Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Ordinary Days

6 March 2009 – Friday

1. Arrived at the Auditorium early, 5 minutes before 8, bringing my laptop with which to show the slides. Jamil set up the computer for the power point. To my disgust, I did not have the slides of modern 20th century western art, or 20th century Malaysian art, in the laptop or in the thumb drive. I used to have them. Must have deleted them, to recover space for something else. So I ended up lecturing on those two things right off the bet, without notes.
2. Took three girls to breakfast after class at the mamak place next door from the BHL computer shop where I dropped my CPU, which refused to start. The problem started when I inserted the connection wire of the printer to the CPU, while it was on. I was a little rough in doing so. I must have knocked something off.
3. At the mosque, after Friday prayers, I probed Atuk Zain as to why he detested one imam, “Menyapah ese”. He is upset because the imam is of the habit after his al-Fatihah, followed by one surah, then silent. And he keeps silent for the longest of time. What for? There is no hadis which says he must, Atuk Zain insists. Just then the imam in his white robe passed by. Atuk Zain hissed, “Tengguk tu, jalan pijak somut pun tak mati. Tapi bila seliseh dengan ese, dia buek tak nampak. Menyampah.”
4. It seems there is no end to filing memos. I spend hours filing them. I want to organize my life, make sure I jot down the dates of meetings and things. This university churns more memos than all the universities combined, I swear.
5. Because my wife took her mother, Shakur, and Nadia to IKEA to window shop, I made sure I got home before dark. Arrived at 6.30. Immediately set up my lap top, determined that tonight I do nothing but the novel. And in six hours I wrote 2 precious pages. Would they be as precious tomorrow?
6. Jojoi came back from work bring me 2 pieces of KFC. Out of diffidence, I ate because my son brought home the food. I really don’t care for junk foods.

7 March 2009 – Saturday

1. My walk was wonderful because I did the five rounds in one hour.
2. My mother-in-law fried kueh kodok and made sambal tumis. I ate one plateful, my favorite.
3. Spent the whole day in front of this lap top, finishing another 4 pages. On re-reading they seem stale. Damn!
4. Dr. Fauzi, Jamilah, Roskand came bringing along Prof. Jonathan Holmes, who was duly impressed with the house, the books, the paintings. He flies back to Tasmania tonight.
5. Then Baha and his family arrived, showing me his dissertation, the corrections he made, the pictures he replaced, just like what the examiners had suggested.
6. Tonight I paint, adding another layer of glaze of Hooker's Green and Turquoise Blue that might create the depths that have eluded me thus far.