Love … is that inner smile we often disregard.

Last year was the first time my birthday falls on fasting month. I didn’t go out, shared a cake with my baby bro who’s birthday fell on the 22nd of September and had to literally beg Muid to bring me out to Ali Maju at PBD to have midnight hangout with Elyna and Kay, just so that I have human interaction on my birthday, AT LEAST.

 

I was poorly broke, jobless and in the lamest pathetic situation, then.

 

I thought, the year before that (2005) was wayyy better, I had a potluck birthday picnic at KLCC park.

 

This year, again, on a weekday, in the fasting month.

 

But I’m older, happier, have a decent job and have made lots of new friends as I develop more love with my existing friends.

 

Then, Atilia was scheduled for her gig at Bangkok Jazz on the 28th & 29th September. (ironically how her song suddenly played on my mp3 player, giler kuat kuasa minah ni)

 

I say why not. Why not have a birthday gathering, a gathering. Party is too costly. Plus I don’t have the means to sponsor parties.

 

So, I planned. Posted everywhere. My blog. Flickr. Told friends. Come come come. Hear this angel sing and give me hugs.

 

Things you plan. Sometimes, doesn’t really turn out the way you expected they would.

 

It turned out even better.

 

People came. People became friends. People hugged. People booked place in your heart.

 

Firstly I’d like to THANK Atilia for having this gig, if not, I wouldn’t know where else to crash, but also would like to APOLOGISE if we were a bit too LOUD at the little corner there. But I promise you this, LOTS, I mean, TONS OF GORGEOUS ATILIA SNAPSHOTS that night. And “Ready Or Not” jazzified, my goodness, You’re DA BOMB BABE!!!!!! Me and Muid menyanyi menari like hell (okayla, over exaggerated). ps:- I boleh dibawa majlis okay, gelas tu kes tak sengaja sebab taksub dengan korang. LOVE YOU LOTS BABE!

 

Then, my personal and close friends who have been with me for years. Salmi, Faris, Ibah, Yana and Naddy. These are my friends who have loved me for years, the innocent little confused being that I was back then, and the notty older bitch I’ve become today. Hehehe. Faris, thanks for the perfume and Ibah, thanks for the Putumayo cd. Salmi, next slumber party, kitaorang nak pasang Ciara Dance CD and dance pulak. No more SATC marathon, WE DANCE LIKE MAD OKAY!!!! The rest, your presence sudah best giler, worth the pungut’ing everyone everywhere. Hahaha (Muid yang bawak kereta pun).

 

Muid’s good friend, Nadiah, whom I last met in KLUEUrbanscape 2004. Thanks for crashing in!!!! Great to meet you again!

 

My newly lovable Fan’Tia’stic friends who have just known me for like freakin’ 3-4 weeks but loves me like crazy (ye, itu statement kasi perasan diri sendiri). OYA, FYNAZ AND GJIE!!!! (okayla, takleh put Emy under the ‘love me like crazy’ category). Sorry didn’t spend much time with you guys but thanks for the constant giler jokes, Oya’s constant kisses (I know you love me babe!), Fynaz’s hugs (besh peluk makcik ni) and Gjie’s crazy funny antics (hahaha, aku nak lagu twinkle litele star tambah untuk ringtone. Nyanyian khas Gjie dengan Tia!).

 

Tia’s great family and friends, Fatin (hahaha, we sambung super poke later), Shah, Chomel, Fizar and Zairi.

