.30 p.m., which was a mere 4 hours from Twin Peak. We overshot the so called 'ambitious' target.

Kem Sungai Merah have a few campsites. The closest to the river is down right from the main trail. The other two lies just next to the trail, which are larger that can snugged up to 30 person per night. The one by the river is smaller and can cater up to 15 person, but we really had to squeeze between trees to piece together our fly sheets, hammocks and some single man tent.

We feasted like mad. Every bit of food in our bags were taken out and cooked and served. The idea of continuing onward to the peak Gunung Semangko almost disappeared together with the clouds of smoke from our stoves. We were more excited to be there instead of attempting the peak.

At 6.00 p.m. teenagers started to be a bit anxiety. They urged the guides to lead them to the peak. The peak trail will easily take 3 hours in day light. At pitch black night, that could be double. They left for the peak minutes after a quick light preparation.

The rest of the night was spent nice and cozy under our tents upon cups and cups of coffee. It was so nostalgic. I really missed the moment many years ago. We dozed off into our sleeping bags when there were no more gossips to share, I think it was still 10.00. It gets colder into the night. We were glad it didn't rain.

Later in the morning, we were told that the peak attempt was a no go. They found the trail to be difficult and the night was not helping either. They turned back after an hour and decided to ditch the idea.

We were glad that they decided that way, or else they will lost a lot of sleeping hours and the hike back to the trail head will become tougher.

The hike back took almost the same time though it felt a bit easier or perhaps familiar. We managed to enjoy the hike as compared to the day before. A quick lunch at Twin Peak and crawling our way back to the trail head. More weekend hikers hiking in to Twin Peak as we exited.

Mishaps did happen before where hikers lost their way through the maze of trails around Fraser Hill. A few cases did hit the news. There are lots of factors contributed to mishaps in hiking such as improper planning, fatigue, insufficient hydration and hiking essentials.

We came across a group on our way out. It was already 3.00 p.m. and they were no where half way to Twin Peak. They only had a bottle of 1.5 liter of hydration to share among 4 of them, no other food, no torch light which proudly stated they have their phones. Simply hipsters.

Final climb to Pine Tree Peak

One of the many interesting stops, the huge tree

Twin Peak

Masjid Fraser Hill check-in

Twin Peak. One of those peak behind is probably Semangko

The trail head

Bunga Semangko...?

Mountain range from Pine Tree peak

One of the state boundary stones

Friday, March 18, 2016

Smart Study Workshop for Kids

It is in the middle of a week school break, which most prefer to go for a long escape back to hometown or attending weddings. But some prefer to stay locally enjoying the deserted traffic and chilling indoors from the escalating heat all over the country.

A two day Study Smart Workshop was organised at our Surau Al-Ansar for level 2 primary kids. All 30 of them from almost the same school. We invited facilitators and motivators to address and share the workshop modules for the kids targeting them to at least gain some brain planning for their studies.

We had modules such as:
  • Ta'aruf (know yourself and your friends)
  • Time management
  • Focus and focus
  • i-Smart
  • Mind mapping
  • Self potential
It was fun and sometimes a bit stressful when audience became restless due to boring stuff. Hence, we had to continuously making every session an interesting one. Not easy I tell you. We ended each day exhausted. I wonder how daycare and nursery operators keep their stamina?

However, the fun and drive doesn't come together without passion. Me myself have not discovered this personal potential on handling sessions for kids until this event. My other half obviously had everything hands on due to everyday tasks and challenges in the field.

Kids seemed happy and hopefully they get what was taught and shared.


More anxiety

Mini Poster & Event Schedule

Girls on task

Jokers & actors

Playing the stock broker game

Dhuha with Jemaah

The bunch


Qoilullah before Zohor

I want to a ...! And applause by friends

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Gerhana Matahari (Sun Eclipse) 9.3.2016

Been hearing about this a few days ago and shared messages immensely kept pouring in yesterday. Just a quick glance on a few photos for information. Basically, lebai Google explains like this...

Malaysia had the partial eclipse unlike Indonesia

I was at the clinic for my second physio this morning when the phenomena happened. Whilst waiting, I came across this graphic about the sun eclipse sunnah prayer. Good 'connection' with Allah during this unique phenomena. 

