Wednesday, January 09, 2008

From Zero to Hero - Allahyarham Tuan Hj.Abbas Bandung

**Atuk Pakeh and Hj.Abbas Bandung on sarung in the middle and Buya Hamka,ayah far end right.

More info on the vist of Buya Hamka then, visit here.

It was two years ago I wrote in the blog about 'The Minang Connection'(Dec.2005 archives)
The early 'sawo matang' immgrant in Malacca.Malacca or 'Maaalako' with a a thick minang accent as prounounce by my late grandad Hj.Pakeh Temenggong aka Pak Tuo as he is affectionaly know among the minang community in Malacca back then.
He pass away peacefully in 1983,the most remembered is how he was call by his Lord,fell down and rush to home in unconsious state,after locking the last wooden door of his shop preparing to call it a day as usual.
It shows how deep the love for his shop and job .As his shop advertisment written,as I remembered then, 'PAKIH TEMENGGONG MENJAHIT SONGKOK AND CAPAL'.

How I wish I could have that zinc made advertisment both enscript in Malay and Jawi or the very least a photo of it.
That his life proffession and yes if you have met him you would definately fall in love with the wise old gentry.
Man with few word and all day his eye's down to earth,concentrating on what he knew best,on the sewing machine,his only techno gadget and a transistor radio as his companion.
Remain a Bachelor till death after the dismiss of my beloved grand-ma Nenek Sayan in 1968.How many of us still do 'till death depart'with our other half?
How I wonder!!

This written blog is not about him,but about a man who stood on firm ground and remain a loyal friend to Arwah ATUK.
He left a legacy in Malacca and much remembered by all fellows Old Guru-Guru Melayu of Malaccans.
As his name stood High and Tall among the contributors of the development of Malay Interlectuals in post independence era.
He is not a politician,neither do a nationalist but a visionary buisness man which put all his skill of hard work,determination and persistence will WINS.
Malacca in the pre and post Merdekah days was a sleepy hollow.
It slips away being the centre of trade and commerce because largely due to the fact,that Kuala Lumpur the new adminstritive city was laid and shift in 1923.
Since than Malacca lost its centre point.
Thanks to Yap Ah Loy the Chief Capitan MAFIA Cina'.
(If one wants to dispute those facts, pleased clarified it with Prof.Zainal Keling or Prof.Khoo Kay Kim,they are able to clarified futher)

One of the main legecy left by the Brits,is the 2 tiers Education system,the English schools medium and the Malay Medium.As a result of this diversity two set of text books are need and written in Bahasa Melayu and in English.
Without a single doubt,the problemmatic of logistic issues arise in the newly independency nation.
We want Malay schools but no text books writers in Bahasa Melayu,we do not have ample and capable writers in Maths,Science or vocational subjects in Bahasa Melayu and worst of it, we do not have able and qualified teachers to teach in Bahasa Melayu Maths,Science ot technical subject to our children.
As a result,the Kementerian then import Indonesian teachers to teach our children Maths and Science because most of the Malay teachers then,were only capable of teaching sejarah and ilmu alam or Bahasa Melayu then.

Thus,the question arise,where do we get those Malay text books?
In Malacca those days two prominent text bookshop are monopoloised by Lim Brothers and Tai Kuang Bookshop.
They only sell English Text books and mag.
Even me, gets my weekly Beano and Danny comics from Lim Brothers or the Uncle's Aneh shop junction of Jln Bunga Raya.The Hole in wall type of shops.

I remembered well this geniune smiling face Pak Aji.
Short and stout in nature.Always with a 'Songkok Hitam'.
Very loving in nature.Each time I goes to the shop I will always gets a sweets of 'Halls'Lemon in flavor from him.
His shop only stocks Malay book either novels,magazine and the main distributor for Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka in Melaka.Under his wings and supervision the mushrooming of small petty bookshop scattred in Melaka all over.
In Mesjid Tanah,Melimau.Jasin till the far fetch the boundry of Malacca states.The provisional schools are mostly of the Malay medium thus,TOKO BUKU ABBAS BANDUNG provides the missing gap of malay text books to the provisional schools.
The story of success of Tuan Hj.Abbas Md.Yatim has a long history.It is rather not discuss of how he built the book empire in Malacca.He was a dear friend of arwah datuk Pakeh.According to family ledgend,he arrive from Padang,atuk's kampong in view of being a teacher,which he was in Padang.
He teachers Quranic lesson in Kg.Banda Kaba.A pios man,He stays with arwah datuk in Kg.Banda Kaba together with nenek Sayan and ayah in the beginning stage and the rest is history.
I remembered well during my schooling days,when I have free time,I begin with Lim Brothers browsing for the latest Beano and Dandy and next the Tai Kuang ended up at his bookshop browing for latest Antrologi cerpen or novels.My early collection of Grand Pa (Dato'Samad Said)Salina etc...were all from his bookshop including Tongkat Warrant (Usman Awang),Keris Mas,Salmi Manja,Pram Meodya Anantantor,W.S Rendra,Khatijah Hashim,Latif Mohiddin (He is more of a painter),Fatimah Busu including Mastika,Dewan Masyarakat,Salina,Diskusi,Dewan Pelajar etc are still in my home library.Those where the first edition copies and I am proud owner of the first edition copies.