 

My newly lovable Flickr clan, Eka, Ena, Edri, Fairuz, Mizi, Faris, Johan, Magnus, Wira, Prakash, Waa (tho didn’t manage to catch up much), JingYing, Vignes. Its great to see people who shares passion in photography, enjoys great musi.c Magnus, you’re like the preacher in church screaming “Praise The Lord”!!!), Prakash cha-cha’ing with me and doing the Banghra and Chicken dance (giler bangga ada kawan sporting mcm ni!!), Fairuz (next time I cucuh-poke you! hehehe, best giler dapat superpoke LIVE!!!!), Mizi (yang paling awal RSVP! bagus bagus!), Johan (make sure lots of cute shot of me!), Eka (one button, puhlease, just one button!!!!!!!!!!!!!), Ena (glad I gave you the tangible hug that you needed, hope you felt better and will be better), Edri (a surprise one! who enjoyed seeing me cry with Magnus’s cerita anney), Wira (mintak Magnus your beria bercerita shot I took), JingYing (glad you came and danced and had fun!!!!), Vig (didn’t know you were THE sound engineer there. hehehe, Good Laaa!), Faris (at last, mr. man of leisure no-need-to-go-to-office in flesh! Thanks for coming bro!)

 

We continued our session at Pelita KLCC and yeah, I cried like hell laughing to Magnus’s story. Giler la. And thanks Magnus for letting me play with his camera. Me, definitely NIKON fan now! (I do use a Nikon pun).

 

It was a great night. It ended great as it was brilliantly planned.

 

Life goes on. Today, have to tukar timing belt kereta, iftar out with family and some few other things to settle. The thought of work comes. Especially, 20-page newsletter pending and its all on my shoulders. I have to do lots of write-up, article, reading.

 

Thursday will be my last day at work.

 

That’s a long way to go.

 

Today, I’m walking with the sweet thoughts of yesterday. Thanks guys!

 

Owh, how can I forget my brother Muid. THANKS THANKS THANKS. I LOVE YOU SO MUCH, AND THANKS FOR THE BVLGARI BODY SPRAY EMULSION!!!!!!!!

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A thank you note.

I would like to say Thank You from the bottom of my heart, for those who still care, and remember.

 

I’ll do this chronologically based on the sms, chats, wishes I’ve received.

 

To those who texted me:-

Ibah (Saya juga berharap hari-hari saya sentiasa indah dengan kehadiran kamu sebagai kawan yang setia), Farah (I felt a tear in my eye when reading “Luv u so much! N when i say i luv u, i really mean it”. I know you do babe. And you know how much I love you too, right), Faris (Saya juga mahu kaya!!!!!), Jay, Dayana, Bank Islam.sms. (hehehe, penangan PTPTN), Alin, Gjie, Bibi, Bayah, Lilia, Elyna, Anis, Mizi, Aiza, Sarcy, Farid, Che Din, Izham, Stanley (haha, my art buyer).

 

To those who wished via Yahoo! Messenger/Google Talk:-

Ena (thanks babe!), Faris & Salmi (yang tiba2 offline tanpa bye bye), Tini.

 

To those who MMSed me:-

Han, seriously, the clip is SO DEM CUTE!!!!

 

To those who called me:-

Farisa (all the way from London, I’m so touched and love you so much!), Yongie (yeah, my vain sister who ended up talking bout herself, hehe, but I love you yongie!), Viga (all the way from Singapore, cayalah bro, berjaya buat I rasa bersalah! hehe), Bibi (text lagi, call lagi, hehehe, love you Bibs!), Mizi (what a surprise!), Affa, Yana (never too late!).

 

To those who gave me a card:-

My family, love the notes, especially Colonel writing “Have a Great Time Ahead”. hehe. wow, colonel ask me to party kah???; My officemates who also called and sang via office extension, and later sang in the museum gallery. hehehe.

 

To those who wished via Facebook:-

Syiqin, Han Ghazi, Faizal, Salmi (grafiti cupcake yang sangat comel!), Hazlynda, Shafina, Isaac, Eka, Edri, Sharizal, Ariza, Kaz (hugster!!! BIG TIME!), Tini, Kak Ruby, Erna, Fatin Nadia (hahah, am waiting for what comes out of the plant dearest lickuid paper), Jaja, Grom Airiss.