Next eclipse will be on 26 December 2019.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Fisioterapi (Physiotherapy)

Fisio atau in english it spells 'physio'. My first experience. It may sound like things you might want to avoid because most commonly it involves patients. Orang sakit. Kalau tak nak sakit, please avoid injury. No it is not something that you do to make you stronger from current state, unless you are...again, a patient.

Lebai Google explains

The sprain ankle that I suffered from Mt. Kinabalu never did fully recover. I can still feel the tingling pain when some force or abrupt load applied. Yesterday morning, with a bucket of anxiety I attempted a slow jog. My legs wobbled. The ankles seemed unstable at every tiny pounding. This can't be right. I tried adjusting my running gait but still, it doesn't feel right. Even my posture wasn't right. I felt lousy.

I went to the clinic for advise. The doctor suggested an x-ray procedure, just to ensure my bones are fine. The result came out good. Alhamdulillah. Hence, she advised for a physiotherapy. All four sessions of it, everyday. Hmmm...that's interesting. At least it can work out something fast for my next outdoor trip. I hope.

The session started this morning. The place is a combination of a small gym or yoga area and some rooms with curtains. A therapist conducted a Sonotron procedure for a few minutes. She explained that it emits a purple color wave that will be absorbed by the affected tissues which eventually helps the recovery. It may or may not work for some people.

The next procedure was soothing. She strapped my ankle with two pads of electrodes and let the electric waves did the massaging for twenty minutes. I could have dozed away if the session lasted longer. 

My kind of ankle sprain. Twisted sisters
Then she taught me a few resistance work outs that helps strengthen my calves. These muscles are inter-related. With a few damaged ones, the rest of the muscles may have to work harder to keep the system in balance. No wonder I felt pain in both my heels every morning upon waking up. These muscles are also taking the extra stress. And you can figure out how does these works if an overweight figure suffered the same thing.

That figure it out. Now I have to schedule a daily routine, and yes she did suggested an ankle guard to reduce the stress on the ankle from regular movements. I hope I can survive these for Gunung Semangkuk.

No idea how bad it is, but this picture scares the hell out of me

Monday, March 7, 2016

Apa Aku Buat Hari Tu...?

Gegaran dan desakan untuk terus mencari kasut trail running menghantui aku. Memandangkan Projek Mendaki Gunung Semangkuk pada minggu ke-3 bulan ni, aku dah tak sanggup nak pakai Salomon tu. Tambahan lagi kami dijangka akan menghabiskan masa trekking dengan average 8-12 jam untuk both days. Maka, amatlah penting sekali kaki aku disarungkan ke dalam sepasang kasut yang sangat selesa bagi mengelakkan pemberontakan di luar kawalan.

Aku dah mengalami gejolak jiwa kacau hampir kronik. Jumaat pagi aku ke Mitsui, Sepang. Ini yang best jadi boss dan kuli dalam masa yang sama, takde sesiapa kisah. Harapan aku ke Mitsui ialah depa mungkin dah restock kasut sejak my last visit a week ago. Aku assume depa ikut macam Nike Outlet, restock barang seminggu sekali on every Thursday.

Aku terus ke Adidas Outlet. Berlakon macam first time sampai, padahal dah tau kasut mana yang nak grab. Takde pulak Response Trail Boost yang aku belek last week. Seorang brader yang nampak peramah approach aku & terus aku tanya pasal kasut trail running. Seemed that he's good at his job. Dia terus pi cari and brought back the shoes, probably the pair from my recent recon. Unlike some other SA, they seemed to have no clue of what product they are selling. Bila aku tanya trail running shoes, depa pi tunjuk kasut lari. Rasa macam nak apply kerja kat Adidas je, bantu & share knowledge to people about sports product.

He brought me size 8UK. I tried it on. Obviously I already knew that it's too huge for me, plus some reviews said that the shoes are a bit roomy on the forefoot. However, it seemed nice tatkala aku bergaya berjalan depan cermin. The colour does matched with the greenery as well.

Aku mencuba nasib to get more info about the restocking process. He said that restocking is done every Friday and items are being send over since they have received the email list that morning. That's today! Jackpot! Aku mintak tolong dia check ada tak Response Trail Boost dalam list tu. Brader ni dengan ikhlas terus ke counter dan check dalam komputer. Aku terus berdoa.

He came back and brought sad news. I requested for the outlet's phone number just in case boleh check semula every week. Dah takde kerja lain agaknya nak check stock?

