19 October 2017

KISAH MISTIK DARI GUNUNG (2)


Assalamualaikum dan hai-yee!


Disebabkan tiba-tiba je entry tahun lepas naik semula tahun ni berkenaan dengan kisah mistik dari gunung dan mendapat sambutan hangat hewhew #perasan (thanks but no thanks FB memories  ), saya pun decide nak buat sambungan kepada bahagian pertama.

(Klik sini untuk bahagian pertama)

Dalam entry yang lepas, pengalaman mistik terakhir ialah sewaktu trip ke Bukit Berekeh.
Lepas balik dari Berekeh, ada beberapa trip lain yang saya join. 

Salah satunya gunung G7 saya yang kedua dan ketiga, Korbu dan Gayong, atau nama manjanya, KorGa di Perak.

Masa dioffer untuk join panjat KorGa tu, takdelah terfikir akan berlaku benda-benda mistik. Tapi ada juga terbaca dekat Google pasal kes-kes misteri dekat KorGa – kes kematian, kehilangan etc etc. Pernah jugak dengar Amar cerita pengalaman peribadi dia dekat KorGa. Tapi biasalah, ketegaq nak jugak pergi haha

Berdasarkan tentatif kami untuk 3 hari 2 malam, hari kedua kami akan mendaki puncak Korbu, seterusnya Gayong, dan kembali ke puncak Korbu sebelum turun kembali ke campsite di Kem Kijang, semuanya dalam tempoh kurang lebih 15 jam. Perjalanan hari kedua dari mula mendaki sehingga selamat sampai di kem dijangka akan tamat pukul 9 malam. 

Mula terbaca tentatif tu memang dah rasa hayoo kenapa sampai malam lagi. Tak cukup ke dekat YYBTN berjalan sampai tengah malam dalam hutan huhuhu

Kalau ikut tentatif YYBTN yang sepatutnya sampai kem pukul 6 petang pun kami lewat 6 jam sampai 12 malam. Yang ni dijangka tamat pukul 9 agak-agak pukul berapalah sampai kem. Tapi sebab dah bayar daftar apa semua, tak kan nak tarik diri kan. 

Waktu hari kedua, kami sampai puncak Korbu lebih kurang pukul 12 tengahari, sampai Gayong pukul 3.00 petang, dan kembali semula ke puncak Korbu pukul 6 lebih dah dekat pukul 7. Sewaktu dalam perjalanan dari Gayong kembali ke Korbu, kami terserempak dengan ahli-ahli kumpulan yang baru nak naik ke Gayong. Guide kami mula tak bagi deorang terus ke Gayong, dia mintak ahli-ahli kami ni patah balik.

Tapi sebab deorang still bersemangat nak sampai ke puncak Gayong, almaklumlah sekali aja seumur hidup begitu, mereka pun teruskan lagi ke Gayong sedangkan kami dah patah semula ke Korbu. 

Jadi perjalanan kami nak turun semua ke kem melalui Chuban yang pacak namatey nokhalal tu memang tengah-tengah waktu Maghrib. Saya ni almaklumlah, hati dah tak tenang dalam kepala dok terfikir please lah sampai Kem Kijang cepat. Please lah at least sekitar waktu Isyak. Tak mahu lama-lama dalam hutan. 

Masa tu kami bertiga je. Saya, Wardy, dengan abang guide. Kami berhenti waktu Maghrib sekejap dekat puncak Chuban. Dalam keadaan baju hujan yang saya pakai dah compang camping dicarik ranting-ranting pokok, peha melecet dan matahari dah terbenam, kami teruskan perjalanan ke puncak Botak.

Masa tu headlamp di kepala, nampak dari puncak Botak ada orang menyuluh-nyuluh ke arah kami. Masa tu tahulah kawan-kawan kami yang awal ada beberapa orang dekat Botak. Tapi bila sampai ke Botak je, deorang dah takde. Deorang dah terus berjalan turun ke Last Water Point. 

