Salam & good day to my dearest friends,
Its a beautiful sunny day in Putrajaya with the chirping of the many species of local and migratory birds, the blooming flowers and the well-groomed trees adding the calmness and serenity of the surrounding.
Perhaps at the ‘eve of CNY adds the extra pomp and splendour of what nature has got to offer to us humans and the blessings of God Almighty being translated via the sincerity of our hearts and souls where the deepest in within us chanting prayers to God Almighty to consider our humble beginnings and existence in this non permanent borrowed world …
Dearest friends, as many of you are well aware of, my wife and I operate two F&B based kiosks situated at Presint 8 and Presint 9 Putrajaya, respectively .. the usual local cuisines paraded on the counter to entice one’s appetite and desire. Today, we are at our kiosk in Presint 9.
Operating a food kiosk means dealing with members of the public from all walks of life.. the rich, the poor, the down troddens, the youngs and olds. Sometimes , ex ministers Tan Sris, Datuks, Datins, high ranked govt servants will drop by but most of the time our kiosks are being frequented by the ‘normal ordinary people’ who are the ones that will determine our profit and loss account at the end of the day.
My wife and I are ‘full timers’ in this f&b biz since my early retirement from TNB due to my poor vision ( I am legally blind so to speak) 8 years ago. Throughout these challenging years of our involvement, we encountered many experiences of many storylines out of our daily encounters with our multi layered customers .. happy, sad, hilarious, heart wrenching story linesand anecdotes thus enriching our understandings, enhancing our humbility and perhaps broadening our wiseness on the subject of life and its realities.
At 8.53am this morning while attending to several customers across the counter, my wife noticed a young Chinese guy amongst those customers and when his turn came, spontaneously my wife asked him; .. Yes, good morning young man. Kong Hee Fatt Choy. Why are you still in town and not back home for makan busat, tonight?” .. A bit taken aback, he answered in fluent Malay but his voice was rather choking ..; Tak boleh baik lagi lah kak. Boss saya tak bayar gaji lagi. Mungkin tak balik kut” ..
My wife said; “ye ke, that’s rather sad” .. I couldn’t help it but joined in the ensuing conversation … from the conversation, I gathered that he was from Ipoh Perak and his name .. Tan and working at one of the construction sites in Putrajaya.
He asked for 2 bungkus nasi lemak and my wife packed him 3 packets of kueh tradisional .. seri muka, talam and kueh keria. My wife said to him, .. ‘ now orang muda, take these kuehs too. These are from the bottom of our hearts. They are not worthy of mention but they are from a dear sister to a dear brother. Keep that glow in your heart though you may not be able to celebrate CNY with your parents and siblings at home” …
I could hear an emotional reply, “TQ Kak, you are so kind … and as he was right in front of us .. we could see there were tears in his eyes. I said to him, .. Take care bro .. kong hee fatt choy .. He smiled a courageous sad smile and replied, TQ Bang and wiped his eyes with his shaking right hand … Tan left us with perhaps sad heavy heart but I am quite sure he realised that there are still those who care and who share …
Honestly, my wife and I felt warm tears flowing from our eyes … we are plain humans after all …
Now friends, there are many ‘Tans, Ahmads and/or Muthus out there here … reach out and let us be and always be “caring and loving Malaysians with sincerity at heart no matter what and who we are …
As for my brother Tan, I pray that his boss pays Tan’s salary today and thst Tan can go back home … Kong Hee Fatt Choy Tan and to all those celebrating CNY and to all fellow Malaysians .. God bless us all.
4th Feb. 2019.
(Tunku Mafuza was an ex TNB corporate lawyer. A true Malaysian. God bless him)