Perks of being a forrester

A month ago, i had the chance to work with an institute involve with conservation of the forest. The offer came in without me expecting and with a twist of fate, I receive a call to ask if i’d be interested to come for an interview. Story cut short, here i was with a friend of mine who happen to go for the same interview as i was not sure if i was qualified for the job, and should i not qualify, perhaps my friend would be a better candidate?

It was just two friends trying their luck for a job we don’t know much until we actually start working there. Then, we were house hunting , while at the same time trying to juggle between getting our job done and trying to understand our job scope.


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All of the sudden we were in the middle of forest collecting baby trees for conservation at their nursery. Mixing compost and soil , planting the trees we collected in the poly bags, labeling and making inventories.

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We also learnt how to wrap the plants so that we can preserve it later for pressing and drying plants. Trees have soul, so even if you want to take it out from its home, we must have good intention and tell the trees that we are taking it for the benefit of people and plants that will grow in other area.So when we pull out the roots, we must quickly wrap with tissue and spray some water to keep it hydrated , and place it carefully inside a plastic bag until we arrive back to our conservation site. Since the hike can take up to few hours or days so the knowledge on how to wrap your plants collection the right way is important for any forester who goes for plants collection.

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Later on we moved to another site where we get to see Rafflesia where it only blooms only once a year for 7 days! Now the Rafflesia is quite a picky flower (with no leafs), since its a parasitic flower, so it relies on the Tetrastigma veins as their host.

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Tetrastigma host vine
And they need both male and female flower nearby to pollinate with the help of the animals to somehow plant the seeds to make a new Rafflesia for next year. Due to its nature, the Rafflesia doesn’t like humans to disturb them, so you cannot touch the flower but just admire the beauty of it.

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Me with Rafflesia, its already dying after they bloom

But then again, after giving myself some time with the work and all, the forest belongs to those who suits this side of the world. As much as i enjoyed learning some of the things they do, but my capabilities are better off in another world that I am more suitable to live in. Still, it was a wonderful short adventure and I thank them for the experience gained!

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That 30 things in life kind of post ;)

1) Take the time to talk to people around you, you never know they might need it.
2) Be interested of what other people is interested about, you might learn one or two from them.
3) Listen to understand …not…to reply, pause before you assume
4) Remove our expectations or we will always feel dissapointed when things doesn’t go our way, but His way.
5) Each person we encounter is an opportunity to learn something about them and about ourselves
6) How we treat ourselves is how others will treat us, be kind to yourself
7) We teach people how to treat us, be selective with who gets to stay 
8) Walk away from negative people, surround yourself with positive people who sees the best in you. 
9) Life is too short to be bothered by what other people think of you, they don’t pay your bills.
10) Spend time with little humans, nature and things that makes you human again. Being lonely and spending time alone is two different. 
11) Inner peace doesn’t necessarily means meditation, sometimes its as simple as taking a deep breath and let go.
12) Let go of things that is keeping you from moving forward, hate, grudges, and all the negativity will not help you become a better person. 
13) Choose to forgive and forget what people did to you, make peace with your past
14) Sleep early …or try getting enough sleep. 
15) Quit or reduce the junk food. 
16) Be open to know people outside your own field or circle. There’s always room for new friends, who knows , they might be your next best friend! 😉
17) See the good in everyone and everything that happens to you, even the bad experience can teach you something
18) If everything gets cancelled, celebrate the free time to spend it to yourself. You deserve a break even if it means spending time alone.
19) Try new things or new experience once a while, teach yourself something you always wanted to try doing but never had courage or time to try it. Invest in your own personal development. 
20) You don’t have to figure everything out, every day is another chance to try something different or nothing at all. Focus on the 24 hour you already have. 
21) Appreciate the small things in life, it adds up to the big things in our life.
22) You don’t have to carry things on your own, some people might be more than happy to help, just ask. 
23) Help when you can, but know when to stop and set your priorities 
24) Sometimes, not helping is helping people to figure things out on their own. You can’t save everyone. 
25) You didn’t fail, you just figure out 1000 reasons why it didn’t work out. Keep trying until you get it right this time. 
26) Go out of your comfort zone, its scary at first, but you’ll figure out.
27) Acknowledge and remember all the things you have been through, self acceptance and self awareness is also an achievements. 
28) Whatever you seek is seeking you too, be true to yourself. Good things will come to you.
29) Faith is the easiest and yet the hardest thing to do. Have faith and tawakkal over everything you do is His plans in making a better you. 
30) Every single things that happens in our life has been written by the one who created you. Rizq comes in many form, a good family, wonderful friends, a healthy body (even if you get sick is an opportunity to remember Him more). So, be thankful that you are still alive to do something about it.
31) Keep on learning…..hehe