Kami berehat sekejap dekat sini. Abang guide dah mula membebel sebab budak-budak tu taknak patah balik. Kami yang kira awal pun dah dekat Isyak baru dekat Botak, yang dekat belakang tu entah bila nak balik ke kem. Anggaran kami dengan orang belakang selang masa dalam 2 jam.

Lepas berehat sekejap, kami terus lagi berjalan bertiga. Abang guide dekat depan, saya dekat tengah, Wardy di belakang. Wardy disebabkan ni gunung pertama dia dah terus gunung G7, mungkin sebab dia tak biasa, lutut dia dah sakit. 

Bila sampai ke Last Water Point, guide kami tanya kalau kami lapar. Saya dengan Wardy dua-dua kata kami tak lapar, kami lagi tazabar nak balik ke kem. Dekat kem nanti baru fikir makan.
Rupanya abang guide tanya sebab dia nak ajak kami stay dekat Last Water Point tu. Dia kata hati dia tak sedap, dia nak tunggu orang belakang jugak.

Saya dengan Wardy nak membantah tu tidaklah. Jadi kami berdua terus baring dekat situ, tidur. Saya baring terus atas tanah walaupun sejuk gila sebab badan dah penat. Lapar, dahaga semua ada. Wardy bersandar dekat batu. 

Waktu tulah saya mimpi ada lelaki datang. Beberapa kali dia datang dari dalam semak ke arah kami. Dia senyum.

Tiba-tiba saya terjaga sebab ada orang tepuk bahu kiri. Saya ingatkan Wardy tepuk, tapi bila saya bangun saya nampak Wardy jauh. Tengah tidur nyenyak pulak tu. 

Belah kanan saya dekat seberang denai, abang guide tengah tidur. Jadi tak mungkin deorang yang tepuk bahu saya.

Saya pun sambung tidur, dalam hati rasa geram jugak sebab nak balik kem. Taknak tidur sini huhuhu
Sekali lagi, ada orang tolak bahu dari belakang. Haish, gurau kasar nampak. Saya pun bangun, terduduk. Kalau sekali mungkin perasaan, kalau dua kali faham-fahamlah.

Nampak Wardy dengan abang guide tidur, saya tak sampai hati nak kejutkan. 

Waktu tu dari bawah lereng dekat denai pendakian, saya nampak ada cahaya, kecil macam kelip-kelip. Tapi dia tak macam kelip-kelip sebab dia tak berkerdip, cahaya dia constant je. Dia mengikut je denai tu naik ke atas. Berkali-kali saya tengok nak pastikan benda tu terbang dan bukan headlamp atau torchlight. Kalau headlamp, siapa yang nak panjat Korbu tengah malam ni? 

Masa tu macam-macam saya fikir. Kalau binatang, kenapa dia kena ikut denai manusia? Dia boleh je terbang ikut semak, off track kan? Kenapa dia terbang menuju puncak? Apa yang binatang ni buat malam-malam terbang ke puncak Korbu? 

Sampailah cahaya tu lalu dekat kami, terus naik ke atas melewati kami. Saya diam je waktu tu, benda pelik jangan ditegur. Masa dia lalu tu, saya sorang je yang terjaga. 

Tak lama lepas tu, abang guide bangun kejutkan kami. Dalam sejam jugak kami berhenti dekat sini. Dia ajak kami turun, sebab katanya dah tak tahan sejuk. Memang sejuk gila weh waktu tu, dengan perut lapar rasa nak termuntah perut masuk angin semua. 

Bila nak turun semula, sebab Wardy sakit kaki, abang guide suruh saya jalan belakang sekali. Wuuu nak nanges rasanya. Mental koyak habis waktu tu, dalam hutan yang gelap gila, takde manusia, dok fikir aku dahlah baru je kena kacau. Kau suruh aku dok belakang. Kalau aku hilang ke apa ke, mesti korang tak perasan kan huhu. Tapi tak tergamak pulak nak cerita saya baru lepas kena kacau, kata orang benda pelik jangan cerita. Dah keluar hutan baru boleh bukak cerita. 