While driving back home, this mind is working non-stop. He did mention that another Adidas Outlet is at Johor Premier Outlet. I Google-ed their phone number and gave them a call. I know these people are helpful, hence I straight away asked about the shoe. 

Moments later the SA said the words "Ya! Ada bang. Kami ada size UK7 dan UK8." The words that saved the world. And he followed with some discounts promotion which I didn't quite catch the details.

Apa lagi? Aku terus text my nephew in JB and get him to execute the salvation mission. He went later that evening and shared some photos for confirmation. As a bonus, the promotion did reduces the shoe price by half with 5 pairs of socks thrown in. Alhamdulillah.

In the mean time, I have to work out these legs for Gunung Semangkuk. I have 3 weeks which I hope my sprained ankle won't give up on me. Insyaa Allah.

There you go. Please be loyal unlike Salomon :)

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Evolusi Lanun Basikal 3 - BMX dan Pengangkutan Sendiri

Saya dibesarkan di tengah-tengah zaman BMX, antara jenama terulung zaman itu yang sudah pasti menjadi idola ramai kanak-kanak lelaki. Pengeluar BMX terkemuka pada masa itu seperti Kuwahara, Mongoose, Shimano dan GT memang berlumba-lumba memasuki pasaran di serata dunia. Tetapi saya hanya mampu melihat dan membelek di kedai-kedai basikal. Agak "rare" untuk jumpa kerana kurang kedai basikal. BMX lebih meletup dengan kemunculan cerita E.T. di panggung wayang. Watak sekumpulan kanak-kanak yang menunggang BMX dalam usaha menyelamatkan makhluk asing.

Namun, saya hanya seorang kanak-kanak lelaki yang terdedah dengan pengaruh arus perdana terutama dari kotak televisyen. BMX juga menjadi impian saya ketika di bangku sekolah. Rakan-rakan sebaya di kejiranan juga ada yang berkemampuan untuk menunggang BMX. Sedikit terliur bila melihat mereka menunggang bersama. Tambahan lagi apabila tiba waktu bermarhaban di bulan Syawal yang memberi peluang kami berkonvoi dengan basikal di sekeliling taman. 

Puas saya memujuk rayu ayah untuk menaja sebuah BMX. Unfortunately, idea pendedahan trend BMX mendapat tentangan dari ibu. Ibu tidak berkenan dengan konsep reka bentuk BMX yang dikatakannya agak serba kekurangan (togel). Basikal tak cukup sifat yang tak berbaloi dengan harganya, sedangkan tidak dikemaskan dengan mud-guard, loceng, lampu dan sarung rantai. Saya terpaksa akur kerana penasihat tidak luluskan penajaan.

Saya berusaha juga untuk mendapatkan tajaan, walaupun apa jenis juga basikal kerana saya tahu BMX sudah tiada dalam senarai impian. Namun, spesifikasi basikal terpaksa ditukar kepada basikal yang lebih sopan. Zaman itu dipanggil 'basikal mini'. Saya kurang pasti apa nama sebenar tetapi itulah panggilan yang lebih popular. Mungkin saiznya yang lebih kecil dan lebih ringan berbanding basikal 'cargo' yang direka khas untuk kaum wanita. 

Tahun 80-an saya hanya kenal empat jenis basikal:
  • Basikal cargo atau basikal Jepun atau basikal kampung atau basikal jaguar. Tiga panggilan terawal jelas diperolehi dari kegunaanya, tapi panggilan terakhir agak kurang pasti. Basikal cargo sangat popular dan agak versatile. Malah sekarang dianggap vintage dan menjadi 'collectors item'.
  • Basikal mini. Saiz lebih kecil dan lebih ringan dari basikal cargo. Geometri lebih sesuai untuk penunggang wanita terutama dengan ketiadaan palang tengah. Nampak lebih sopan dan feminin. Sangat popular sewaktu ramai pekerja kilang wanita zaman itu.
  • Basikal BMX. Saiz lebih kecil dari basikal mini. Sesuai untuk kanak-kanak dan remaja. Sesuai untuk aktiviti lasak dan aksi-aksi yang berjiwa muda. Sangat mudah dijaga, malah tidak memerlukan sebarang penyelenggaraan.  Dilengkapi tayar yang tebal untuk pelbagai permukaan terutama off-road.
  • Terkemudian sikit baru muncul basikal Chopper. Basikal import. Memang spesis yang berlainan, yang lebih kepada gaya, mutu dan keunggulan.
Akhirnya saya dihadiahkan sebuah basikal mini. Antara tujuan utama sebagai mode transport untuk ke sekolah dan kelas mengaji. Saya hanya mampu bersyukur dan berterima kasih kerana akan bermulanya episod penjelahan baharu.