 

To those who wished via Friendster:-

Gjie (dia lagi, bagus si kopi dangdut ni!), Maria, Oya (Nafsu 25th!), Fynaz, Emy, Tina, Miza, Valerie, Terew, Reza (see, complimentary thank yous come in blog and friendster!), Farah, Fidy, Kiena, Mahir, Dina, Five-Z, Soul, Hajar, Cupid, Viga, Ein.

 

I’m older, not old. And I have been loved. Thanks Guys!

In search of maturity, we lose wisdom.

A few days back, me and my girl Salmi was questioning, “why is it guys love those prim and proper matured looking girls who always behave, like ALWAYS BEHAVE prettily?”

 

Me and Salmi giggled endlessly, admitting our childishness, our constant goofing around, despite the fact, me, the fake intellectual, and Salmi, a naturally born fashionista.

 

A lot of things have happened for the past one year. last year, I was futureless, not knowing what to do with my life, being utterly lame and begging muid to take me out at 11pm 25th sept for mamak becos I had no human interaction the whole day.

 

In one year, there can be lot of lessons learned, huge mistakes done, millions of people who passed by in our lives, and we’ve noticed half of them.

 

Working has taught me a lot. its not like I’m new to working a year back, but a full time job that paved my career path, built the person that I am.

 

I met people I never met before, I met people who other people kill to meet. okay, killing might be over exaggerating it. yeah, I’ve learned how to over exaggerate the past year too.

 

Commitments, responsibilities, juggling everything in my hand, and managing time. dealing with emotions and go on with life. crying inside and laughing out loud.

 

Nearly half an hour ago, I discussed my future plan of publishing my book with a friend. she who is one of the greatest woman photographer in Malaysia, offered to take photos for my cover concept. the discussion I had with her made me realised my long time passion in writing which seems to fade away through time.

 

Writing this thinking about my future plan makes me want to cry. the fact that this little no one, do have a dream she often refuse to admit.

 

Dreaming is something I lost hope in.

 

I’ve dreamed a lot of things that I know wouldn’t happen. So, I have become afraid to dream.

 

The past year, I’ve become, a Hug-a-Holic.

 

I crave hugs from everyone I know. Fortunately, I’ve made new friends who loves giving hugs, regardless how little I know of them. These people, we call strangers, are family from the life we’ve lived before.

 

As I grow older, I noticed that what I want, as years age me, is not maturity, but wisdom.

 

The wisdom to understand life, to be able to interpret it in my own very way, to find the magic in love and to act accordingly, while understanding things from different perspective.

 

Not maturity.

 

If maturity I seek, being a quarter of century old, I think I’ve aged triple than these Gregorian years.

 

Hence, I promise myself, I’ll be a wise child. a person who never loses her inner child, who jumps up and down and take secret rides on barney at midvalley. but wiser. to not get caught embarrassing her friends. a child with passion to know. a child with curiosity to learn. a child who never cries after falling down, but giggled and rolled on the ground laughing. if no guy would fall in love with this child, its okay. relationship is not about being in one or having someone. relationship is enjoying the magic of love. and that magic happens in my relationships with family, friends and most of the time, the sun, the moon, the clouds and some stars.

 

In search of wisdom, I’d give up the chance to mature.

 

Happy Birthday to Abby! She’s 25 years old on the 25th of September 2007.

 

Now, let’s blow the candles shall we.

 

*poof*

*darkness. and a smile*

 

Where? Where are you?

Thanks to Salmi, and our great slumber party last weekend, I’m haunted by this song by Bebel Gilberto. So, I looked up for the lyrics and tried finding the right translation for it.

 

Please excuse my poor translation research but Portugese is such a wonderful and beautiful language. I first fell in love with Desafinado then The Girl from Ipanema which lead me to believe, I am actually a malay born with a brasillian heart. Hehehe.

 

Enjoy the wonderful lyrics which not only translated from freetranslation.com, but also communicated whats in my heart.

