Browsing Category: Random Ramblings

Sambal Queen Turun Padang

Am not really huge on Sports Days. But this year, I must say I was pretty impressed with Son #1’s school Sports Day. Why was I impressed?

When I arrived, there was a teacher on hand to usher me to my seat and gave me the Sports Day programme together with my Lucky Draw number. Yes! There was a Lucky Draw with pretty good prizes too. Once I was seated, another teacher handed me a bottled mineral water. (Brownie points!)

See my hot pink lucky number? Too bad the hot pink wasn’t “ONG” enough for me to win.

The march pass was well executed. The kids did a pretty good job, not haphazard like “kambing” (goat in Malay) marching everywhere. The interesting part of the march pass was how creative each of the houses represented themselves. One house had a whole bunch of them dressed up with a turtle shell ala Ninja Turtles. Another house carried Captain America shields and one even had Spiderman being carried on a make shift sedan chair. How cool is that?! Then, they even had a “lafaz ikrar” (Sportsman’s declaration) with all the flag bearer circling the podium ala Olympics. Nice touch to remind the sports(wo)men on the true spirit of sportsmanship.

Check out the Captain America shields!
The Ninja Turtles inspired shells. Cute!
Spidey in a sedan chair. I wonder what happened to his web swinging abilities.
Son #1 is somewhere in the midst of the ‘Pengawas” (Prefects) group.

There was even a lion dance that consisted of current students of the school who are trained by a former student. They may not be world class standard but they won many hearts today when they distributed sweets to all. My first time receiving sweets from a lion. Haha!

This was actually the grand finale with some auspicious wishes written on the scroll.
This is the first time I see lions giving away sweets.
I got some too! Thank you, Hot Pink Lion!

When the refreshments were served, I initially thought that it was meant for the VIPs but turns out that it was meant for all the guests. There was Nasi Lemak, curry puffs, donuts and fried bananas. The Nasi Lemak coconut rice was aromatic and tasty. The sambal was more like a gravy style and it was spicy and good! I sat by the field and watched the relay. Was a rather pleasant picnic-like atmosphere. 🙂 The hot sweet tea was a nice pairing with the spicy, savoury Nasi Lemak.

Table for VIPs.
Droolsome worthy Nasi Lemak.

I didn’t stay till the end as I had to rush off to the office. But I sure enjoyed this Sports Day. It was well organised, the teachers were hospitable and the students’ creative march pass is nothing I’ve seen before. Oh, the Nasi Lemak and lion dance made this a Sports Day I won’t forget for a long time. Kudos to the teachers and students of SMJK Katolik, Bentong!

*”turun padang” is an expression loosely translated as going down to the sports field

Of Bentong Aunties & Rotis

Can you spot the t-shirt and undies stall at the corner below?

So, this morning, after dropping the sons off at school, I thought that it would be fun to try to become a Bentong auntie and walk around the morning market as it did look interesting when I passed it the last few times.

The market was pretty busy when I arrived. Numerous food stalls lined the street I was walking along. A flower stall caught my eye and made a mental note to stop on my way back. (Love, loveee flowers!!) The first stall I stopped by was crowded with ladies grabbing t-shirts and undies(!!). Have forgotten what the buying frenzy at the morning market is like. Quite fun to watch actually. You have seasoned aunties haggling like pros and the odd uncle who looks rather lost in the midst of excited ladies. 

Pardon, the rather blurry photo. Not any filter effects but the lack of Kopi-O and low sugar levels. 😛

There is a nice variety of food stalls for brekkie to cater to different taste buds – Nasi Lemak, Malay Kuih, Chee Cheong Fun, dumplings, economy fried noodles and other usual brekkie staples. But.…the thing that caught me attention was the Roti Canai stall. It was a simple stall for takeaways only manned by 2 friendly fellas, one expertly tossing and flipping Rotis in the large flat skillet and one handling orders, wrapping the hot-off-the-skillet Rotis with Dhall Curry or Sambal Sardin. It was the aroma wafting from the hot skillet that drew me to this stall, as if hypnotised. Heheh…

Do you know what the Rotis are tossed about and made into this? The Abang (Older brother in Malay) at the stall told me that it will make the roti softer.
I wish you could smell the lovely Rotis! Heavenly!

As I stood there waiting for my order, I overheard the loud friendly banter of two older uncles complaining about parking summons. I was reminded of how friendly and warm the people in smaller towns are. Something I grew up with but is sorely missing in larger cities where I used to live all my adult life. People are more courteous and helpful over here and there were many times when cars would just stop and let me and my kids cross the road.

Yeah…. I can get used to this. 🙂

School Transfer 101

In light of our recent move out of state, I thought I’d share a bit on the school transfer procedure (Malaysia’s education system that is). It was surprisingly less painful than I thought.

  1. Get Form P.U. (A)275 from your kid’s school. (See a sample of this form here
  2. Fill up all the relevant information needed. And you will need photocopies of your marriage certificate and your child’s IC or birth certificate. (3 copies each)
  3. You will then need to submit the completed form and copies of your marriage certificate to the school. The school will then proceed to type 4 copies of the form. This process can take anywhere from one day to a week as it depends on the school. For my kids, we managed to get the completed forms in about 3 days.
  4. Once you have your documents ready, go to the Jabatan Pendidikan of the district of your kid’s new school. Here, the officer will verify your documents, assign the new school and approve your transfer. (On your transfer form, you need to provide 2 different options.) Our school transfer was approved in about 20 minutes.
  5. After the Jabatan Pendidikan approves your transfer, you will need to go to the new school to hand over the transfer form together with the marriage certificate. The school principal will review your kid’s academic performance and assign the class to your kids according to their latest exam results. If your school transfer coincides with the new school year, your will be given a book list.
  6. You then need to go back to your kid’s old school to submit the approved transfer form and to collect report card, “kad kesihatan” and other records. These records need to be handed over to the new school.

Our school transfer process took slightly more than a week as the Jabatan Pendidikan officer-in-charge was away for a conference in Genting.

Tips on choosing a new school

  • Go to the Ministry of Education website and look at the list of schools in the area.
  • Do your research online. Look at the school’s website and Facebook to get some rough idea of the school.
  • Make friends with the locals and ask them regarding the best schools.
  • Pay a visit to the schools that you have shortlisted. It would be good to go with your child to allow him/her to get a feel of the new school.

This serves as a general guideline for school transfers and do note that there maybe slight differences as some schools may release the report card, “kad kesihatan” and other records even before the approved forms are submitted.

Hope this helps and good luck with your transfer!