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Monday, 24 October 2016

Good bye Kissman..

I lost another firend..

Good bye my friend Kissman Che Lah,may Allah The Most Merciful and Compassionate bless your soul and place you among the inhibitants of His Al Jannah.InsyaAllah.Last Friday morning,on reading his Facebook message that he got a heart and undergone some angio procedure at Hospital Serdang,I called and talked to him.He informed that everything went well and when I told I wanted to visit him he told me no need to come because that he will be discharged the next day.Sadly,something has gone wrong..Last night I got the news at about 9pm that he passed away at 6:30pm.Al-Fatihah for my friend Kissman.
Kissman was about twenty years my junior.He was an avid reader of my blog The Reader and after our exchanges of views we became friends.He came over to my house to seek some clarification/knowledge from me .Some years later ,he gave me a present- a book entitled The Muqadimmah by Ibnu Khaldun.This is no ordinary books and not many young people read this kind of heavy content.He was very interested in higher knowledge like sufism.
Last year,he called me to seek my advice to improve his laundry business.I hope he did well.Laundry shops are mushrooming now.
By the way,I am writing this note to share some lessons with younger friends.
1.Anyone can die at any age.Take care of our health-then tawwakal.
2.Donot wait until you are 60 to learn religion and do more ibadah.
3.Alway consult the counsel of your elders in personal life and business.

Thank you Kissman for being my good friend.May Allah reward you with al Jannah.InsyaAllah,we shall meet again..

Monday, 3 October 2016


Cerita Kedaikopi : # 86-31.03.2002

The only way we're going to lose our relevance is if we stop learning..

"I have been reading your 'Cerita Kedaikopi' stories but I still have

not finished reading the previous ones",said

my friend who happens to be one of my avid readers."Well, I took four

years to write 85 stories but please donot

try to read them within a month. Take your time and read them at your

own pace-otherwise you will have indigestion.

By the way, don't forget to read my other weblogs and travel journals as

well", I replied. Then he asked," How come

I do not receive anything this month?

'Honestly, it is easier to read than to write. What more if one is busy

with one's own business and some urgent

family matters to attend to. My wife's uncle, a well known writer once

told me: You can't do both; either you

write or you do business. He is right and spoke from his experience. He

started writing and became a publisher

and owned a printing company. Later in the years, he could only do

writing and someone else had to do the

publishing and printing business. Writing is his business! And in my

case, managing project is my business and

writing is just a hobby. I will try harder to at least produce two short

stories/notes every month . Seriously, I am

considering to hand over my business to my partners and take a post

graduate studies so that I could have all

the time to read and to write. Then,insyaAllah, I will go into teaching

and do some freelance consultancy

business to foot my bills.

This month I wish to share my experience in the application of a little

bit of knowledge that I have in project

management. I thought I know enough to do a job but when I come to it, I

discover that I have a lot more to

learn. I admit that I lack the depth and the breadth of the knowledge as

well as the skills to apply it. So I started

buying books to read as much as I could for the last three months and at

the same time I met a few people

whom I believe know more than I do. The words of Kung Fu Tze keeps

ringing in my ears:

"The essence of knowledge is not having it but to apply it."

It is very true indeed."The more I dig into it, the more I learn that I

have to update my previous knowledge as

well as learn more from anyone,anyplace and anytime. In certain areas, I

have to re-examine my previous

maxims and start to learn,unlearn and relearn even from younger people."

May I qoute John Dooner,CEO and

Chairman of Interpublic Group:"The only way we're going to lose our

relevance is if we stop learning".

Acquiring and having knowledge is a personal thing. This I could do on

my own but when it comes to apply it, I

have to work with other people ,resources and the environment around the

project. As a leader or agent of

change, having knowledge alone is not enough. I need physical,

intellectual and spiritual strenghts to carry it

through. This is the challenge that you and me have to take by the horns

if we ever want to change for the

better. Anybody can start the game but only a few can finish the game!

