Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: Starry Night

There were hundreds of them in front of him. All eyes were on him. They awaited eagerly. He made them wait. He screened the floor. It was always the youngs sitting at the front. No stage was necessary to make him feel superior. He could just feel it. That nostalgic feeling.

It had been years since the last time he was doing this. He was really nervous about it. He thought his time was over but when an old friend came knocking on his door, he couldn't say no.

It wasn't a big part that he played that night. Yet, it was a really significant moment. He wasn't the real star that night. The real star was a group from a neighbourhood country. He knew little about them before they met eye to eye but when they did, he realised that they had one thing in common.

He couldn't thank more to all the people involved that night; his partner who had been brilliant with his artistic instinct, the organisers, an old friend and of course the real gem that night, Izzatul Islam.

He almost couldn't believe it that, the event that night went really smoothly despite the impromptu preparations. There was not enough time, not enough people to handle the event and considering the nature of event, there was not enough time to prepare for it but yet it still happened. It only took him a glance to the sky to figure out whose hands were handling those difficulties. Subhanallah!

The night felt beautiful and he thought of what more wonders awaiting in the future.

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: Dream

He was there wearing an expensive black suit. Black and white. He didn't really love the colour but still he could feel the pride in wearing it. Sitting beside him was a really nervous defendant. He believed that guy was innocent.

It was time for the man in wig to give his judgment. Innocent. He inhaled deeply to surpress his excitement and exhaled in relief. He looked at the opponent and smiled triumphantly. Justice had been served. It was like a dream.

To his horror, it really was nothing but a dream. He couldn't afford those expensive suits. He had never been inside a real court. The nearest he had been was the lobby. It was just a dream.

The reality was far from that. The reality was he woke up early everyday and drove his seasoned car to a place he had never dreamt of before. The school. It was his battlefield with everyday struggles while craving for his dream to become true.

That struggles made him almost forget about his shattered dream. He had become more and more attached to the school. The people, the children, the place. There was something about this place that made him felt safe.

Until one day, that dream came knocking again. He was about to begin his class when one of his children asked him a question.

"Teacher, did you ever dream of being here?"

He couldn't answer the question. He couldn't lie too. With a fake smile he tried to swallow the reality. It was painful as hell.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Diary of A Seasoned Car: Roar!

Nissan Sunny 120Y. That 1983 model car was as old as the driver. Rusty voices annoyingly disturbed other road users. Such nuisance was understandable. The driver understood it.

The engine was still working although the strenght was fading. He loved the car and decided it was to time for a total make-over.

Considering his financial ability, he had to do it phase by phase. First of all, he wanted to get rid of the noisy roaring caused by some leakage to the exhaust pipe. That thing had to be replaced.

The journey began at 10.30 am in a serene Saturday morning. He didn't really know where to go so he asked his old man to facilitate him. Together, they went to the usual mechanic. Due to lack of tools and equipments, the mechanic suggested another workshop and they took the advice.

Situated at the side of Jalan Reko, the workshop was easy to find. There was a lot of exhaust pipes could be seen inside it. As described by the usual mechanic, they were the specialists.

They took less than an hour to make the repair. At the cost of RM 150, the annoying coughing was no more. The car was partly revived. The driver was fully satistfied. TG could be 'young' again.

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: Teacher's Day

Once upon a time, he used to persuade his parents to buy a lot of gifts for his teachers. He eagerly wrapped the presents with the help of his mother. The wrapping looked clumsy but there was no question about his sincerity. He loved his teachers.

This time around, things were different. Instead of wrapping a present, he would be doing the opposite. His hands were full with presents. His stomach, with foods. It was not just him. His colleagues were also having the same symptoms.

From day one, the feeling blossomed into something mutual. Love. He became more and more attached to the children, something he tried to avoid when he stepped into this profession. It was not because he hated commitment. It was a necessity. He realised one day, he would have to leave them. He would hurt them so bad to make him regret it for the rest of his life.

The future for him was an irony. He wanted the children to become better persons than him but at the same time he was terrified that he would have no chance to see it with his own eyes.

He sat on at a corner with a plate of unfinished moist chocolate cake on the table. He looked at his children happily chatting with each other while enjoying the meals. Slowly he tried to swallow the painful reality. Slowly he wonder the pleasure behind such pain.

He was waiting for a present. A special present.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: English Week

Teaching English as a second language was not an easy task. We had to pause several times to make sure that what we taught was listened to and understood. It was a really challenging task. Patience was always at stake.