Alhamdulillah, balik tu dah takde apa sampailah kami tiba dekat Kem Kijang dalam pukul 12 malam, semua orang dah tidur. Besok tu, Wardy bagitau dekat saya, time kami tidur dekat Last Water Point tu dia mimpi ada orang datang dekat dia bagi makanan. Saya diam jelah waktu tu. Entah-entah kami mimpi lelaki yang sama huhu 

Pasal cahaya yang saya nampak tu sampai sekarang saya tak pasti benda apa. Dan kalau dia serangga, kenapa dia kena lalu jalan manusia? Kenapa dia kena mendaki ke puncak waktu tu? 

White Water Rafting

Bulan Disember, sebulan lepas mendaki KorGa, saya kembali menyertai GEMA Selangor Backpackerz menyertai aktiviti White Water Rafting (WWR) dekat Sungai Slim, Perak. Yeay! (lol. Tibaah)

Sebab aktiviti kali ni takdelah bermalam atau melibatkan trekking dalam hutan, saya memang totally tak menjangka apa-apa benda pelik berlaku.

Sepanjang program, alhamdulillah, kami cuma menyusur sungai dan takde benda yang pelik-pelik pun berlaku. 

Bila balik pun, takde apa yang berlaku. Malam tu pun takde apa-apa berlaku. Tidur nyenyak je.
Tapi esok malamnya ada berlaku sesuatu...

Waktu tidur, saya bermimpi. Dalam mimpi tu saya tengah menyusur Sungai Slim tu sorang-sorang. Waktu tu hari cerah, sama macam waktu kami menyusur sungai tu sehari sebelumnya. Tapi kali ni langsung takde orang. Saya sorang je. Bunyi sunyi. 

Waktu tu saya berdiri atas rakit. Daripada rakit tu, saya nampak dekat dalam hutan ada benda berkelubung putih berjalan mengikut rakit yang saya naik. Rupa dia sebijik macam anggota Ku Klux Klan. Tapi dia tak berjalan, dia menyusup tengah-tengah pokok. Bila rakit saya laju, dia laju. Bila rakit perlahan, dia perlahan. 



 Ginilah rupa makhluk kelubung putih tu

Tiba-tiba rakit saya bergerak dari tengah sungai ke tebing, dan pada waktu yang sama, lembaga berkelubung putih tu pun bergerak dari tengah hutan ke tebing sungai. Dan bila rakit saya tu sampai je ke tebing, saya bertembung dengan lembaga berkelubung tu. Saya terus terjaga.

Bila terjaga ke alam nyata tu, saya terus kena tindih. Tak boleh bergerak. Allah! Makhluk dari mana ni.

Saya baca ayat kursi dalam hati, bergelut dengan makhluk tu. Rasa macam dia cucuk-cucuk belikat saya dekat belakang. Lepas habis baca ayat Kursi, benda tu pun pergi. Tengok jam dekat dinding, tepat pukul 5 pagi. Ada ke benda mengikut dari Slim River tu – saya dok fikir sendiri. 

Haish. Trip yang tak hardcore, tak masuk hutan sangat pun boleh terkena. Apalah nasib. 

Tapi lepas beberapa kali terkena lepas balik rumah, saya rasa terkena sebab badan terlalu penat dan fikiran kita masih melayang terfikir pasal hutan. Itu yang mimpi pun bukan-bukan. Kalau ada gangguan, mungkin benda yang bukan dari hutan tu ambil kesempatan mengganggu time badan kita terlalu letih. #teorisendiri

Apapun, actually taklah semua kali masa pergi trip saya kena kacau. Tapi bila kena tu, mesti rasa macam tobat taknak dah pergi next trip. Tapi bila orang ajak join, tetiba terlupa semua pengalaman pahit, nak ikut jugak hahaha

Wallahualam. So far itu jelah cerita mistik yang saya nak cerita. Takdelah mistik sangat kan compare dengan pengalaman orang lain, tapi itulah yang buat saya bersyukur (mungkin jugak tak mitik pun hewhew). 

