Thursday, 17 January 2008


That's probably the prefix word that would describe my feeling.....happy, closed, glad, grateful, submissive, nice, relieved and small. Alhamdulillah, my umrah went well. I was in awe trying to grasp with my own sense of feeling the first time I saw Masjidil Haram. It is indeed, awesome. We've probably seen Kaabah a zillion times but to experience it live, it's a blessing. Looking around at the sheer scale of it, where more than 3 million visitors annually - I am just lost for words trying to grasp on the idea of its total logistics, accomodation and the entire arrangement. Simply amazing. Subhanallah.

I'm thankful to A.Yob for all the arrangements he made, syukran. Abdul Rahman who joined me to Mekah, a Lebanese and 27 years Jeddah resident, is a mechanic himself, started when he was 7. He repaired cars and the likes. Before he dropped me off at the airport, he showed me a trick. We were in his car - manual transmission. He could change gear without having to press the clutch, 2 to 5 and backwards - almost like a semi automatic! Maybe you have seen it before but I certainly haven't. Now, that's really cool.

Another hour to boarding, can't wait to go home now. I miss my sweet and brave hearts. And the heater at home is not working at the moment. Z followed to the exact point on my instruction on trying to operate the so-called-high-tech digital thermostat (which she hates now...haha). I hope it will work. And she will save everyone from the sejukkk.....well done mama!


Wednesday, 16 January 2008


Before Hardy and i got married, he mentioned that one day, he dreams of going to Mecca with me.

Today's Hardy's final day of working in Riyadh. the original plan was for him to come back straight from Riyadh. but he decided to take make a change to his original plans, take a detour to Jeddah and from there, go to Mecca to perform his Umrah. so he'll be coming home a day later, on Friday.

Excited, thrilled, glad, happy, thankful that he got this chance. but at the same time, me being me, i worry. i remembered asking him "how are you gonna get to mekkah?" he said "i'll find my way around, get on a bus, or a cab or something, dont worry". those words made me worry even more, since there wasnt any proper, solid arrangements. he saw me frowning and said, "i'll ask them (his friends in Riyadh) to arrange and help me, shouldnt be any problem, i'm sure there's tonnes of people heading the same direction". i then straight away said "you know, one of my relative went to mekkah and didnt come back!". Hardy being Hardy, he continued teasing me.

I called up my cousin, who works a lot in Saudi and knows his way around there to help me out. almost crying out to him telling that i was worried. as kind and as generous of a person that he always is, he offered Hardy help and send out some of his contacts. comforting. 60% relieved. as usual with our telephone conversations, we laughed and joked about it but his last words hit me. it hit me home. before we ended the phone conversation, he said " Za, jangan risau, Hardy nak buat benda baik, Tuhan sentiasa lindung orang yang nak buat benda baik."

Thank god we were on the phone, if he was to be right infront of me, i wouldnt know where to put myself, duck my head or probably hide under the table. i felt embarrased. for not remembering Him. it made me realize more that we should remember Him, always have faith in Him, as He knows what's best and will always show us the way. how could i ever doubt Him. and why must i worry too much!

I was privillaged. i performed my Umrah when i was 18. there were 3 families, my uncle's, the Ajibs and my family. i wasnt ready back then. not to mention the flights we had to endure before we finally get there (LHR-KL-JB-KL-JED), all in 2 days. i didnt take it seriously. i didnt grab the opportunity with both my two hands, with my soul and full heartedly. back then, i enjoyed shopping in Mecca more, back then i enjoyed looking at the camels more, back then i enjoyed the food more. how silly. but i rememberd my experience. it was only towards the end of it all that i felt close to Him. how i wish i can be with my husband, making the most of Umrah now that i'm wiser. i hope we get to go there again, as a family.

1 week without Hardy. 1 week handling Aidan alone (i wonder how those single parents do it sometimes), 1 week of no serious cooking (my neighbour John said i lost weight!), 1 week of going to bed at half past 10, no later, 1 week of handling errands myself with Aidan tagging along (sending car for repairs, groceries, monthly trip for Aidan's check ups, going to post office etc), and most importantly, 1 week of some serious bonding with Aidan.

What this had done to me was i've bonded more with Aidan. i feel like i love him even more. he's my best friend, my son, my pride and my joy, my son and of course the reason for my backaches, but still i love him more and more. and lately, when we're alone, i cry when he smiles back, i cry when he kisses me, i cry when i look at him sleeping, i cry when he calls out pa-pa-pa-pa.

But despite my cengeng-ness, i'm much calmer, i can handle things my own, i'm a little bit more independent, i dare to drive long distance without Hardy, i have more faith in myself, and i'm making more with what i have. i guess there's a reason for everything. perhaps its about time i should be more confident, perhaps its about time i bond more with Aidan.

2 more days. just 2 more days till Hardy comes home! insyaallah, his dreams of going to Mecca will come true tomorrow. and his dreams of going to Mecca with me will come true one day.

What i prayed for in Mecca some 12 years ago came true. thought he'd never come. took slightly longer though, but it came true! alhamdulillah. (H, if you're reading this before you leave, have a safe journey, make the best of it, we love and we miss you loads, and cant wait for you to come home).

Thank you A.Yob, thank you so so much for all your help and assistance. we love and we miss everyone back home.