So, creative ways were invented to ensure effective learning. Children nowadays are different. A thin rattan cane is not the immediate answer to their development unlike old days. A pinch on their cheek and the teachers will start receiving enormous assault from the parents. That's one of the biggest challenge in a profession as a teacher.

All that angers were kept deep inside their hard. Slowly, they developed a rationale and overcame that disturbing emotion. God created humans with special ability. A mind to think and a heart to emphatise. It was a really tiring process for some but as teachers, it was inevitable.

Thus, he joined the other teachers under the English Panitia brainstorming the best creative ways to make learning English cool. Again, the process was energy and time consuming. They managed to meet twice to finally deliver the best activities for English Week.

The pre-event went as planned. He filled the school building with promotional posters. Students started asking him questions. He just smiled and said, "Just wait for it. It's something BIG!"

As the event kicked off however, not all thing went as planned especially with the activities in which he was in charge. There was a lot of last minutes changes. Things became a little bit out of his hands. Oh, he felt so sorry for those children who were really eager to join the fun but yet he had to deny them.

Despite that defect (he knew none from others), all in all, English Week had became an illustrious event for him since joining this profession. He saw the unexpected. The Speaker's Corner was hot and sizzling with unpolished talents.

It was a really fun week. The teachers really worked hand in hand to make the event successful. He had never seen such enthusiasm before. They really loved their job and he hope he could imitate such passion throughout the remainder of his tenure here.

The only regret was however, he still felt that he had yet to fully deliver. He knew there are still more of him inside. He just needs to discover. Yes, he must.

He must dream BIG, plan BIGGER and achieve the BIGGEST. And the BIGGEST achievement is of course, MARDHATILLAH.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: Judged!

A big mouth, a watch, a hanged-man and a book of statutes were chosen to symbolise himself by his old friends. Those symbols corresponded with his educational background in law.

He was deemed to be talkative (the big mouth), precise and punctual (the watch), knowledgable of the law (the book of statutes) and punishing bad people (the hanged-man). This was how people judged him then.

Standing there by himself, his educational background had little to do with what he was facing now. He was judged again. All plans went haywire and he could feel that he had lost his grip. He could only sigh and nervously waiting for the result.

As he expected, there was much flaws. Technically, as one of the freshies, those flaws could be forgiven. He realised that there was still a lot of room for him to improve. He felt relieved because he knew that he was yet to reach his peak despite the fading color of his hair.

But one comment really stung his conciousness. He knew that his pupils loved him but the rationale behind that love was a little big worrying. It was a real big question mark. An unsolved mystery.

It was never his intention to make them loved him because of his jokes. He didn't think that he he had that much sense of humour to make laughable jokes. He had never been a funny guy. But, yet, jokes were still used to attract his students to what he taught. It became a worrying realisation that the students might be attracted to him more rather than his teaching.

He cleared his mind and made some reevaluation. There might be the slightest of truth in it looking at the overall performance of his students. Some showed some improvement. Some showed none.

That comment had been a reminder for him. He might be loveable but not his teaching. Or he could do otherwise.

However, he knew that they were not the only choices he had. Why not be loveable and at the same time make his teaching loveable?

Looking forward, he understood that he would be facing a new challenge. He felt so excited!

Monday, May 9, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: Cross!

He had been waiting for this moment. Once in five years. The waiting was lenghty enough to make him felt the excitement of the day itself.

Together with his brothers, they marched towards the land. Being far from his country, he had to travelled far. He woke up as early as 4 in the morning. The water was warm enough to make it easier for him to clean up himself. But the unfortunate still happened. He slipped and fell onto the bathroom floor. He managed to break a bath sink on his way down.

The other members of the family woke up and wondering what had happened. The truth made them burst into laughter. He could only scratched his head.

The journey from his family house to his homeland finally began. The whole 5 hours that it took was full of thought of the accident earlier. He wondered whether it was a bad sign.

At about 11 a.m, he went to the polling station with his brothers. He was excited. It was only the second time he would vote.

He went through the usual procedure. Along the way, he met some familiar faces during his NS days. He passed up his slip together with his ID. His name was there on the list. Then, he was given the polling paper.

He took less than a minute to make his choice. He put the paper inside the polling box. He smiled in relief. He thought he had done a good job.

Later, he was joined by his brothers. One of them asked him, "Did you tick of did you cross?"
It took a moment before something struck his mind. "Oh, my God!"

Now he realised what the accident that morning tried to signal him. Wasted. Five years and a 'tick'!

