Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Making Friends

Making friends is a skill kids learn at a very young age.

So as adults, we should be really good at it since we have had years of practice.


After all, after only 3 years of doing my own cooking and my own baking, I am getting pretty good and more importantly, pretty confident at producing edible stuff from my
So surely at the age of 30+ I should be a master of 'friendship building' and a specialist in 'the art of making friends'?

No, not at all.

It's not the same when it comes to making friends, is it?

Back at home, where one is surrounded by people who speak one's language, practice the same religion and tradition and when one goes to work - surrounded by perhaps, people of the same level of education and skill, one might find it easier to make friends...

...as compared to here, where
one is surrounded by people who doesn't speak one's language, doesn't REALLY practice the same religion and definitely not the same tradition and when one goes to work - surrounded by perhaps, people of the same level of education and skill, but have a different way of doing things, a different way of thinking and definitely different ideals.

Thus, the reason why, over here, one looks for people from one's own country and one's own religion and culture to make friends with.

Most of the time.

Anyway, I do it so that I can cakap Melayu. Bosan la asyik kena cakap omputih je ni..Dengan anak kena cakap omputih, keluar rumah cakap omputih, TV cakap omputih. Internet cakap omputih. Bloody fed up with cakap omputih ni.

I know I can write pretty well in the language but when it comes to speaking it...I tend to be a little bit formal.....I think. And that's no good when you're trying to make friends.

Mr S and I have been trying to increase our circle of Malaysian friends lately. We have a group of people that we're good friends with but we realised a long time ago that we weren't happy to be close to just a few people. We want to have lots of friends and know a variety of people and we want to socialise a lot. What we don't want to do is to belong to a little 'clique'.

The problem is, Mr S and I are both pretty shy and reserved people. I know, Mr S can be clearly seen as a 'shy-guy' but one would never guess that I am the shy type as well. Suffice to say, we have not learnt a lot about making friends at all, all this time.

But both Mr S and I have been 'forcing' ourselves to come out of our shells and honestly, it's been a learning experience.

In the pursuit of new friendships these last few months, we have met quite a few people. We have tried to open up and be friendly - paste a smile on our faces, ask polite questions, try to make conversations - even invited them to our home. Some of the things that we had to do weren't easy for us but we tried.

And it has been good.

It's funny though, how some people just don't want to make friends.

Not many, just a few people we met. These are the types of people, when you meet them at gatherings, they don't put on a friendly face, they don't ask questions about you i.e. they don't show any interest to know you
..they just want to talk to their own circle of friends and can't even be bothered to maniskan muka at you. Some people are just satisfied with their own group of friends, I guess...

But I find it funny lah...

After all kitakan sama-sama duduk di perantauan...ramah2 kan lah mulut and manis-maniskan lah muka tu....It's not such a huge community, after all.

Tak paham sungguh. Tapi..entah2 depa pun malu kot....tak tau lah...

But still, it has been good. I don't know what was the perception of people about me but what's important is that I tried and I quite enjoyed myself.

All I wanna say for now is, bring on more people! I want to improve my lousy friendship
making skills...

He he he..pathetic.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Raya has been good


Although on the first day of raya - we celebrated raya on Tuesday - Mr S had to go to work as it was his last day in the office.

That's right. Mr S has moved to another company - into the industry, so to speak. But already he's complaining about his new job - boring, he said.


I myself would never complain if my work was repetitive or unexciting, IF my salary and perks were good. But not Mr S. That's the reason he ended working in the UK in the first place.

Anyway, thank God some friends came for raya while Mr S was at the office and some friends invited us over too and we went beraya as soon as Mr S came back from work - with lots of stuff and cards from his office mates - so it was a 'raya' for us nonetheless, alhamdulillah.

I made 5 types of kuih raya and friends from Malaysia gave 4 other types so we had plenty of kuih raya to go around and so I thought I really should invite lots of friends around this raya.

Plus, we had a sort of house re-decorating period during Ramadhan.

Suddenly I felt so desperate to make the house feel like a home instead of just a roof above our heads. Somehow I was contented all this while simply to leave the house as it is -
alah..this is not our own place and we wont be staying here for long pun.. was the attitude.

Not anymore.

I was tired of living in a 'rumah sewa' environment. I reached the point where I felt that I didn't belong anywhere - not back in Malaysia and not in my own home. So we made some changes. Bought some furniture. Put up new curtains. Bought frames and hung up some pictures and a large mirror. Some plants and fresh flowers to spruce up the place a bit. Even dug very, very deep and dragged out what little talent I had for art and painting and produced some 'artwork' to be hung on my walls...ho ho ho. Couldn't find anything that we really, really like at the shops for the
price that we liked so decided to just paint my own!

I married a generous man. To him, we were fine the way we were but still he acquiesced to my demands. Of course, it was his bank account that had to bear all these expenditures. And he was the one who helped me to hang the curtains, the pictures, the mirror etc etc Thank you Mr S - again! Love you!

So since the house was looking it's best ever since we moved in and we had plenty of kuih raya - we decided to invite friends over - not just the usual suspects but almost everyone we know on this side of London. I cooked loads of food and we had guests over from the early afternoon till about 1 am in the morning. I was tired for days after but it was worth it.

Just some pics for the people back at home...

Pagi raya

Budak-budak datang main Wii on hari raya

Just to show the pics we hung on the wall

And here's the result of 3 nights with paints and brushes - not great but I'm happy about them!

The kuih table during our 'open house' - the main dishes were served in the kitchen as usual!

Some of our guests...