Our Minister neighbour held a berbuka puasa function at his house last night. How did I know that? Because I saw a white kemah in their garden eversince Saturday and there were many cars parked outside our house yesterday evening.
I was admiring their white kemah from our porch. Very nice… with scallops and a grand chandelier attached at the centre. “Cantik kan kemah diaorang, yang? I wonder where they get it from… “, I asked MrNordin. He said, “Alah… menteri2 ni, adalah supplier diaorang…” I guess so.
I was looking for that particular kemah & chandelier for my party last July ~ I first saw it at MrNordin’s Datin friend’s house during her birthday party ~ but I couldn’t get the exact same one. Chandelier tu ada lah, tapi I think ours was a cheapo one. (of course, my husband is not a Dato' or Tan Sri. He's just an Encik. Mana nak lawan their chandeliers, kan?)
If some of you were wondering if we were invited to the berbuka puasa, the answer is no. We’ve never been invited to any of their functions (not that we want to go anyway!). Neither have we invited them to ours eventho’ my MIL kept on pestering us to invite them whenever we do ours. Oh please lah, mak! I feel it's a bit awkward to suddenly invite them over. Maybe because he is a full Minister. Kalau ajak karang, dia ingat kita nak favours from him (which is usually the case). Anyway, I don't think they have time for social gatherings like ours because they have had enough of the official ones already.
I guess having a Minister as your neighbour, one can’t expect him to behave like your normal neighbourhood friend. So far eversince I stayed at that house, I’ve never met the Minister himself. His wife and kids adalah, even then, at the club or when we were driving out. The closest I got to the Minister was the other day when we left for work at the same time. His official car was just behind me. But when his car overtook mine, I could not see him because there was a drape shielding his rear window. Cis!
So if you asked me if I knew my neighbour, I would say yes, from the newspapers only.
However, our kids are friendly with each other ~ “Friendly” in the sense they talk to each other through their bedroom windows (it's THAT close!). Sometimes I heard them shouting at each other, or asking one another this and that. They were neighbours even before the Minister became a Minister and before they moved to the current houses. I guess that's how they knew each other. Their maids are also friendly with my maid. That one no need to explain lah, kan?
Eventho’ I’ve never met my neighbour, I know of their existence because every once in a while, the lady of the house would send us some goodies, usually kuih or other food stuff. Every hari raya, they’ll send us a hamper or gift, without fail. Sometimes we balas, sometimes we don’t.
And sometimes, we would receive strange things from them in the form of fishes, turtles and the like. These, I know, are from their children. That day, when I got home from work, I saw a fish bowl on the table with two gold fishes in it. I asked, mana dapat ni? Nadim said, “F*** gave. (F**** is the neighbour’s youngest son). He said the oxygen supply for the fish ran out. He was afraid the fishes would die and so he gave them to us.”
I think his parents were not at home at that time and he couldn’t go out to get it fixed, so he gave the fishes to us knowing that our house is a pet sanctuary. And the other day, the boy came over at the gate, asking if he could borrow some turtle food palette for his tortoise. Things like that…
Despite being strangers living side by side, we are thankful to them for the existence of their security guards and policemen who do their rounds 24/7. This provides some sort of comfort to us whenever we are not at home for we know burglars may think twice about coming to our house (nak mampus?!). Actually, along that stretch of road, we are the only one without a guard house. Rumah orang lain semua ada guard!
So, the other day we were joking, let's just build a guard house infront of our house. Then we put a dummy inside (you know, like the one you see by the road side, waving a flag to caution passers-by of road works?) to deceive burglars that we also have a security guard 24/7! Hee.. hee... and he's FREE!!
Anyway, I'm going to make a difference this raya. I've ordered a special cake as a raya gift for my invisible neighbour. My first time. And why am I doing this? Because I'm feeling a little generous this year...
And I'm trying to be a good neighbour.