"Well done!" he said sarcastically to himself.

When the result came out, 1288 of the votes for his constituency were spoilt. He looked at the number with full of regret. He believed that he was one of them.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: Moving On

From a boy to a grown up. From there to here. From a graduate trainee, to a special constabulary to a teacher. Life for him was all about moving around. He had never stopped at one place for so long. It seems that he was destined to be a wayfarer.

He thought that with all the movements, he hadn't been at static. He felt dynamic. And he was happy living with that perception until a student of him asked him one question.

"Teacher, have you ever thought of building a new life?"

He smirked at the question but trully amazed that a 10-year-old girl could come out with such question.

"What do you mean?" He asked for clarification.

"You know. You have to move on, aren't you?"

He had a little knock on his head with that question. For him, this was something new.

"Teacher, how old are you now?" That little girl asked him again. He could see her friends giggled at her back.

"I thought I've told you of my age."

"I know. Poor you."


Ignoring the question, the girl asked him once more, "Teacher, why aren't you married? My brother is younger than you and he was married."

He was stunned. He looked back and reminisced of all his old friends. Some of them were already blessed with two children. And they were either younger or of the same age as him. He looked back at the girl and began to swallow the meaning of her words. When she said moving on, it was not about moving around. It was about settling down with a person and began a new journey together for eternity.

He smiled at this bright little child. "When the time comes, when I meet the right person, insyaAllah, I will move on."

The little girl giggled with her friend. She seemed glad to hear that. "We can't wait."

"Of course, you can."

There was a sigh. He was relieved. At the same time, he was also burdened with one question, "When, oh when that moment will come? When, oh when will you appear?"

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: Home

The definition of home had always been vague for him. Was it the place where he was born? Or was it the place where he was raised? People from both the former and the latter kept questioning him of where does his loyalty lie. Where's home?

Being in both world had not been easy for him. Perhaps, people were looking at him with much suspicion to his loyalty. For them, he had to choose a side. He had to choose his colour.

Some people from the soil he was raised, perceived him as a person coming from a damned land. Due to his naivity, he didn't realise that he was discriminised. They took some of his right. They even played with his dignity.

Despite such ill-treatment, he kept a belief that this was his home. He had found more friends than foes. He found love.

Then, one day he had to return to the place he was born. To serve the nation. At that time, he was a grown up. He felt so proud that despite limited knowledge of that land, he was still called upon to form an integral part of the nation.

However, he was dejected for the emptiness he saw. People there had lost some hearts. People had lost their humanity. People had lost faith.

Despite all that, he still believed that this was also his home. His blood was spilled on this soil.

So home for him remained as vague as it was. He didn't care what people say. The only one clear thing for him was.. home is where there's someone waiting for him to come back.

Friday, May 6, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: MASMA (Part 3)

They said it was melancholic. He could only smile cynically to himself. He knew the truth better.

He tried to be sincere in his words but he knew only God could judge that. The prayer was uttered. He chose his mother tongue to form the primary parts of the doa. He raised his hand. He began with basmalah and salawat to his beloved Prophet (PBUH). And then he said...

" Ya Allah Ya Tuhan Kami, Tuhan Sekalian Makhluk, Tuhan Yang Maha Pengasih Lagi Maha Penyayang

Dengan Rahmat dan KeredhaanMu, ampunilah dosa-dosa kami, dosa kedua ibubapa kami, dosa guru-guru kami dan dosa sekalian orang-orang yang beriman. Limpahilah nur dan hidayahMu agar kami tetap di dalam kembara menuju syurgaMu. Agar kami tidak tersesat. Agar kami tidak tersimpang. Agar kami tidak tercampak ke dalam kehinaan dan kemurkaan.

Ya Allah Yang Memperkenan Segala Doa

Kami tadahkan tangan kami dengan harapan dan penuh keyakinan. Kau permudahkanlah segala urusan yang kami rancangkan. Kau cekalkan hati-hati kami dalam mencapai segala yang kami cita-citakan. Kau hindarkan kami daripada segala halangan dan rintangan. Kau jadikanlah kami redha dan menerima segala yang Engkau tentukan. Kau bersihkanlah jiwa kami dari segala sifat yang membawa kebencian dan permusuhan. Kau eratkanlah hati kami dalam usaha meletakkan Islam agama yang diagungkan.

Yang Allah Yang Maha Berkuasa di atas segala-galanya

Kami ini sangat lemah. Berilah kami kekuatan. Kami ini sangat keras, Berilah kami kelunakan. Kami ini sangat bakhil, berilah kami sifat kedermawanan.