Renung-renungkan dan selamat beramal! Kalau ada pengalaman mistik lagi (mintak simpang!) nanti saya update part 3 pulak bahahaha!

Assalamualaikum dan byeee!





02 October 2017

THE HARMS OF BOARDING SCHOOL



I once read a blog entry by Amir Hafizi on his blog, The Malay Male. To be frank, I don’t remember how I got to know him, but it is probably just like how I ended up following everybody else on twitter; I met an interesting retweet, went to the source of it, found other interesting tweets by that person, decided that I liked what I see and pushed the button ‘Follow’.

So this blogpost by Amir Hafizi, detailing about his life living in a boarding school. I’m a closeted boarding school opponent, I couldn’t come out because some of my friends in my close circle made it clear that whenever I feel there’s something wrong with my alma mater, it indicates that I am the one with the problem, not the school.

It’s incredible that even though we went to the same school, we could experience different sorts of things.

Amir Hafizi speaks of how in boarding school, you are being broken down into pieces, just so you could be built up again. I found this quote to strike some chords. This is probably the most precise quote about my experience in boarding school that I could not come up with myself.

My friend, a fellow boarding school hater and I had this conversation times and times again. We studied the details of our experiences and the outcome of those experiences to our lives. We both went to boarding school when we were both 12.

We reached a consensus that boarding school changes our family dynamics. And based on my own observation among my closest friends, this is mostly true for friends in a close-knit family with a single breadwinner-father and a stay-at-home mother, with a relatively lower family income bracket.

Friends with working parents, or whose family incomes are significantly higher, usually do not face the same magnitude of the changes. True, they did mention there are changes here and there after they left home for boarding school, but the initial state of their relationship with their parents are usually not, for lack of better term, as closer or unique as those from lower income families, therefore the changes are not that substantial.

Those with working parents are used to being left alone, that they already built their defense mechanism way long before those kids with a stay-at-home mother who spent almost all their time at home with their mother. A working mother would also mean the mother would split the time between her career and her family, while the housewife mother dedicates all her time solely for her household, which will result in different upbringing for the kids. The difference of these two lifestyles might be subtle, but it’s significant.

The kids from a lower income family background, the kampong kids if I may– those kids of fishermen, peneroka FELDAs, farmers, rubber tappers – are usually the one with the most attachment to their family. I believe this is so because the hardship of their family would give these kids a deeper emotional connection to their parents who struggled to feed and clothe them, and this gives an elevated, raw emotional experience for the kids who understood their parents’ unconditional love in the form of sacrifice on a day to day basis.

The same experience may or may not occur to the kids from family who are well off with a steady monthly income.

Once a kid went to boarding school, adapting to an environment where they are no longer protected by their family would mean they have to cope with their life on their own. Like it or not, those kids need to adjust their principles, built up their own defense mechanism, and have to rewire their brain to cope with the sudden changes, and swiftly change their attitude and behavior to suit a life in a boarding school. Most of the pressure to change is attributed to peer pressure and social factors.

Kids who are often being left by their parents found this easier to do, since they already understood the concept that being left by their parents is a fact of life. In fact, some of them are already well prepared and don’t need as much adjusting as their peers.

Kids with a close-knit family bonding are left struggling on their own. It is interesting to note that in order for these kids to adapt to their surroundings, they have to turn off some of their emotions. Emotions that are holding these kids from moving on and adapting to their new environment is ironically, or tragically, is their attachment to their family.

The kids are usually the silent type who often fall homesick. The wealthier kids, whose family can pay them a visit every once in a month and who can go back home during the short holidays have a different perspective of life in boarding school. They understood that they could always meet their parents albeit living afar.

The poor kids, whose parents could not afford the long commute had to live with the fact that family will not come into the picture until maybe 3 months later, and the single connection that they would share during those periods are telephone calls.

In order for these kids to adapt, they would severe, if not reconfigure, their bonds with their family. This is the first step for them to move on and build their defense mechanism to survive boarding school.