Evolusi Lanun Basikal 2

Saya sambung post yang pertama dulu sebab agak tergantung. Mungkin lebih elok diadakan 'sequel'.

Secara asasnya atau lahiriahnya yang dapat kita saksikan dari kaca mata ini, penunggang atau pengguna basikal di mana jua saya dapat kategorikan mengikut kelompok tujuannya seperti:

  • pengangkutan ke tempat kerja (commuting) dan pengangkutan untuk bekerja seperti membawa barang.
  • sebagai hobi dalam sukan berbasikal bagi mengisi masa lapang, minat dengan perkembangan teknologi dunia basikal atau industri sukan berbasikal itu sendiri.
  • beriadah untuk kesihatan atau menguji kekuatan individu
  • pengumpul atau "collectors".
  • mod pengangkutan untuk menjelajah seperti "bike touring".
  • atau digunakan untuk menakluk dunia! Ingat bagaimana Jepun menawan Malaya? 

Evolusi dunia basikal ini boleh saya katakan sesuatu yang sangat besar peradabannya. Benar, ia berkembang sejajar dengan evolusi manusia berabad lamanya. Mungkin majoriti dari masyarakat kita terutamanya di Malaysia, kurang perasan kerana kita lebih memandang kepada model-model terbaharu Vellfire, BMW, Odyssey, Passat, Harley Davidson dan berbagai kenderaan berenjin yang dijadikan sebagai simbol kejayaan atau kemewahan. 

"Basikal?! Apa lah sangat?! Hah?!! Ada basikal yang harga macam sebuah Honda City?!

Begitulah jawapan mereka yang hanya mengutamakan kemewahan teknologi kenderaan berenjin. Sehinggakan kenderaan mekanikal yang pertama di peradaban dunia langsung disisih. 

"Terkadang kita dipesan untuk kurangkan memandang ke atas kerana kita akan lupa asalnya kita bermula dari bawah."

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Trail Running Shoes

Aku pun tak pasti kenapa jiwa aku dah kembali dirasuk oleh alam hutan. Sejak kembali aktif dengan sahabat-sahabat kejiranan dalam aktiviti hutan ni, mula dah hilang feel nak kayuh basikal. Akal Bujal ni sentiasa aje memikirkan plan outdoor.

After our trip up Mt. Kinabalu, I injured myself. Due to the level of injury and aging factor, the recovery was slow. Now dah masuk hampir sebulan tapi ankle kiri masih sengal akibat terseliuh kat Kinabalu Summit Trail. Masa nak balik turun ke Timpohon Gate, aku terkelendat kaki kiri sewaktu pijak salah satu boulder yang agak licin.

Last two weeks aku hiked to Kem Lolo with my kids and neighbours. The gripping uppersole of Salomon membuatkan kaki kiri aku menjerit. If I want to keep on hiking in the future, I need to replace the Salomon.

So the homework and recon works pun bermula. Kembali membaca trail running shoes review dan window shopping. Dah lama aku tinggalkan kerja ni. Dan dah macam-macam jenis kasut trail run yang tak pernah aku jumpa. 