Sunday, 13 January 2008

Lost Without You

I did it! i drove to Eindhoven without Hardy sitting next to me for the very first time. my first time driving out of town, long distance, on a highway! after worrying for quite sometime on my first ever long distance drive in the NL, i finally did it! (Sittard to Eindhoven Airport slightly over an hour's drive)
Hardy left for Riyadh yesterday early in the morning, 6.30 am to be exact. and i sobbed like a kid. the taxi came right on the dot. he's away for a whole week. this is actually the first time he's gone for such a long period of time. the most was 3 days, 2 nights. i can sense there's plenty of long trips yet to come. its not that i'm not happy he got this chance to shine, i am, i trully am. its just that i'm gonna miss him oh-so-so much.
For the past one month, we have had the pleasure of the company of my nephew (my cousin's 20 year old son), Faizal. he's currently on his well deserved europe tour (i will write more on him and include some photos in my next posts). and yesterday, we had to say goodbye to him as well, as he was on his next destination - Dublin.
And since Hardy's away, who else is to send Faizal to the airport? he can take the train, of course, but i didnt have the heart to let him be by his own, on the train. i know it'll do him good in gaining his confidence etc but i want to make sure he gets there safe, cheked in and everything. i remembered telling Hardy "i cant, i cant, i cant drive to Eindhoven" in the beginning, and i remembered Hardy telling me "of course you can!" i dont know why i was so afraid. perhaps it was due to the 2 'incidents' i had prior to this, not to mention its left hand drive here, and the fact that our car is a very long one. i doubt myself easily and quite frequently when it comes to driving.
With the help of our Ms. Navigation in the car, i found my way to the airport. it is so so reliable to have one. we travel a lot as a family, and for work (for Hardy). having such system in the car has made travelling much more enjoyable (i dont have to flip through those maps), stress free (no arguing who's right or wrong), and informative as well (learning the shortest route, as well as the detour). we simply cant make it without them! our car's navigation system covers only the Benelux Countries. its simply not enough if we plan to travel beyond Benelux. and so we bought our TomTom early last year.
We've travelled quite a bit for the past year. seriously we did some serious travelling.. and this thing is simply amazing! how modern technology can simplify your journey, your life!
What would i do without you? i'd certainly be lost without you... that's for sure.
2 goodbyes in 1 day, what a weekend! but i did it! i drove back home with Aidan at the back. reached home and straight away thanked God that it was a safe ride. took Aidan out of his car seat and gave him a big huge hug. might be nothing for some of you lot, but this has certainly boost up another 5% of my confidence level!
And since we're on the topic of "lost", here's our current favourite song for winter. enjoy!
To Papa:
It was a beautiful day today. almost like spring! we went to the park and fed the ducks today! and mama brought me to the playground where i met 2 girls, they were twins! they kept saying i was "lief". we miss you lots and cant wait for you to come home.
From Aidan.

Wednesday, 9 January 2008


Hardy warned me of 2008. he warned me that he'll be taking up a new role at work. he warned me that he'll be doing a lot of travelling. he warned me that there will be lots of adjustments at work. he warned me that there will be times when i have to deal with things myself, make decisions on my own, run errands without him.

I am not really that independent girl sometimes. or maybe cause i just want to do things with him around? maybe i simply love his company too much and want him to be by my side? ok.. ok... so i am not that independent... and now, 2008 is here.

This is by no means my new years resolution. i dont make them, never in fact. they can be very unrealistic some times. i reckon these are real, besides, this is something i should be doing, all year round...

I hereby announce that i will try my outmost best to:
be much more independent (like driving Faizal to Eindhoven Airport this Saturday, just Aidan and me), i will be calmer (tak cepat melenting), i'll be confident of myself (confident enough to sell of my crafts), i'll be less gullible (they always fool me! them to blame partly!), i'll drive safelier (after having had 2 scratches on the car. but hey! left hand drive and a car of 5 mtrs long, takes time ok!), hope i'll manage the house better (like ironing Hardy's office shirts at least 5 of them in 3 days!), i'll be less cengeng and be stronger (by not worrying and crying when hardy says he has to go to some country for a week), less dwelling (5-15 mins is enough) , be smarter (think smart and not let other people step on me), be able to say "NO" when i should (like when someone wants to sell you something that you dont really need), eat healthy (will have to cut down on rice and those bloody good potatoes!), look better (no more going out when hair's wet, but at least i put on some make up and gloss! ), and not to mention manage our finances better this year.

I just hope 2008 will bring more exciting days, happy times, plenty of good adventures, good holidays, good health for all, loads of fond memories together, more good deeds to others, be even more thankful and grateful to God, be as green as we can to protect the environment, smile more and love more!

Its just 9 days into 2008 and Hardy's already in Lyon, France. and starting this weekend he'll be away for the whole week. i know i should get used to this by now. afterall, we know of this even before coming here that he'll have to travel. oh... come on zaza, you can do it...


Monday, 7 January 2008

Healthy, Happy New Year!

First of all, allow me to say how sorry i am for not being able to reply to each and every one of your comments. it was a hectic winter break, good but how we wished the bug didnt get to us. almost all got the bug - norovirus. the virus swept most of the people in the UK. some (my sister Fifi, my brother in law Redza and their 6 month old baby Ferran) and now Hardy are still suffering from it. i seriously hope and pray everyone will be back on their feet again, up and running very soon.

Aidan's well now. the nasty chesty cough is still there, but he's improving, back being his bubbly self.

Secondly, allow me to thank each and every single one of you for your kind thoughts, wishes, prayers and kind words. i am so deeply touched. thank you guys, its really nice and very comforting to know that we have such friends in this world. you've touched us.

Thirdly, i hope it's not too late. we'd like to wish ALL of you a VERY HEALTHY, HAPPY (and hopefully wealthy too.. hehe) NEW YEAR 2008!! Hope you like what Aidan and I drew on New Year's Day. sincerely, from the bottom of our hearts, we wish all of you all the good things, all the love, all the happiness and good health in 2008.

Zaza, Hardy & Aidan

(tonnes to write and share! will get this blog moving for 2008!)