They would first start off by understanding that family will not come into help, and no matter how much they cried or suffered, no matter how high they fall, their mother will not come comforting them. They have to accept that their triumphs, insecurities, failures and history will not be shared by their family in real time. They would slowly come into this realization after a few telephone calls, after they felt like sharing those stuff on the phone won’t do the cut.

The second step is abandoning their attachment to the family, and oftentimes, this come off as a natural process. This gradual process involves spending fewer time calling their parents at home, forgetting their family members’ birthdays, skipping family meetups and functions, not that they had the luxury of attending and finally, this conditioning to the absence of their family’s significance in their experience in boarding school would lead to the reconfiguring or severance altogether of the familial bonds.

When they are home again, these kids struggled to fit into their own family to continue where they have left off. Since at this point they spent more time in schools more than at home, their default behavior is the one in boarding school while their personality at home is their second. The confusion could lead the kids to believe that they are somehow hypocritical, and it could make them believe that they have outgrown the needs to express themselves to their own kin.

The kids in their early teens are not well equipped to handle the boarding school environment since they are still in completion of their delicate stage. Their emotional states are not matured enough during this phase that going to boarding schools ill prepared in terms of emotions and mental capacity will do them more harm than good. Going to boarding school when they are barely 13, still developing and in their impressionable stage, in dire need of their parents’ guidance and instillation of family values, the kids are at the mercy of their surroundings to shape their adolescence.  

A documentary by National Geographic once highlighted the increase of elephants’ attacks on human. It seems like these elephants which are known for their gentle nature suddenly have the guts to kill even their caretakers – although it was always a probability, it had never occurred before. Elephants would not attack humans they have bonded with. According to the documentary, once they killed a human, it would forever change the psychology of the elephants after they discovered the true destructive extent of their strength.  

It was later revealed that the elephants that attacked the humans are mostly orphaned. They theorized that without the presence of a mother to nurture and control the elephants to shape their behavior during their pubescence, the elephants would run rampant. An absence of a mother figure in their final growing phase would damage the elephant’s emotional well-being that they are capable of violence. 

This theory seems to quite sufficiently explain the violence that happens in boarding school. Without adequate supervision and lack of maternal love to keep them in check, the kids are left to their own devices. Incidence of bullying, beating, and mental torture are not uncommon in boarding schools. Inability to fit in, to be deemed as an outcast would mean a kid is more prone as a victim to these social clashes.

Not only bullying, the social structure itself in boarding schools favours seniority. I remember once my teacher deemed us as rude for addressing our senior incorrectly, instead of calling them ‘abang’ we called them ‘korang’ – they were one year older. This kind of mentality even at management level is not helping in bridging the gap between the students. Boarding schools are so chockfull with these sorts of idiosyncrasies that a kid could become lost in learning the ropes and navigating the multilayered, confusing structure it could cost them friends, respect, and ultimately happiness.

Speaking of which, happiness is not the basis of boarding schools. We were reminded from day one that boarding schools are where you are going to endure hardships. These hardships would break you down into your elements, and when you are built up again, you are no longer your former self. Your new self would learn how to survive, to live, and to feel happy again by abandoning your past.

Despite all these, I do believe that boarding schools had taught me lessons that are useful in life, giving me great friends who I had cherished all the way till today, and it gave me bittersweet memories to remember for a lifetime. However, if I had the chance to live it again, I would say no.

Nevertheless, I opine that these only apply to boarding schools for children aged below 15. When I was 16, I changed school and though the circumstances were similar in many ways, I found it less stressful since kids at this age were more mature and adaptable. In fact, it was at this school I found that you could be happy and breathe easy in boarding schools despite the hardships.

All in all, I strongly urge parents to contemplate the option of sending their kids to boarding schools after UPSR. If their kids adapted well in boarding schools, perhaps they are the bully.

25 September 2017

RELATIVITY

“In one sentence, describe yourself.”

This could be the simplest question ever at interviews. I have a script for this. I would tell them my full name, my highest qualification, what is my career objective, and simply explain how I could fit into the company based on what I know about them.