To cut short the story, aku rasa dah boleh shortlist the options.
  • Aku tak pilih New Balance sebab rasanya design dah tak sejiwa dengan aku. Design dan pilihan warna yang agak pelik untuk usia aku. Aku tak tengok harga sebab astetik pun dah awal kena strike out.
  • Aku revisit Brooks Cascadia. Aku pernah ada Cascadia Pure Grit. Antara yang pernah aku belasah sebagai all rounder dari trail running, hiking, bike touring dan sneakers buat jalan-jalan. Disebabkan multi function, aku bagi thumbs up, tambah pulak aku beli di warehouse sale semurah RM150 sahaja. Tapi sekarang Cascadia 10 dah RM400+. Aku cancel.
  • Salomon? Price too steep. Selepas aku lenjan XA Pro 3D ke Pine Tree Trail, Gunung Datuk, Gunung Bunga dan eventually Mt. Kinabalu, aku rasa aku pernah pakai kasut yang lebih selesa dari Salomon dan jauh lebih murah.
  • Nike. Antara jenama dan design yang paling aku minat tapi tak pernah bertemu jodoh, walaupun running shoes dia. Aku pernah ada Nike ACG dan memang puas hati. Kasut tu juga terkubur di tong sampah Stesen Keretapi Dabong sebaik aku tamatkan misi Gunung Stong. Kali ni aku terpikat dengan Nike Terra Kiger 3. Design yang habis minimalist dengan pilihan warna yang simple but yet attractive. Puas hati aku tawaf separuh kedai Nike dan Stadium di KL mencari size, cuma ada beberapa outlet yang availabe. 
Nike Terra Kiger 3
  • Eventually aku came across sepasang kasut yang agak pelik di kedai Adidas. Dah banyak outlet aku menerubus tapi boleh pulak outlet ni aje yang aku jumpa Response TR Boost ni. Aku ada jumpa di Mitsui sebelum ni tapi sebabkan takde saiz, jadi aku abaikan pencarian. Tapi kali ni aku test sarung sepasang. Mantop gak feel dia. Balik terus baca online review. Setakat yang aku baca, majoriti bagi good review walaupun tak semua kata perfect. Biasa lah tu.
Adidas Response TR Boost

Pre-conclusion aku belum buat tapi setakat ni aku berat kepada Response TR Boost. Nike Terra Kiger 3 mungkin aku kena abaikan sebab penggunaan aku bukan setakat trail run aje. Aku akan lenjan juga untuk hiking dan daki gunung, just like the old days. Hence, the minimalist concept yang ada pada TK3 aku rasa tak cukup untuk beri protection pada kaki aku.

Weather With You

Sekali sekala aku suka jugak memantau perubahan cuaca, especially the obvious changes. It has been a bit windy for the past few days. Wind means nyaman when you are at this altitude, but not when you are at higher ground. It can be painful.

I woke up this morning to a gusting sound through the holes at our car porch. It made the howling sound. This phenomena normally happen when there are storms coming. But, as I left the home for Fajr prayer, I said to my son, the sky is bright and no storm is coming. However, the wind was definitely pleasant. It lasted for a few hours until 8.00 a.m. and the sun started to shine.

The same goes for a few days. But, it was surely hot days.

However, I can remember that friends way up in the north used to celebrate this phenomena which actually happened at this time of the year. They call it Angin Timur. Sounds like a song title from a local rock band. And yes, the wind is so strong for a few days/weeks. They will organise a group ride and they rode the flat roads of Perlis through sugarcane plantations, which most of them will curse and...come back again the following years.

I have suffered enough from other rides with similar conditions. Not in my future list.

Thursday, February 25, 2016


I have been looking for the right word to describe my definition for this kind of people. It has been awhile until I came across this word in a recent Facebook post. It matches correctly.

The clearest example goes viral on Facebook nowadays. Sejak aku kembali berjinak dengan aktiviti outdoor ni especially hiking, dan aku joined satu group Facebook. Tujuannya nak dapatkan info menarik seperti tempat or lokasi hiking, tapi aku dapat sakit mata instead. The growing numbers of hipster hikers are such an eyesore. 

You can obviously tell the difference between a true hiker from the hipsters. And the mishaps started coming in with accidents, falls, tonnes of rubbish, forest fires and even deaths are common. They are simply ignorance and plain careless. They don't do homework and zero experience, but yet boasting via selfies.

Apa orang buat, depa pun nak buat jugak. Tambah lagi ada mobile phone canggih untuk selfie, post on social medias & mula meraih popular. Orang lepak Starbuck to enjoy the freshly brew caffeine, depa pun nak jugak. Depa tak enjoy pun coffee tu, but main handphone, selfie & post & boast.

Orang amalkan hidup sihat, bagus lah depa sahut kempen tu. So the running industry had a boost from health conscious minded people. Yang baru tersedar dari lamunan beratur beli nasi lemak or roti canai. Maka ramailah yang participate in events. Dan banyaklah running events tumbuh macam kulat. Aku sebut kulat instead of cendawan sebab event ni semua mengenakan bayaran yang mahal. Setakat nak lari 10km tapi kena bayar sampai RM80. Tapi these hipsters tetap setia sebab it is their new living culture, hidup sihat, trendy. Tidak disangkal juga, ada yang berjaya sehingga ke peringkat ultra distance, tapi bila aku tengok muka depa, it is empty in passion. 

