Sunday, April 15, 2007


So near yet so far. An island, yet no longer one. Now connected by bridge and 20 mins away from Kota Bharu. A relative, last met probably 35 years ago. A new goal - to visit at least one "long lost" relative, every time I returned home.

This long lost relative, "Pok Mudo", aka Young Father. Yet, not so young. Past 70 but energetic. Proud father of 12 children and quite an effort to name all when asked! Wife passed away several years ago and now has a "Mok Mudo", aka Young Mother. Relative to his age, the Mok Mudo is young. My guess, at least 25 years younger! Now we know his youthful secret.

Asked him for his "petua". One of his untold petuas I cannot follow, have 12 children. The other "petua" I dare not follow! But one petua I always follow.

"Kito tok leh kedekut gheng". can I translate this? "Gheng" can be translated as effort or energy. What Pok Mudo is trying to tell us youngsters is that we must always expand our energy. By doing so, we become more energetic, and therefore youthful. How true. While I do my regular cycling, Pok Muda walked the beach, every morning and worked out a generous sweat. Envy him. We city folks will pay a bomb to have a house by the sea. Pok Muda's house overlooked the South China Sea.

He was a fisherman, just liked my father was, but not anymore. In his retirement age, he is a "jala" maker. Jala is cast net, like the picture below. With his jala, he casted Mok Mudo too!

He showed us the mould used to make the weights for the jala. The weights are made from timah (tin) which used to be one of Malaysia's main export years ago.

Pok Mudo had migrated from the inland when he was still a youth and has established his home in Kundor Island. The island offered certain charms. I can't quite recall my last visit 35 years ago. The kampung, just like any others, has modern amenities like pipe water and electricity. So, the telaga (perigi) has now outlived its use. Girls or women therefore no longer took bath in the open, with the sarong worn to just arm-pit level. Men too no longer show either their pot-belly or sun-tanned fishermen muscles while bathing. Those were the days.

In Pulau Kundor, the youths expand their gheng by kick-boxing. The Kelantan govt has since made this sport legal. Locally known as Boksing Siye, it is a sport originating across the border and is catching up in popularity. Well, anything so long as youths stay away from doing drugs.

For the boat-builder enthusiastic kids of Pulau Kundor, they experiment on making boats. Timber is now expensive, with the depleting resource from Lojing. So, they turned to metal boats and call it Heavy Metal! Can also call it boat potong, just like kereta potong.

I don't know when will be the re-visit. I have other relatives that I need to complete my rounds. This will happen in my Cycling Trip III to Kota Bharu, perhaps 3 months from now.


oops did I just say that? said...

i should learn POk Mudp's secrets to the gheng..but how? i dont even know what gheng is??
oh and btw, so easy to cast a wife meh? heheh

Ray said...

No sir.
I believe that's not timah, our former export ( tin or Stanum )
I strongly believe that's LEAD ( Plumbum or Timah Hitam )which is never in our export list, past or present ...

Try ask him where he got the raw material. I bet he either got it from used Lead-Acid Battery ( car batt. ) or fishing weight ( batu ladung )or probably from worn jala too.

Lead is greyish in appearence while Tin is brightly metallic.
Lead density is 11.34  g·cm−3 while Tin is only half of that at 7.265  g·cm−3, even less than Iron 7.86 g·cm−3 which makes it impractical to be used as " rantai jala ". Lead is the only choice for rantai jala as it sinks faster. I am totally sure of that.

But beware, Lead is poisonous if badly handled. The risk is highest to those who often work with it. Maybe you should ask Pok Mudo to have his blood lead level checked just for a precaution as the effect is long term but significant.

Okeh, end of science lecture.

I always interested in Jala since small but never got the cash to buy it. I have all the cash now, but the push had diminished. Maybe I should reconsider .. he he. Oh yes, Pulau Kundor ? Dekat nga Kuala Besar ? Mcm very familiar jer.

ARZ said...

OK Ray, you may be correct. Cud be lead and Pok Mudo did actually said he got them from the battery dealer. I'll take your advise and get him to do whatever health check is necessary.

Thanks for dropping by. Btw, u from Kelantan I assume.