Tuesday, 11 September 2018

An old man in the new year

Today is 11 September 2018 by the Gregorian calendar. It is also the first day of the new year in the Islamic calendar, otherwise known as the 1st of Muharram for 1440 Hijri. I have previously written in earlier posts about the difference between these two calendars; the main one being that the Hijri year is shorter than the Gregorian by about 10 to 11 days. However, I don't think I have mentioned of another notable dissimilarity.

In Islamic tradition, the beginning of a new day occurs at dusk, i.e. when the sun of the preceding day has set. This means that the new Hijri year began yesterday evening at around 7.07pm (sunset time for the district of Johor Bahru, Malaysia). I am highlighting this fact because a significant event took place last night.

Our daughter-in-law, Nor Hanida Bt Elias, gave birth to her first child, a girl, at around 9.20pm at Sultanah Aminah Hospital. Both mother and baby are doing well, alhamdulillah. They have been discharged a few hours ago. Our first grand-daughter arrived in this world on 10 September 2018 but by the Islamic calendar, she is a new year baby. By coincidence (or the Almighty's design, depending on your point of view) the baby's father, my eldest son Arshad Khalid, was also born on 1st Muharram exactly 30 Hijri years ago.

My better half and I are now grandparents.

In previous posts, I have acknowledged many times that I am a senior citizen by virtue of the numerous grand-nephews and grand-nieces in our extended family. Even the Oldstock nickname (first applied when I was still a teenager) is a reflection of this. And now, with the arrival of our first grandchild, I am a confirmed `Datuk'. An honour not bestowed by any king or nobility.

An old man in the new year...

The new baby in the arms of her grandmother

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

A different birthday occasion this year

It is already the month of August 2018. A lot of things has happened but I have not had the inclination to write about them. So I'll just post a short note about my birthday this year which actually was last month, on the 6th of July. It is more of a personal dedication to a very important person.

Some years ago, I came across a good suggestion from someone who said that the person whom we should congratulate first on our birthday is our mother. It is she who went through the pain of childbirth, the trouble to clothe and feed us, and the responsibility to raise us to become decent human beings.

I count my blessings to be fortunate enough to still have my mother with me. Syukur alhamdulillah. This year, both parents came to stay at my place for the Aidilfitri celebration. By design of the Almighty, my mother had a fall in the early morning of the 2nd day of raya. Her left upper arm bone (humerus) was fractured and is now in a plaster cast. Her extended stay meant that I can have this special pic taken with her on my birthday. A very rare occasion indeed.

Hjh Aduwiah Bt Haji Mohd Rashid who gave birth to yours truly when she was 21 years old.

The heart of a mother is a deep abyss at the bottom of which you will always find forgiveness.

Wednesday, 31 January 2018


It is the last day of the first month of the new year. I did not post anything in the last month of last year. I would be good to give excuses but that would be too boring I guess.

I did make visits to two interesting places in November and December 2017 that would complete my One Local Destination A Month Series but then things happened last month that sort of put a hold on blogging activities. So I'll try to make it up by writing about those places in the next post after this one.

But not today. I've read that something special on an astronomical level is happening tonight... something that happens once in a blue moon. So I'm popping outside to see if the skies are kind enough to be clear for me to see it.

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

One local destination a month - Part 10 : Huda's Haven Resort, Ulu Rening, Selangor

I have to start this instalment of my local destination series with an admission that it is a biased post. The resort that I'll be writing about belongs to a good friend of mine whom I've known since university days. Having said that, I'll invite readers to have a look at other independent reviews that can be found on Facebook and Google Maps.

Huda's Haven Resort is a rural holiday venue located amongst hills and green jungle in a quiet little village called Kampung Ulu Rening near Batang Kali in Selangor. While the place is next to a jungle, it is only about an hour's drive from Kuala Lumpur, making it an ideal place for that quick getaway from the bustle of city life.

There is a cool and clear stream along the resort's boundary where you can enjoy a refreshing dip. If you prefer, you can also relax in the swimming pool where the water is fed naturally from the stream. The pool has barrier hoarding around it, so it is possible to restrict access for certain duration and make it muslimah-friendly.

Other facilities that are available include a small field suitable for futsal, a fishing pond where you can catch some patin or talapia and a multi-purpose hall which doubles up as a karaoke room. If you fancy some rugged riding, get on an ATV and explore jungle tracks that lead to a waterfall.

The resort presently has 12 rooms in different configurations and sleeping capacity. All rooms have a/c, attached bathrooms with hot shower and TV. You can also opt for a more adventurous digs such as gazebos and tents. Overall, the place is ideal for large groups, family gatherings and team-building stints.

I am not a beach or island guy. Which is why beach resort holiday destinations such as Bali, Perhentian or Tioman have never appealed to me. I prefer adventure locations and eco-resorts. Huda's Haven suits me nicely. I have been here a few times but those were short visits only. I hope to come again and spend a longer time. I have yet to take that ATV ride and explore the waterfall.

Huda's Haven is accessible by car. If you come from Kuala Lumpur, you can use the North-South Expressway (exit at Sg Buaya/Serendah), use the old Federal Route 1 (the new Rawang Elevated By-pass now open) or use the Sg Tua - Ulu Yam road via Selayang. The resort is also marked on Google Maps but if you are navigating using Maps, then please set your destination to Klink Desa Hulu Rening and follow the resort's signboard from there on. The last kilometre to the resort passes through private land and therefore not indicated in the app. A short stretch of this track is unpaved but still drivable for most cars.

Further details of the resort (rates, availability, meal options etc.) can be found on the resort's website and Facebook page at the following links :

- Website : Huda's Haven
- Facebook : Huda's Haven Resort

Standard rooms in a 2-storey block. Visited 10 October 2017

Standard rooms on a single floor

Dining hall and multi-purpose hall

View from new chalet units under construction. ATV parking in the foreground

Cool and refreshing Sg Hijau beckons you

Time to savour nature

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Waiting game...

I wonder what percentage of our daily hours awake is spent on waiting?

Waiting for the bus or train...
Waiting for the monthly paycheck...
Waiting for someone to make a decision...
Waiting for politicians to make good their promises...
Waiting for medicine to be dispensed...

Mobile blogging while waiting at HSA Polyclinic pharmacy