Tuesday, October 18, 2016


The eulogy I did not get to share in person.

One of my earliest memories of Datuk, and arguably one of my earliest memory in general, would have to be laying in Datuk’s arms of heavy cigarette smell, and playing with his dark, rough hands and fingers before falling asleep. As you may see in this photo, Datuk was bottle feeding a baby. That baby was me, and having him in my life from the very beginning and knowing that he’s no longer around now is extremely hard for me. I’m glad Audrey is the one doing this on my behalf, as I know I won’t be able to pull myself together through the whole thing.

I would like to share the happy moments I had with Datuk, and how proud I am to be this amazing man’s favourite granddaughter. Every morning as a child, he would take me out together with Popo to the market to have breakfast with his friends, then buy groceries for the day. My favourite part is when I would get my daily treat from the tuck shop, and he would never ever forget that part. I remember how he would be boasting about me to his friends and it was obvious that I was his pride and joy. Even though it was really embarrassing then, I could remember Datuk showing me off at the coffee shop. When I started kindergarten, he would drop me off to school in his dated Austin with a mini fan attached inside (it didn’t have in built air-conditioning). Silly little me, I was so ashamed of coming to school in that car, that I would slide down in my seat so my friends won’t see me, say good-bye to Datuk, and made my exit really quickly. Of course it would not be the case if I was seen in one of those vintage cars now. I hope I didn’t hurt his feelings back then.

Now that he’s no longer here, and I have to accept the fact that things are not the same again, I want the world to know how proud I am to have a Datuk like him. How my childhood would have been so different if it wasn’t for him who tended to my scrapped knee, hugged me when I got a scolding by Popo, and hand-sewn Batu Seremban (the old school ‘5 Stones’ game) in the shape of pyramids so that I can have a better grip to learn the game faster.

Datuk was the one who patiently taught me random but useful life skills like Chinese calligraphy, how to get all the meat out of a crab, how to gut Ikan Bilis, how to tell if Popo won or lost a mah jong game, how to dodge the uncle who pinches my cheeks every time we went to the markets, and how to be nice to the naughty neighbour’s kid. He taught me integrity, patience, honesty, and trust by showing it to me in how he lived his life.

I’m proud of my Datuk who showed unconditional love through his marriage, which gave me assurance that I should only marry someone who loves me like how Datuk loves Popo, which I did ;)  I’m proud of my Datuk who lived a selfless life and was always ready to help others. I’m proud of my Datuk who has been so strong and determined to be independent in his final days when his physical body gave way.

I wish I could relive the times when I was still under Datuk’s care, when I would count the moles on his back, help him tie his fishing lines with colourful fake fish, and when I would lie in his sturdy arms, and play with his fingers before falling asleep. I miss you so much, Datuk. I promise I will live my life reflecting the many things you have taught me, and will never ever forget the great times I had with you. Goodbye my Datuk.


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