 

Cadê Você? by Bebel Gilberto

 

Cadê? Cadê Você?
Que eu só quero te ver, quero te ver
Com quê? Com o quÊ?
Que eu vou te convencer, te convencer

Quem sabe alguem vai saber se envolver
E depois não vai ter mais ninguem pra se ter

Tchararathabada….
Tchararathabada….
Tchararathabada….

Porquê? Porquê que eu não posso saber?
Posso entender?
Não vem, que não tem…
Que isso já foi meu bem, já foi meu bem!

Quem sabe voce nunca quis nem saber
E assim não tem mais o porquê pra viver

Tchararathabada….
Tchararathabada….
Tchararathabada….

(Gracias a Fleur por esta letra)

(English)
Where is? Where are You?
That I alone I want to see, I want see
With what? With the what?
That I go convince you, convince you

Who knows someone goes to know be involved
And afterwards is not going to have more nobody for the have

Tchararathabada….
Tchararathabada….
Tchararathabada….

Reason? Reason that I do not be able to know?
I can understand?
Does not come, that does not have…
That that already was mine well, already was mine well!

Who knows you never wanted neither know
And like this does not have more the reason for the live

Tchararathabada….
Tchararathabada….
Tchararathabada….

(Thanks to Fleur for this lyrics taken from http://www.wowlyrics.com/read.php?wow=1936789)

 

——————————————————————-

 

It’s 1.37am. and raining. the perfect mood for the song. and I’m thinking of someone who slips away without a Goodbye. Never thought I would experience what I once wrote last year. A quote I put in one of my blog entries which made an impact to some of my friends, but not me at that moment.

 

Now I’m totally feeling it.

 

“Those who left with goodbyes doesn’t haunt our thoughts as much as those who slips away in silence.”

 

With this song. there can be no better words and melody to describe.

 

Call me stupid. call me sappy. call me anything.

 

I hope tomorrow I’ll forget.

 

I hope tomorrow I’ll stop looking.

 

I hope tomorrow will be a new day.

 

But for tonight. I’ll think of that someone. With the question.

 

Cadê? Cadê Você?

Salaam Ramadhan (eid Mubarak)

Salaam and Greetings to all,

 

You guys might just know me as Abby Latif or maybe Nurol Latif if we’re connected through work. We might never have met, maybe occasionally bumped into each other and exchanged callcards or during those functions where millions of people would show up (yeah, just got to know there’s 6 million people residing in Kuala Lumpur). Whatever it is, this note comes from the same person, whatever name you chose to call me with.

 

Ramadhan has arrived and in a community where collectivism is practiced and love is highly preached, there’s no boundaries in respecting and sharing each others’ great values. For the Muslims, we are advised to seek for forgiveness before we start our respectable fasting month, in order to cleanse our souls and start anew.

 

So, I would like to take this opportunity (as my v.v.poor memory would allow me) to apologise for any of my wrong doings, if I’ve said things I shouldn’t have, disturbed you at the wrong time and unknowingly irritate you with my constant sarcasm. We might be mutual acquaintances but I know some, I have hold dearly to my heart, loved, laughed, cried and hugged.

 

There are times we need to be reminded.
There are times we forget.
There are times we smile for each other.
And there are times we live to regret.

But this time around
I ask to share a smile and hold out my hand
Offering a sincere friendship along the way.

 

May you all have a great Ramadhan ahead, enjoy the Bazaar Ramadhan and Iftar outings with family and friends.

 

Lots of Love,
Abby Latif (Nurol Latif)

 

Mistress of the Cosmic Abyss

 

If only

I am more firm in my stance.

 

I have more courage in my action.

 

I’m more optimistic in my chances.

 

I’m practically procrastinating at work, like a vegetable on a life-support, not knowing how to survive but apparently am breathing, not knowing what to eat but apparently not hungry.

 

Survival. It’s a strong word. used as an excuse and as a purpose.

 

I kill to survive = excuse.

 

I eat to survive = purpose.

 

Everyday, I survive another day. I am morbid. I think about death all the time. what if I just swerve unknowingly while doing 100kmph. I could skid and crash on the divider, flip my kembara, do a total chinese action movie stunt and die with my parents finding out how I died – while busy struggling to light my gudang garam stick in the car. yes. horror. no. I’m not quitting.