Without a single doubt Tuan Hj.Abbas Hj.Md.Yatim contribution to the malay community is well acknowledged.His buisness acuman without doubt set a precedent to the young new Malay interlectual breed in Malacca.
It is only via his bookshop the accumulation of knowledge grows among the Malay are noted.As the sahih Hadith "seek knowledge till China'

From my logic thought 'seek both knowledge and wealth as Tuan Hj.Abbas Bandung did"
I suppose it is full of barakah on 'hijrah'
and make the Awal Muharram 1429 more meaningfull

Allahyarham Tuan Hj.Abbas Hj.Md.Yatim pengasas 'TOKO BUKU ABBAS BANDUNG'


puteri hang li poh said...

Assalamualaikum, dear Wir,

Thank you for the beautiful eulogy on my late father. Nostalgic memories like this bring tears to my eyes. You were very young then, so cute and inquisitive. I remember very well your Atuk's shop both at Banda Kaba in front of the Police Station and the one at Kampng Jawa. Yes, your Atuk and my Father were very close through thick and thin. They were the Minangkabau clan's heroes then, I should say. But I was too young to understand.

God's will, now I have a new connection with your Atuk's little hero - YOU.

On this first day of Muharram, Cikgu doakan semoga Wir and family mendapat ketenangan dan kebahgiaan serta keberkatan dalam apa jua yang diceburi.

Stay as you are.

Cikgu Nazli & all at home.

ms hart said...

Salam Pak Tuo,

I blog-hopped from Ruby Ahmad's blog and touched I was with this kind jottings on my arwah Atok!! Thank you, Pak Tuo. I am very, very proud of my arwah Atok and very, very priviledged to have been his only grandchild who had the chance to listen to his Kisah Sang Kancil, and also Kisah Pak Pandir every time after his maghrib prayers!!! And of course I remember arwah Atok Pakeh too!! and your father, Uncle Joe!! Thank you again pak Tuo, and have a blessed years ahead. Salam Ma'al Hijrah.

Pak Tuo said...

Salam Cikgu,

Thank you for the kind words.Insyallah.
Why did I do it?
Its because this milk and honey country Malaysia provides ample oppunities to the brave,hard working,determination and peacefully person jes'as our past ancestors.

ms hart,

yes,I remember you.You was at CHIJ together with both my 2 sisters Julie and Emma.
Silatul Rahim Hart..siratul rahim..

ms hart said...

Salam Pak Tuo,

No, no..that's not me. That's my mom's cousin!! I'm in the same batch with Hanif, yr cousin. and I'm the only one who didn't go to CHIJ!! Went to a boarding school instead!

Pak Tuo said...

opppssss..sorry my dear,
That maks you Cikgu niece.Hmmm..let me recall again my dear.
Senang-senang jemputlah kerumah.

alang said...

Salam Pak Tuo/Wir, terima kasih to you too for writing a nostalgic memoir of my late father. I'm CG Nazli's younger sis. I will never forget Atuk Pakeh and Nek Sayan, berat sama dipikul, ringan sama dijinjing. TQ again.

Pak Tuo said...

Mualaikum Salam Mak Lang,

Yes,I remember Kak Long,my antie Rasiah's close friend.She used to to be in the Shop and handling the sales.Then Cikgu Naz,aka PHLP.Then its you Mak Lang,then Bro Shau.he was 3 years senior then me at MHS.
In matter of facts I remembers all the household at arwah's big nice house and the rambutan tree.
The fruits its sweet and 'longkah'.The Ford Cortina(If I'm not mistaken)belongs to arwah.How could forget the nice people.Each Hari Raya arwah will give an am pau of a ringgit to me.Its a big amount those days.I remember well those generous hand.Mak Tuo ie. your mum's genuine smiles and her Kebaya.
Moga Allah mencucuhi rahmat keatas roh-roh mereka.Amin.Al Fatiha