We had water supply problems in 1998 and yet we had it again this month.

The question that begs the answer is

whether we have learnt anything from our mistakes. I think we should

also listed down the lessons that we have

not learnt as well. IMHO opinion, the states do not have the financial

resources to invest in water resources

capital expenditures. The federal government should take over and

provide good management.Period. I think

low cost housing projects is a good example. Privatisation is only one

of the financial model that may improve

the water supply industry. UK is a good example in privatisation but

Japan waterworks is still government owned

and managed , yet it works fine!

I could go on with a few more examples but then I will not do justice to

your power of imagination to explore on

your own to look for similar cases. Since the time is almost mid-night,

I will end my short note here with the

saying that common men learn form their mistakes but the wiser ones

learn from mistakes of others.

Notes: My observations indicate that many mistakes in project management

are repeated in many projects even

by the same consultants and contractors for a simple reason that thay

have failed to learn from their own and

as well as others' mistakes. In that case, they will surely lose their


Wednesday, 21 September 2016


My blog was named The Reader.Lately,I am not doing justice to The Reader because I have been neglecting my reading and  had succumbed to photography hobby.I posted too many photos on my Facebook and blogs,not to mention buying Camera Magazines and books that it left me with no time to read novels,business management and religious books.I have to stop  this craziness and make my life more balanced.But then,who could resist the Fujifilm X100T camera that I am exploring for more than two months.Anyway, to The Reader,please accept my apologies.I must read at least two books in a month and not the other way around.I used to read a book a week but not any more.Age is catching up and my reading slows down.

The Reader is my blog.Before I got addicted-may be not strong enough verb for my obsession in photography,I blog two or three times a week at The Reader.At worse,I write once a week.Now,I am doing once a month.

In the last 60 days,I bought five new books to read.It must be due to my guilty sub-conscious mind doing itself healing work.The books are The Girl On The Train,The Italian Wife,When We Were Orphans,A World Without Islam and Negara Maslahah-Pemikiran Al-Ghazali dan Kontek Politik Malaysia.Now,I have more than enough on my plate to chew until end of this year.

If you are a bookworm or book lover,you won't believe that I would not buy a new book.It is a matter of when the good one comes along.

On checking my Goodreads account in cyberspace,I saw a few of friends had sent requests to be my friends and I did not approve them because I did not bother to check it out until a few days ago.To those affected by my inaction,please accept my apologies.

To facilitate sharing of information and experience in reading,I created a Goodreads Group called Bookcafe for my friends to join and share our love for reading.In case,I get lost in my photo walking ,may I ask my friend to pull my ears back to BookCafe and re-start my reading.

Notes on Photos:These photos were taken during our first gathering at Umai Cafe,Putrajaya.

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Pak Non

I knew Allahyarham Pak Non many years ago via our blogging activities.He hailed from Alor Setar but lived in Putrajaya. According to my friend Pak Hasnul Arifin,he passed away last month,but sadly I knew of it only today when my birthday wishes for Pak Non got a response from his friend that Pak Non has passed away.May Allah bless his soul and put him among the solihin and return to al Jannah,insyaAllah.

As fellow senior bloggers,we read each other blogs and he gave me a lot of advice.He was also an avid photographer and has a few photo books.On one morning,we met at Presint 8 for photo walking and later I had breakfast with him and his family.We took each other photos.

Dear Pak Non:My apologies to you,Sir for not making an effort to visit you in Titi Gajah,Kedah.InsyaAllah I shall compile my photos of Putrajaya into a book.

Thank you Sir for your brotherly advice.

Pak Non's blog.

Friday, 19 August 2016


In this photo,I don't have the full view of the sun as it arises due to some clouds but I know for sure the blurred whitish image hanging above the horizon is the sun.Sometimes,we see the sun in full view,at times ,it is fully hidden and sometimes it is partly hidden.But we know it is there all the time.If not,all of us will be frozen to death.
When we see a beautiful sun rise,the first hijab was removed-the physical layer.Peeling off another layer with some knowledge,we know and understand what is the sun,its location relative to where we are and what is it made of and what roles it plays in the whole solar system and the universe.