When I am all alone, I actually struggle to define myself.

I notice that I always view myself as an extension of somebody else or an organization. Like all I amounted to was just another fragment of a bigger picture. 

“I’m a student of UPM.”
“I joined a club called al-Biruni back then in university.”
“I used to work with this company specializing in environmental monitoring.” 

This is the gross idea. Going several layers deeper, I would behave according to what I belief is expected of me. I do not assert my preferences, always agreeing. I always ridicule my existence to the level of insignificance. 

It’s like when your roommate asks you if he could switch off the lights, and you tell him go ahead even when you have an important submission tomorrow. Oh I could cram this paper tomorrow morning. I don’t want him to feel uncomfortable or feeling that I am unaccommodating. Even small matters like this could trigger a war in my head. 

See? I adjust to my surroundings more than I shape them. 

I do not plan, I always go with the flow. In the long run, I began to wonder if ever I have a personality of my own, preferences of doing things. Like people telling you “I have this principle that I hate liars more than I hate people who procrastinate.” And you wondered how did he mold his conscience to have this notion, when you just don’t have anything that you’re holding onto in your life. 

“I accept and judge them all the same. People do bad things – liars and procrastinators both.” Is what I would tell them, to give out an illusion that I have my own principles as well, when I simply don’t know if I do have that stand.

People could be mad when you crossed the line, but do I myself have that line? Is it a sign of cowardice, that the reason I am so soft spoken and mellowed was because I am afraid to assert my stand that there was no line to cross to start with? But more importantly, do I have anything that I would stand for?

It’s like a meeting, where people would throw in suggestions and justify their opinion by reasoning. I often find it hard to do this, that if my suggestion is indeed accepted, I would offend those who got theirs rejected. Or worse yet, my idea would come under scrutiny and it would destroy me. I ended up not speaking out my mind, and accepted whatever decision that we (they) collectively came out with just to avoid conflict. Yunuss once pointed this out, and it left me speechless.

I come to people’s house just to see that they have a clear idea on what they want to do with their house – a sign that they have a clear idea on what they want to do with their life. Their method of housekeeping, arranging things, interior design. This should be placed here, this should be kept there.
Just who taught you this? How did you come to this conclusion? 

I have no sense of direction, that I believe that everything would turn out okay no matter which road you take. This applies to everything in my life that I could not decide if believing this is bad or good. Oftentimes, being indecisive frustrates people more than it accommodates them. 

“Where do you want to go to eat?”
“I don’t mind.”
“Just give me suggestions. I’m tired of being the one who thinks.”

See? It taught me that being accommodating sometimes actually do more harm than good. I always wait for the final act before I would take action on my own. Wait until the meeting is over, I’m going to meet the chairman and tell him that I have another point that he must consider – just so I won’t have to spark a conflict in the meeting room.

Wait till the lights are off and I’m going to know what to do with this unfinished paper – to apply for a postponement or to wake up very early tomorrow and finish it. 

Like everything in my life is expendable, that there is no real tension, just me keep delaying deadlines, lowering standards and me accommodating everybody’s opinion that nobody would disagree with me because heck, I would agree first with every shit that they come out with no matter how ridiculous.

This lack of discipline, devoid of opinions often threw me in unexpected situations. 

“Hey, could you join me hiking next week? To the highest peak of Titiwangsa ranges?”
“Well, I have no strong reasons to say no..but I have doubts..”
“Then please follow this trip.” 

I ended up joining the trip though I felt like it was a crazy, spur-of-the-moment decision. But just like I said, no matter which road that I took, I always ended up okay. This offers me a reason to feel safe or at least optimistic about my indecisiveness.

Methodological approach sounds like a myth in my life as I always tackle matters with sudden spikes of energy, and when that spike is nonexistent, I could not be bothered. I ended up not finishing what I’ve started because the energy has run out, methodological be damned.

So as an attempt to define myself, I wrote this one down, with one big question in my head. Am I relative to other people, or do I stand as my own? 

I simply could not make up my mind.
  






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