A Book, A Table, and Thou
Any book that takes a look at Terengganu (or Trengganu as it is still in my heart) is a reason for celebration. My friend and fellow Sulaimanian (i.e. of the Sultan Sulaiman School - primary and Secondary), To' Puan Rosita, has published a real compendium of joy, a book on Terengganu, its food and history. And To' Puan has a foot in each of Terengganu's two main communities: she was born into the Chinese community of Kampung China and is now married to a member of the Terengganu royalty. I remember her from school, and as luck would have it, when I went back to launch my book on Trengganu three Decembers ago now, she remembered me. So let us now all drink a little teh tarik to memory, to Terengganu, and to our To' Puan Rosita for she's a jolly good lady.
On the two occasions that I went to her house in Kuala Lumpur her dining table was heaving with baked and roasted and fried and banana-leaf wrapped Trengganu fare. And there I met again many, many old Trengganu friends, and I use 'old' here merely to denote that I have known them for a long time but they are all of course very young still.
By kind invitation, I shall be back for the launch of To' Puan Rosita's pride and joy, a coffee table book called Kulit Manis: A Taste of Terengganu's Heritage, whose cover I have stolen from my friend Pok Ku's blog and reproduce here):I quote now from the press release from the office of To' Puan Rosita:
"The launch, to be held at the Mayang Sari ballroom and foyer of the J W Marriott Kuala Lumpur will be attended by DYMM Tunku Ampuan Besar Negeri Sembilan Darul Khusus Tuanku Aishah Rohani,YMM Tengku Ampuan Bariah Terengganu, Minister of Information,Communication and Heritage,Dato Seri Utama Rais Yatim, Minister of Tourism Dato Sri Dr Ng Yen Yen and other dignitaries. Sales of the book will go to Yayasan Prihatin's Slow Learner Programme, which has to date, benefited many rural Terengganu students with learning disabilities. "
This will be on 20th June as you already know from the charity fundraiser ticket in your hand. If you're telling me now that you don't have a ticket for the lunch, then here's what you should do. Do contact the Kulit Manis people at firstname.lastname@example.org very quickly.
And I quote once again from the Kulit Manis press release:
"The launch is also a fundraising drive in aid of Yayasan Prihatin. Tables will be sold at RM3,000 (silver), RM5,000 (Gold) and RM10,000(Platinum).Gold and Platinum diners will receive a hardcopy of Kulit Manis: A Taste of Terengganu’s Heritage; for Platinum corporate diners, in addition to the 10 books received, a weekend getaway for two at Tanjong Jara Resort will be offered (please refer to the invitation card for more details). Other diners will be receiving a specially designed Kulit Manis apron and or commemorative caps as a mark of appreciation. Luncheon is Terengganu fare from recipes featured in the book,its preparation and cooking personally supervised at the JW Marriott kitchen by To’ Puan Rosita A batik fashion show will be staged as well as entertainment."
And in all this I shall - God willing - be playing a very small role. Kak Teh and I shall I be there of course and I hope to see you all, if not at the table, then perhaps we'll bump into each other at the Bazaar in the Ballroom foyer (between 11 - 6.00pm). There'll be Terengganu food and craft there for you to buy and the book will be on sale at a promotional price of RM225.
And if you're up early on the morning of Thurdsay 17th, To' Puan and I shall be on NTV7 for their 8.30 morning show where the To' Puan shall be talking about the making of the book and I shall be sitting there fighting jetlag and the after-effects of a surfiet of Trengganu food from her table.
Later, when I'm more awake, I shall be conducting writing workshops in Terengganu, for the Yayayasan Prihatin sponsored students most certainly, and in a few other places too if time allows.
For More Kulit Manis, go to Pok Ku's blog HERE.