I just wonder how the sun could continue giving us light and heat(among other things that I don't know of) non- stop for thousands of years?What kind of fuel it uses?Another layers of hijab will open and tells us there is a continuous state of nuclear fission taking place there..As we probe further and deeper,I come to question that science does not have an answer:Who created and put the sun into orbit for the benefits of mankind?
From seeing ,we move to understanding and we go further to meaning.Going deeper,we dig into the meaning of the meaning.

Once a month in the 60s,my late father took me to Kota Bahru for shopping with my mother.On one occasion,after our lunch at Sumatra Restaurant,he suddenly told me that we had to go home.I was not very happy because I needed more time to wander around in KB.I complained to him but he said no and we have to go home.When I asked why ,he replied:"A lot of people are waiting to see me at our house".I asked again,"How do you know?"(No mobile phone at that time)He replied,"I have kashaf.You have 14 inches hijab".I just shut up and followed him.By the way,my late father was Tok Guru Pondok Beris,Bachok ,Kelantan.Only 40 years later I knew the meaning of hijab.
Once the 'hijab' is removed,then we can 'see'.

Friday, 5 August 2016



About a week ago,I met my SDARA senior Dato Salamon Selamat at our Hari Raya gathering at Putrajaya Lake Club.On seeing him,I went straight to see him and thanked him for teaching me a good habit I acquired more than 50 years when I was in Remove Class, SDAR,Tanjung Malim.He was in form four then and a school prefect.During a prep class,he taught me to set up a vocabulary book.At that time,as a kampung boy I think I knew not more than 100 word of English as I came from a Malay medium school.In six years,when I sat for my MCE,I got C3 for my English.As they say,the rest is history.

Well,what is so great about words?As a simple example,without knowing the right word,I would not be able to write a good sentence.Empowered with the command of English language,I was able to get an engineering degree from Sheffield ,England.Again,the rest is history.

To young parents,please inculcate the culture of having a vocabulary book for your children.It is a great asset for them later in their adult life.By the way,I have a few dictionaries in the office and at home.

Thursday, 30 June 2016

Teaching is my passion..

A few years after I graduated with civil engineering degree and working  for JKR,my late father asked me to resign and become a teacher.My father was Tok Guru Pondok Beris,Bachok,Kelantan.He wanted me to teach and impart knowledge to others because  of more 'pahala' from Allah.I was more interested  in getting  higher post in my career and more money then.So,I continued working for JKR for almost nine years  until resigned in 1984 to join private sector for greener pastures.

Almost 18 years later..

In 2002,I met two gentlemen who are members of PMI-Project Management Institute,Malaysia Chapter.We share a common passion in project management.A year later,I formed a Project Management Training company with them as my associates or I called them my partners in crime.We went out to tell people of the PMI Model of managing projects.To my expectation,I love getting paid for talking about this passionate subject of mine.Slowly,I fade away from my construction company and left the operation to my brother.I am now full time project and business consultant since 2003.

How I wished my father is still alive so that I could tell him that I am a teacher.He should be proud that his son's firm has trained a few hundreds JKR and consultant firms professionals in managing their projects better.Not only that I am a teacher/consultant but I also earned more money than being an engineer per se!

Two years ago,I came across INSKEN-Institut Keusahawanan Negera.I share their goals in helping SME bumiputra to prosper and grow their business.Last month,I attended 3-day course to be business facilitator and this month I attended another 3-day course to be a Business Counsellor /Coach[BC],InsyaAllah.Hopefully in three months time,I shall be officially certified BC and be able to contribute to the growth and success of bumiputra SME business.Today,I received an appointed letter from INSKEN as BC starting 1st July ,2016.