Thursday, January 23, 2014

Do you understand?

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahiwabarakatuh…

First few times I was asked the question, I was a bit furious. Who do they think I am? Do I look that stupid? There is one particular Ustaz in Malaysia, also like to ask the question ‘paham tak paham ni?’

To me, it sort of undermines my capability to absorb things, and it’s quite insulting and I do feel offended. But after a couple more times of being asked the same question, and hearing the same question being asked even among themselves (the locals), I began to understand that it is either a figure of speech or its their way to make sure their message get across. So in order for me not to be asked the question anymore, I employ a new tactic. Each time after a person finishes his/ her point, instead of just nodding like I used to, I verbalized, I understand, and if required I paraphrased. This is the case if I don’t have any follow up question. I have to be better at coming up with follow up questions. I was told that in this side of the world, people tend to be more vocal and if I reserve my opinion, I would be perceived as I have no opinion or I just don’t understand. Do you understand? Hehehehe…

Another thing about the way the people here communicate is they like to exchange few words of pleasantries.  If you meet a person, they would spend at least few questions such as how are you, how was you night (if they meet you in the morning), how are things going on…etc.. I am so bad at that. I normally say Hi, and then I go straight to business. Now I have improved a bit, ‘Hi. Good morning, how are you?’ and then I stopped at that. If I knew the person on personal level then I’ll ask a bit more. Yes, I have to learn more of this basa-basi.

Work has not been put on full swing yet but it will be in the next few weeks if not days. Then I will have to practice the basa-basi even more. Now basa-basi dengan pak guard, the canteen girls and some other people.

Till then, wassalam…

p/s: today is 23rd Jan and yet, they still wishes one another Happy New Year. Kat Malaysia first day masuk office ja dengar wish tu...

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Expats Field Day, well....sort of ;)

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh...

Since I touched down on 2nd Jan, my route was only go to office (Industrial Area, IA) and back to the room (guest house in the Residential Area, RA). We are not allowed to go anywhere OUTSIDE the camp. Only in Port Harcourt, we are not allowed to move freely. The rest of the state, Lagos for example we can basically move around.

We get our daily needs inside the camp. For now as long as I am living in the guest house, I eat at the club house, my laundry is being taken care for and my bed is daily made. What more could I ask? Only when I move in to my own house, I will need to worry about buying groceries and stuffs. Which is why we have the shopping trip once in a fortnight :)

Yesterday we had the first trip of the year, and although I have yet to move to my own house, I decided to follow the trip, just to check out what is available and what is not. 

meaning it is allowed outside?!!

Kak Rosiah and Geoffrey, my two new good friend
We were sent (escorted) to two shops, the first one is Everyday, located somewhere at the town. A lot of electrical goods are available, food items are limited, but I was told things that you get here, you might not see it in the next shop. So if you like something just buy it.
multi cooker

Buatan Malaysia :)
The escort, I still could not figure out what type of gun they are using. 
The next shop is Park and Shop, somewhere in the town as well, I can't really tell where, as I am only confined to both RA & IA, so yes, I wouldn't know my way..hehehe.. This shop has more Asian variance. Mostly Thai food paste and ingredients.
Indian snacks (adik beradik murukku la lebih kurang). Bought one packet just to taste :)

well....hello santan..long time no see.. hehehe....

50 Naira = RM 1. You do the math, tengok berapa harga beras basmati sekilo..hehehe...
Mostly the customers are expat. They (we) flooded the supermarket only on alternate weekends.
Geoffrey's total bill. He bought some packed frozen shrimp, really big ones...
Kak Rosiah being escorted out to the van by one of the protocol guys.
That's it, our less than half a day shopping trip in Port Harcourt. We are indeed very confined. All our moves are fully controlled and true enough, not much freedom here. There is slim chance that I get to experience the real Nigeria. For the food choices, I have no complaints, as long I can get some halal meat, fine by me. :)

Kak Rosiah is a Bruneian lady that also live as single here, her husband is in Gabon, she arrived in November last year and hopefully in a month time will be able to move to her own house. They are still doing some renovation work on it. Her shipment are all here already, now only waiting for the house.

My house? It is currently occupied by an Indian family. They are moving to US in March, I will go in after the real estate people complete the renovation, quite few things needs to be touched up and re-done. So tentatively, I still do not know how long it will take. Let it be, I'll tell the story about that house later. Till then, adios :D


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

From M to N (Malaysia to Nigeria)

Assalamu'alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

I have promised and I have broken my promised. I have been delaying my post for what it feels like forever. I have safely arrived here on 2nd Jan 2014. The journey leg same as before but this time I was flown to Dubai instead of Doha (Emirates flight tickets are cheaper at that time I guess..hehehe..)

First post of the year, let me just share few picture of late.
my future mode of transportation inside the camp
stuffs 1
stuffs 2
stuff 2 another view
stuffs 3
How can a single person have that many things? Well, simple. I will not be able to buy much stuffs once I get to Nigeria. The advice that I get is bring whatever that you think that you would need. Hence, for the past few months prior to the departure, I have been buying stuffs and stocking up. I loose track of how many packs of detergent that I bought. And, according the old timers, electrical goods are very expensive (well, everything is expensive here), some even go to the distance of buying spares for everything!! I only bought spare iron, rice cooker and standing fan. There is this one guy, he is buying a spare TV!! amek kau..
packers packing away...

These things are all inside the container sailing somewhere, yet to reach Nigerian shore. I will be expecting them in the next 3 months insyaAllah. I have yet to receive my 75kg air freight, in which I thrown in some books, my bicycle, and also some kari ayam dalam tin..hehehe...

Until next time daa...

1st post di perantauan : #belummenangislagi hehehe  hashtag tak boleh blah!! :P 

Saturday, January 11, 2014