Posted by: y4ku24 | January 28, 2009

My Father, the ‘Ambassador’

(Blog update: After a few ‘heavy’ topics, I think it is best that I touch on the lighter side of life (well, not that light I guess!). Below is just another monologue from me, reminiscing my late Father. Kinda ‘chicken soup for the soul’ story for our family. P.S.: January’s This Month’s Feature will be out on the 30th insyaAllah! The title: ‘Kenapa budak Cina Malaysia power matematik?’. Check it out!)

As many of you have noticed in my recent entries, my family and I had the opportunity to live abroad in a humble town called Edinburgh, the capital city of Scotland. We stayed there for 3 and a half years, accompanying our beloved Father throughout his studies there. Similar to all the Malaysians here, we were sent to a nearby school called Hailesland Primary School during our stay.

Edinburgh's Coat of Arms...No clue as to what is written on the top!

Edinburgh's Coat of Arms...No clue as to what is written on the top!

The teachers there were very cooperative. Upon knowing that we were Muslims, the teachers took some precautions as to our needs and things that are prohibited for us, like letting us use a small playroom for us to pray Zuhr during the lunch break, and excusing us from attending the Sex Education class, since our Malaysian parents decided that it was a bit too early for us to learn such things. (Got a whole hour playing with play doughs and legos every week. Yahoo!)

For my family in particular, as a show of gratitude, we invited them to our house during our Eid open house party and let them try some of the delicious cookings my mother made. Us kids would then be very happy as to explain to our teachers about the dishes and about our culture.

That was around 14 years ago. Oh how time flies! Last month, my family had the opportunity to revisit Edinburgh again during their tour in the United Kingdom. (All of the family went, except for me and my brother, who had work). From what they told us after their return, the school (and the city itself) have changed a lot! Even the name of the school changed to Canal View Primary School after merging with a nearby school. The headmaster and the good ol’ janitor we knew before have passed away, but they were happy to know that most of the teachers whom thought us 14 years ago are still teaching there!

Sadly it was very unfortunate that during their visit, most of the teachers have left the school already, since there was a new policy of a half day school on Friday. But they didn’t forget to write a short letter to them to tell them how the whole family is doing and a thank you note for the teachers who knew us.

Just as they were about to leave the school gate, a female voice was heard shouting from the back:

“Mrs. Shah! Mrs. Shah!”

It was Mrs. Sinclair, the teacher who taught my youngest sister in kindergarten. What coincidence! I guess she was surprised to see her once cute pupil sometime ago grown up to be a teenage girl! They talked, and she was very sorry to hear that our Father have passed away. After 14 years (and probably many other foreign and Malaysian families living there after us), we were surprised to know that she still remembers!

Mrs Sinclair with her former student (left)

Mrs Sinclair with her former (naughty) student on the left.

Soon after their visit, I received an email from another teacher of ours, Mrs. Duffy. She was very sorry she hadn’t had the chance to meet up with the family. But what she wrote in the email really touched all our hearts. This email answered our question as to why they still remembered us:

‘I felt extremely proud of you all when I read how you have all progressed and what you have achieved in life. Mum must be very proud of you also – as would Dad have been – I was so sorry to hear of your loss. Mrs Mackay, Mrs Bennett and I were discussing the times your were with us and we all remember the fantastic party your family invited us to at Eidd in your home. It was wonderful and the story has been told to many teachers who came to join the school later. Sadly it has never been repeated by any other family – so you were truly unique…You and your family have been excellent ambassadors for your country…’

We reminisce the times when our late Father would invite not just Malaysian students and friends, but also his supervisors, his non-Muslim friends and our teachers for our open houses. How that kind of exposure made us to be who we are today.

Looking back, we knew we didn’t deserve the ‘truly unique’ and the ‘excellent ambassador’ title.

Our late Father did. A great ambassador of Malaysia, and also Islam.

O Father, may Allah bestow upon you His Mercy in your resting place and in the hereafter, and may we meet again as a family in Paradise. Amiin.

Missing you dearly,

Your children.



  1. amiin!

    *salam ziarah!

