Thursday, February 09, 2006


I'd put on the clown suit right now, right at this very minute, if that will make Aunt Su laugh again. She doesn't feel like going out for dinner so what choice do I have but to fix something so both of us won't go hungry in the middle of the night because I can sense that this is going to be a long night. Who'd think a simple thing like a mix up in a laundry could lead to this. But I am dealing with an elderly who has never felt independent for a long time and suddenly when she finally had the chance to feel independent something as clumsy as a laundry mix-up has to happened to make her feel miserable, blaming herself as if my shirts are a present from King of Jordan.

I have said 'It's alright' like four million times and I can't say it again unless I want my jaw to break into a million pieces. At the moment I am pretty confused how to deal with the shirts that got damaged in the machine. I have folded and put them out of her sight but I don't quite know what to do with the batik sarung because they are hers and those have to go to her cupboard. I don't want to put these away because she might ask for them but the thing is, the sarung may remind her of the mix-up and this will get her into the whole new cycle of blaming herself again. I have handled quite a few major emergency situations that had prevented major petroleum disasters but this business with batik sarung and laundry machine to me is bigger than a major petroleum fire. And it's so domestic in nature that there is no written manual you can refer to in order to have an idea how to deal with the situation.

To cheer her up a little I've got asam pedas, ikan tenggiri goreng, and Hailam style mixed vegetables. Nothing much but it's the best I can do with what's left in the fridge since we have ran out quite a bit of provision for something more appropriate like bubur asyura or something. I promise to take her to Tesco tomorrow for groceries so she can walk around a bit to keep her legs strong. And how can I thank the good people who thought out the name Tesco because this word, like magic, brought sparkles to her eyes that she started listing out things we should buy. Please don't have the impression that I am paid by Tesco to write about it here. Tesco is right behind our apartment and we can see it from here, together with the huge signs of Burger King and McDonald. Wait the minute, Burger King has got a new Greek Lamb burger and what has gotten into me? I haven't tried it. Have you? Again, I am not paid by Burger King to write about this.

She is her usual self again, watching the news on tv, all the time asking me for comments. I don't feel like talking but I am not taking any chances with her and so I had better say something incoherent so that she'll start on me with the phrase that's music to my ears, hang ni meghapu. Apa dia? Ikan kerapu, maksu nak makan ikan kerapu nanti besok cek pi tangkap dalam sungai. Ikan kerapu bukan ikan sungai lah. Laa, ya ka, cek mati-mati dok ingat ikan kerapu hidup dalam akuarium.

Hang ni mengapu.

(I love you, Aunt Su.)


Blogger demonsinme said...

Master Bergen,

Boy, when you write you do write...hehehe

Now here's a trick (and you have already learn it by chance) to lift the grieve of an elderly is to focus one things that she like (like what you did lah). no need to say "its okay" hundreth of times. just mum it and shift her focus on things she like.

you already seen how it works.

p/s - your aunt is lucky to have you.

9:42 PM  
Blogger dr in the house said...

I'd feel bad too if I mess up the clothes of someone who takes great care of me!

Dapat rasa bubur Asyura dah hari ni?

12:34 AM  
Blogger anggerik merah said... cute..."hang megharapu" sounds like she is smiling again..

2:43 AM  
Blogger Noni said...

I am happy that all is well... if only my mother was... but i'm not gonna go there. Asam pedas sounds yummy... you're making me drool first thing in the morning already... haiya...

8:15 AM  
Blogger LifeBloom said...

Ladies & Shopping - need we say more????

I have been thinking also about the Lamb Greek Burger ;-))!! But macamanapun - the asam pedas I think will win hands down any day...

9:15 AM  
Blogger anedra said...

Man!! Have not tried that Lamb Burger yet either..Tell us if it's any good!

Sounds like all is well. Your menu sounds almost exactly like our dinner yesterday. asam pedas ikanbaung, ikan goreng, and stir fried vegs. Scrumptious!

Take her to Tesco today and have fun! Glad everything's ok!

9:48 AM  
Blogger thinktankgal said...

Perhaps the next thing for Aunt Su is to mix her with the right people for communication purposes :) Do think about that...

10:05 AM  
Blogger bergen said...

DIM: Please, sir. I am not qualified to be called 'master.' At least until I attain 5th Dan, but for now, Bergen will do just fine.

Likewise, I am lucky to have Aunt Su as the only living relative.

Dr Roza: I have not tasted bubur asyura for ages. I prefer East Coast version.

Anggerik Merah: She's back to her usual self again. Thank goodness.

Noni: You are a Johorean true and true. Asam pedas in the morning with cucur udang.

Lifebloom: Whoever thought out this Greek lamb burger must be a relative of mine.

Anedra: It's gonna be a package trip to Tesco inclusive of lunch, and a little sightseeing each and every aisle.

Thinktankgal: The neighborhood is designed and built for young executives in mind. I haven't come across all that many elderly people around here that I can invite to the house for a meal for Aunt Su to make friends with. Will consider other options.

11:55 AM  
Blogger Queen Of The House said...

First, I am hoping you would slow down on the writing so that I could at least catch up.... but that's pretty selfish of me ;)

Kesian kat Aunt Su. Perhaps you and she could adopt my laundry method - separate everything, which always leaves me with seven or eight loads of laundry to do :)

About your shirts ... take a look at the shelves of laundry products in Tesco. I am sure there is something that helps to remove stains (from whites? from coloureds?). If you find something, let me know - I need it too.

Burger King's Greek Lamb Burger/Sandwich - yes, I've tried. Yes, sedap. But you may need more than one to keep you from going hungry shortly after the meal (I'm remembering how you polished off 2 steaks at one go).

12:48 PM  
Blogger Ikelah said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1:29 PM  
Blogger dr in the house said...

QOTH- you know what I love about you? You have answers for every malady!

Wish you were next door, and I can run to you for anything, and a shoulder to cry on perhaps? hehe

1:32 PM  
Blogger NBB said...


1:50 PM  
Blogger Em said...

Did she enjoy her Tesco trip den?

6:17 PM  
Blogger bergen said...

Comment Deleted: I didn't remove you.

Dr Roza: She should have her own column in the national daily.

Nurul Bahiyah: Checked, ma'am.

Em: Tesco is like Disneyland to her, ma'am. How covenient it is for me as it is right behind our apartment. Imagine staying a few shouts away from Disneyland.

7:15 PM  
Blogger Queen Of The House said...

Heheh ... Household Agony Aunt like that ah?would I even have the time to layan my own column?

3:34 PM  

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