Ya Allah

Kau janganlah jadikan dunia cita-cita kami yang utama. Dan janganlah jadikan orang-orang yang zalim sebagai penguasa kami.

Ya Allah Ya Tuhan,

Seandainya ada kebaikan di dalam usaha kecil kami ini, Kau terimalah amalan kami yang secebis ini. Jauhilah kami daripada sifat riya’, ‘ujub dan takabbur. Lindungilah kami daripada berasa puas dengan amalan yang sedikit ini. Limpahilah jiwa-jiwa kami dengan kesungguhan, kesabaran dan ketabahan untuk terus menggali dan menggali dan menemui kepingan-kepingan rahmat dan keredhaanMu untuk kami jadikan bekalan apabila menemuiMu kelak Ya Allah.

Seandainya usaha kami ini masih kurang Ya Allah, bantulah kami untuk melakukan pembaikan. Agar lompong-lompong itu tidak lagi mencacatkan. Lindungilah kami daripada sangka buruk, dengki dan busuk hati. Buangkanlah titik-titik hitam itu daripada hati kami. Sesungguhnya sangkaan-sangkaan tidak mempunyai nilai apa-apa terhadap kebenaran. Kerana sangkaan-sangkaan itu akan menggelapkan hati-hati kami. Supaya kami tidak tersesat dan terjunam ke dalam Jahannam.

Ya Allah Yang Maha Pemurah Lagi Maha Mengasihani

Kami yakin kebenaran akan mengatasi kejahilan. Sebagaimana yang telah kau tunjukkan pada generasi-generasi terdahulu. Dan kami yakin bahawa generasi akan datang juga akan terus memikul amanah ini.

Ya Allah Ya Rabb Al-Malik Al-Quddus As-Salaam Al-Mukmin Al Muhaimin Al-Jabbaar Al-Mutakabbir

Kukuhkanlah institusi Al-Amin Bangi dengan dasar takwa. Suburilah ia dengan baja iman. Kembangkanlah ia dengan pohonan tawadhu’. Tumbuhilah pohonannya dengan putera-puteri yang berjiwa secerah matahari di tengah hari. Hiasilah ia dengan bunga-bungaan mahabbah dan aroma ukhuwwah.

Ya Allah Yang Maha Mengetahui Segala Rahsia dan Yang Nyata

Kami merayu dengan rendah hati dan kelemahan kami. Janganlah kau hina kami kerana dosa yang kami lakukan. Janganlah kau biarkan kami di dalam keadaan kebingungan dan meraba-raba di dalam kegelapan kejahilan. Sinarilah akal kami dengan makrifah dan ilmu pengetahuan. Siramilah jiwa kami Ya Allah dengan sifat takwa dan istiqamah. Balutilah jasad kami dengan kesihatan dan kesejahteraan. Berkatilah rezeki kami yang telah kau kurniakan. Peliharalah kami dan keluarga kami dari segala fitnah dunia dan cubaan.

Ya Allah kami hanya mampu memohon kepadaMu. Dan Kaulah yang Maha Mengetahui dan Maha Berkuasa untuk menentukan apa yang terbaik buat kami."

May Allah hear his prayer.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Untold Story of A Mu'allim: MASMA (Part 2)

The stage had always been his playground. Electrified by watching eyes and listening ears, together with his friends he gave the audience what One Faith was all about. It was not just about entertaining. It was about educating people to think.

But, that was history. He was alone. All alone on this stage. And he was given a different task. He was not there to entertain anymore but nevertheless he was still obliged to serve the same purpose.

In front of hundreds pairs of eyes and ears, he could feel his body trembled. He was so confused to describe it. Was it excitement or was it merely a sign that he was nervous?

When the MC called his name, he walked calmly onto the stage. He opened his netbook and put it on the rostrum. He didn't dare to look down to the crowds. Suddenly, he felt that the stage was too big for him. He suffocated.

He tried to be as calm as possible. He recited the doa which he had prepared earlier. Along the way, he stammered. He lost some of his words. Worse, he almost lost his mind.

He hid his shaking hand behind the rostrum. He felt that he had rushed his recitation. He felt odd but carried on anyway. He just hope the heaven heard his prayer.

There was a sigh of relief as his prayer reached its final dot. He knew it was not his best 'performance' , maybe the worst. Maybe there was a little tiny black dot in his heart which prevented him to do so. In silence, he asked for forgiveness.