    • @xanax: salam ukhwah! πŸ™‚

  2. Y4ku24…
    Seronok membaca pengalaman kamu sekeluarga di sana. Mungkin kak su tak berpeluang untuk merasai pengalaman sebegitu. Lagipun, setiap kali ada keinginan nak ke luar negara, hati selalu berkata, ‘Dok dlm aircond pun dah menggigil gila, inikan pula nak kenegara yg bersalji. Ahh… lupakan saja. Nantikan ada yg dok dalam selimut je.’

    • sejuk tak sepjg tahun kak! πŸ˜€

  3. Met with ur father once but not really remember when, but it was at ur house at KL. We were invited to hv dinner at ur house that night.
    Sorry to know about ur father. Al-Fatihah~

    • That is my parent’s nature. Very hospitable people.

      Thank you for your doas. πŸ™‚

  4. Salam…

    With respect to explanation about Edinburgh’s Coat of Arm, you can read about it here.

    • salam.
      thank you for the input! you a student in Scotland? nice to know ya! πŸ™‚

  5. u make me cry each time reading..
    Ayah is the ‘truly unique’ and ’embassador’ to all.
    he taught us to be who we are today.

    Ayah,may you rest in peace..seriously missing you!!

  6. thinkg back..i want royalty.
    u know
    but if it wasnt for u,i wouldnt get da mail pn.ahaha

  7. salam..
    long time no naughty eh?ya right..i don’t even remember a lot the days 14 years back..anyway,ayah truly is da greatest father..really2 missing u,ayah..

  8. WOW!!!

  9. salam…

    tiba2 rasa nak respon… saya dah baca semua artikel yang berkaitan dengan ayah en luqman… it sounds good…sebelum tu sy nak ucapkan takziah…insyaAllah rohnya aman dan tenang di sana… didikan ayah en luqman sangat terkesan pada en luqman sehinggakan apa yg saya nmpak en luqman menjadi seorang yang berfikiran kritikal…dan satu lagi sehingga en luqman menjadikan ayah en luqman sebagai idola…sehinggakan en luqman boleh mengeluarkan statement aku nak jadi mcm ayah…

    tapi,(just want to share) dalam dunia ni semua benda berpasangan…ada baik,ada buruk…ada juga anak yang mengeluarkan statement aku tak nak jadi macam ayah… sehingga menjadikan seorang anak itu anak yang terbantut pemikirannya kerana tekanan… mungkin terlalu kejam kalau saya katakan ayah itu tak pandai mendidik, mungkin ayah silap mendidik…it sound better…

    kepada semua pembaca,baik atau buruk ibu bapa kita, mereka tetap ibu bapa…cuma mungkin kita perlu kuat untuk menerima keadaan itu…semua itu ujian yang Allah datangkan pada kita… =)

  10. a touching story. may your late father rest in peace and be present in jannah without any punishment.insyaAllah..amin..
    may Allah give us strenght and hidayah, amin.

    • terima kasih. πŸ™‚ amiin. salam perkenalan

  11. salam..
    just to add up..nape xde lg entri2 my mother my heroin?
    maybe an entry dedicated for mothers day..=)
    mesti ummi

    • salam.
      tgh bertungkus lumus dengan research, so memang susah ar nak tulis artikel panjang. kamu la tulis pulak!

  12. bdk scotland…die ni la dlm class aku dlu..mule2 serabut gile nk tulis jawi.but then after that,selamber boleh pintas markah arab,ble lg nk sampai ke umah aku kat kg?

  13. cool article..i talked about holding a reunion for the second generation of edinburgh with ur siblings the other day.tapi online reunion la kot.this story makes u officially in charge of that event.hehe

    nak emel Mrs Duffy jugak boleh?even though we were closer to Mrs Kidston and Mrs Smith,tapi maybe she’ll remember us email is!

    Muhammad ibn Kamaruzaman πŸ™‚

  14. i discussed holding an online reunion with the 2nd generation of edinburgh with ur siblings the other day.this post officially makes u in charge πŸ™‚

    could u mail me Mrs Duffy’s email address please?we were closer to Mrs Smith and Mrs Kidston but there’s a chance she’ll remember email is!

    Muhammad ibn Kamaruzaman

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