Tak payah tipu or cover dengan ribuan 'likes' or gambar-gambar selfie merata dunia hang pi.

Hence, we have a new species and a wide variety of sub-species. From hipster hikers to hipster runners. And ada jugak hipster big bikers. Yang ini ada segelintir yang akhlak habis ke laut. Setakat ni, agak masih kabur nak determine hipster cyclists. So far, it looks genuine.


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Going Independent

Setelah hampir 18 tahun bekerja makan gaji, akhirnya aku telah membuat keputusan untuk resign dan mengambil langkah yang agak drastik dalam perjalanan hidup 45 tahun ini. Aku decide untuk bekerja sendiri. At this age and with the commitments, it is a risky attempt tapi aku dah tak boleh tahan dengan atmosphere kerja makan gaji yang terkadang tergelincir dari batasan baik dan buruk. Aku ingin memasang niat semula, iaitu mencari rezki yang halal & cukup.

"We will be forever a sovereign democratic and independent state founded upon the principles of liberty and justice and ever seeking the welfare and happiness of its people….”. 

- Tunku Abdul Rahman.

Aku mulakan dengan mengambil cuti tanpa gaji selama sebulan. Just in case, the try out fails, aku boleh masuk pejabat semula. Tapi aku mungkin belajar through laluan yang agak jauh or sukar sebab aku tiada vision yang jelas tentang apa yang aku nak buat. A piece of me nak jadi penulis, another piece of me nak jadi penterjemah. Dunia yang sangat baharu untuk aku dan banyak ragam yang perlu aku pelajari. 

Tapi Allah swt itu Maha mengetahui, sedangkan aku langsung tak pernah terfikir atau find deep inside yang aku ada bakat lain. 

My closest friend was my sister. She supported my idea of quitting my job and try my own. She keeps track of my everyday progress. She keeps on motivating. She outlined every steps for me as guidance.

Betul. Apabila setiap bulan bergaji and suddenly takde fix income for a month, boleh memeningkan. Apatah lagi bulan kedua dan ketiga. The commitments build up and the challenge became stressful. Tapi keputusan tekad aku untuk tidak kembali makan gaji mendorong aku untuk terus bergelumang dengan beban. Aku yakin, it will be temporary. Allah knows best.

That was where aku melipat kali gandakan hubungan aku dengan Allah swt. Setiap saat dalam solat aku really appreciate. Aku betul-betul communicate dengan Dia. Aku hayati every baris bacaan ayat-ayat Al-Quran serta tasbih dan tahmid yang keluar dari bibir ni. 

Dalam aku mencari-cari pendapatan tetap, aku menerima beberapa kerja freelance menterjemah. Aku terjemah abstrak thesis, laporan, SOP dan sebagainya. Tapi income tidak konsisten. Aku ambil sebagai rezki yang halal dan pengalaman sambil membantu mereka yang memerlukan. Niat kena betul.

My sister threw me an idea which I think was feasible. In December she persuaded me to open an intensive class for primary school students. Hence the marketing took place few weeks prior through Facebook, Whatsapp groups etc. 

Alhamdulillah, I survived the two weeks programme. Dan dalam pada itu, aku bertambah yakin dan motivated to start my own tuition class in 2016 as my fix income.

Alhamdulillah, sekarang dah masuk bulan kedua aku menjalankan, mengurus dan mentadbir my own tiny business. It is service oriented. The education industry. Mendidik anak-anak jiran ilmu. Diharapkan berkongsi ilmu ialah antara amal jariah yang terjamin ganjarannya di akhirat kelak.


Masa berlalu terlalu pantas. Kini sudah masuk bulan kedua dalam kalendar Masihi 2016. Terasa setahun yang lalu macam masih fresh dalam ingatan. Aku perlu take a few steps back untuk berlipur lara untuk post kali ini sebab everything started quite a year back.

Menjejak awan at Laban Rata accommodation, 3272m

A year ago, someone dalam komuniti kami telah petik the idea of scaling up Mount Kinabalu. And the idea evolved so fast that it catered 24 individuals within weeks. I was one of them. It was my second attempt. The first was in 2007 in a small party of 7. However, this time the group is huge and the buddies were like perfect.