 

Then, I would leave my family with not fond memories. but the revelation of my excessive smoking habits, my secretly owned credit card (plus its unpaid debt) and other vices. hence, parents would resent to mourn for my death. less number pf people crying. less popularity. hurm. yeah, as if my superlatives status would grant me better place up there, or down there. hehehe.

 

My car’s timing belt should be replaced. my fast-speeding driving habit should be suspend. my pocket have no money. hence. yeah. surviving by the minute. I have got 5 sticks left. thanked god tomorrow puasa. well, puasa doesn’t mean no need to buy kembara’s petrol or pay toll. will do vacuuming around the house for small change. will probably not. will have no time. will smith.

 

I’m rambling. I like to ramble. ramble mumble. mumble jumble. then, like cookie we crumble.

 

Last night, I went to join the KLickr group for a documentary screening of a war photographer named James Natchwey – (refer http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Nachtwey and http://www.jamesnachtwey.com/). It was great. Thank you to Syahrin Aziz and Shafina who organised the screening at Click! Go Live! Experience! Centre in Damansara Utama.

 

But from my experience and knowledge in war. my dad was an army officer. and his stories serving under the United Nation in constructing the government for East Timor in 2002/2003; and my recent involvement with the Perdana Global Peace Forum earlier this year, war …. is something, indescribable by words. nor pictures. it comes full pledge for the human’s sense – seeing, hearing, listening, and most of all – SMELLING. the war smell completes everything, the whole experience of war. you see bombs flying here and there, you see tears, but can you endure the smell??????? the smell of corpse lying everywhere. and also, when the bomb explodes, the earth shakes. you can see that on the screen from the comfort of your peaceful home. but can you really face the sudden trembling of the earth, scared of the massive destruction human is doing to her?

 

When I was young, post Bosnia + Gaza strip ordeal and post Selubung, I’ve always wanted to work for the United Nation. I wanted to be there and help, do what I can do for the worn torn countries. As I grew up, it got diverted to the dream of being a News Correspondence. I practiced reading news out loud and making commentaries in my room. But when I got to know news reading must come with a gorgeous face, I shut off the dream and came back to reality. To be in the TV Industry, be it in front or behind the camera, you must be a total looker. unfortunately, I can’t groom. Hence, I know I couldn’t stand a chance.

 

Yeah. if only ….. I was …. whatever.

 

When I joined this Foundation, the first day interview, when boss asked me why I would want to work with an NGO, I told her, I’m aspired to work for the United Nations and this is just a step there.

 

I remembered when I first went to my Toastmasters meeting, I was called in front to give a impromptu speech on a table topic. it was about what I want to do in life. I was shaking out of my stage fright, talking about how I wanted to be a humanitarian. my evaluator told me that despite every flaw, I was talking from my heart which was communicated to everyone there.

 

Yeah. if only ….. they know ….. what a hypocrite I am.

 

I’m leaving the Foundation for something that differs from my passion.

 

in means of survival.

 

be it an excuse or a purpose.

 

but …. if only …. I’m not in such denial.

If I can just squeeze a lil bit of time

then I can write a lil bit of note.

things I can’t write elsewhere.

things I’m not afraid to share.

here at least.

I handed in my resignation letter.

tho I was a bit upset.

I seriously love my job.

but I need to move on.

make the right decision.

being 25 and work at a place with no career advancement is not good.

who say its good, please raise your hand and smack me good.

I want to work in a place that I know I’ll be a senior exec, an assistant manager, a manager and so forth.

thats my only reason for leaving.

but I’m leaving a job that I love.

it’ll be weird to know this is the end.

well, maybe not this … in 3 weeks time.

I hope its for the best.

I hope I’ve made the right decision.

I hope I can see the moon tonight and the sun tomorrow and smile.

I hope she said goodbye.