Though after my first attempt, I was like sort of retired from all this mountain madness, due to time and age of course, but this party is irresistible. You wouldn't want to miss it.

Fund was collected in stages. We had a year to come up with it. It was a good idea, ample and convenient. I like the idea. We bought our flight in January with Malindo at RM325. And some where in April we paid our climbing fee deposit of about RM314. The balance of it came it subsequently and followed by ground handling expenses. With a total of almost RM1000 per person, we find it perfect.

Then came in the training. We scaled a few neighbouring hills and mountains such as Pine Tree Trail, in Fraser Hill, Gunung Datuk in Rembau and Gunung Bunga Buah at Genting Highland. The later was my favorite since the old mountain days. I like the view from the first Rock Garden Peak of Genting Resort. It also reminds me of Gunung Tahan.

I even started running again. After a laborious attempt at Bunga Buah, I knew that I need strong legs and stamina. Hence, the running started weeks before Kinabalu and I revisited the favorite local 8km loop.

On 31-January 2016 we made it to the peak of Mount Kinabalu. 4095.25 meters, as the highest ground in South East Asia. All 24 of us. Totally exhausted but with buddies like this, it was fun. Alhamdulillah.

The cold and chilling wind was stronger than before but the hours spent and magnificent views were prestine.

Low's Peak Smile

Tuesday, February 23, 2016


Aku rasa by this time, blog mungkin dah takde dalam tatabahasa masyarakat. Cuma dengar orang sebut Insta dan Facebook aje. Blog pun sekali sekala bila aku Google untuk rujukan religious material. Itu pun sometimes agak outdated. Memang orang dah jarang membaca dan blogging. On the other side, aku notice di Facebook dah semakin ramai penulis buku dan followers depa. Ramai. Dah ada tribes. Baguih naaa...

Well at least I now have a peaceful mind to write about anything. Subject matters can be a wide variety of topics.

And the first for this 2016, that had just crossed my mind moments ago is about mentality, mindset, akhlak. The biggest issue and it is becoming cancerous in our community.

The thing that I saw just now was sick. Seorang pelajar sekolah menengah yang baru aje keluar pagar sekolah lantas dengan tanpa rasa bersalah, and in fact nampak bangga, buang botol minuman terus ke dalam longkang tepi jalan. Sakit mata memandang, sakit lagi hati ni. Instinct aku rasa macam nak berhentikan kereta & starlet budak tu suruh dia kutip balik botol tu.

The first thing that I wish to blame is no other than the parents. Aku tak blame this kid sebab pendidikan akhlak dia ialah tanggungjawab parents dia, bermula di rumah. But then again, perhaps dia takde parents. Tapi dia masih di bawah tanggungjawab sekolah sebab supposed ada pendidikan sivik dalam silibus.

It is the most common scenario di luar pagar sekolah. Dalam sekolah memang bersih. Tip top. But the akhlak dan disiplin was left only within the fence. Once keluar, bumi yang Allah pinjamkan ni takde nilai untuk dijaga. Tapi balik rumah, tidak pulak dibuangnya sampah di atas lantai ruang tamu, kan?

And the second most common scenario yang lately jadi viral bila our hutan, waterfall, taman, laut pun tak dijaga adab tu. How can one do not have conscience for this? Kalau dalam Islam, manusia yang sebegini belum sampai level mumayyiz. Tak boleh beza antara yang baik & buruk, yang suci & yang najis. 

Dan mungkin mereka ni ingat ada kontraktor mai kutip sampah dalam hutan or atas gunung tu. Or nanti ada sukarelawan mai anjur aktiviti kutip sampah jebon-jebon ni. Akal ada tapi tak pernah kisah nak guna. Remeh mungkin untuk mereka sebab akal tu lebih senang & selesa disimpan di rumah, and ikut nafsu instead.

Perhaps akhlak manusia semakin nipis akibat terlalu berputar di dalam dunia dia sendiri. Dunia makhluk lain, tidak dipeduli.  Sick people.

Full of hope that parents will open their eyes and hearts for the sake of future generations, this generation Y or Z or whatever huruf hangpa nak pakai. You can be rich and bold, or strong and religiously driven, tapi without good conscience, akhlak, adab dan segala silibus tuk nenek kita dulu ajar, jangan panggil diri tu berjaya.