Late bloomers

akhir2 ni jadi tempat org minta advice …
bab2 tak tau nak buat apa lepas grad, tak tau passion apa (sedangkan diri sendiri pun lost juga), lambat grad, lambat kawen dari orang lain…lambat….lambat ke? Bagi saya, orang macam ni adalah ‘late bloomers’, lambat berkembang tapi bila dah sampai masa, akan menyumbang kepada bidang yang memang sesuai untuk dia berdasarkan pengalaman yang dia kumpul sebab ‘lambat’ ni.
hurmm mungkin sebab saya ni memang jenis ‘lambat’ gak. Degree extend setahun, patut 3 tahun jadi 4 tahun sebab pergi exchange & masuk hospital sat kena tangguh dua sem. Parents cakap, takpa grad lambat, jadi ‘extended knowledge’.
Bila sambung master, setahun dok buat research quantitative, tup tup tak sesuai methodology, ubah jadi qualitative. Ubah suai thesis ikut cakap examiner, modify tajuk dan rewrite beberapa bahagian dlm thesis. Sebab kita tak boleh ‘paksa’ result tu untuk sama macam teori kalau ‘findings’ dia bukan macam tu.  Sama juga hidup kita..tak boleh paksa nak jadi juga macam kita nak, kalau kita memang tak ditakdirkan untuk dapat apa yang kita nak dan kena lalui proses dan jalan lain untuk sampai ke destinasi yang memang untuk kita. Lepas 4 tahun baru grad, tu pun jenuh kena paksa walaupun rasa nak berhenti je hari-hari hahahaa.
Lepas grad, banyak tolong parents buat research amik gambar, shoot video & my own little research yang saya minat (malay heritage). Mula-mula tu bercampur baur juga la perasaan macam rollercoaster, tapi lama-lama kita boleh terima yang ini satu proses yang penting untuk kita belajar dan berhenti hidup terkejar-kejar, jadi walaupun tak kerja yang bergaji macam orang lain, ada ja kerja nak buat dalam tak ada kerja tetap. Tanpa dirancang, sebenarnya saya sedang melalui proses ‘gap year’, iaitu dengan ‘taking a break’ daripada terus kerja dan buat apa2 bidang yang saya minat untuk tambah skill, orang putih cakap “Self development” tapi sebenarnya ia adalah proses “self discovery” bagi mereka yang tak tahu apa sebenarnya yang dia nak buat lepas ni.
Of cause… tak semua orang ada peluang ni, tapi jika ada ruang, ambillah peluang untuk volunteer bekerja di mana-mana tempat yang boleh tambah skill & pengalaman sesuai dengan minat masing-masing. Tak kira lah jika korang baru lepas grad ke, atau sedang kerja ke, carilah minat masing2 dan cuba sesuatu yang baru yang boleh tambahkan pengetahuan dan kemahiran masing-masing. Panjang atau pendek ‘gap’ yang korang buat terpulang pada korang, yang penting jangan terperangkap dengan routine sedia ada.
Wpun sekadar tukar rutin, dengan mula bersenam,join program2 hiking ke marathon ke, berenang ke, berkebun ke, volunteer ke, wall climbing ke, bermasyarakatlah semula…cari komuniti anda sendiri yang minat dengan apa yang kita minat. Dari situ kita akan belajar kenal pelbagai orang dan buka peluang untuk networking dengan orang-orang yang kita tak tahu satu hari akan membuka peluang baru yang boleh kita teroka & sesuai dengan minat kita.
Itu yang saya belajar sepanjang saya ‘berehat’ sebentar dari ‘berlari’ sebab saya sudah penat terkejar-kejar dalam persaingan dunia yang semakin hilang nilai kemanusiaan, tak ada sense of belonging dan semangat kekitaan dalam komuniti. Sebab saya tengok ramai yang bersikap individualistik dan hanya sibuk dengan dunia sendiri sampai kita terpaksa buat appointment untuk jumpa kawan sendiri sebab sibuk dengan hidup sendiri.
Semakin lama, saya bertanya pada diri sendiri “Apa yang saya kejar?”
Dan saya jadi ‘lost’ sekejap, dan perkara ini saya beritahu kepada si penanya,
“Its okay to get lost, because that’s how you will find yourself. Its okay to take your own time and explore your options, because that’s where you gain experience and learn to know what really suits you in the future. And one day, leads you to someone who is looking for the same thing you are looking for, who will want you because of who you are ” <—ni bukan pasal jodoh je tau, jodoh kerja pun boleh jadi hehe.
Apa2 pun saya memang jenis take my own time, and walk my own path, bukan melawan arus, cuma tak suka terkejar-kejar dengan ‘competition’ dunia. Mungkin dah memang tersurat perjalanan hidup saya memang bnyk detours & reroute….sebab yg plan tu Dia juga.
Jadi, kalau korang rasa macam apa yang saya rasa, bawa bertenang ye..rezeki untuk kita tu tetap ada jika kita berusaha dan bertawakal pada Dia. Kadang-kadang rezeki datang dengan cara yang kita tak disangka-sangka dari sumber , orang, yang kita pun tak sangka.
Jadi, bersangka baik dengan perancangan Allah swt, jika muslim. Jika bukan muslim pun, dalam Islam pun kami percaya yang rezeki sudah ditentukan oleh Tuhan tak kira kamu Islam atau tidak. Yang penting kita berusaha untuk keluar dari situasi yang kita berada. Berbaik-baiklah sesama manusia, bukan kerana nak minta ‘sesuatu’ dari orang tu, tapi kerana kita ikhlas nak berkawan dengan mereka, berjiran dengan mereka, sebab bila kita ikhlas dalam pekerjaan kita, tak kira apa yang kita buat, akan ada je orang nak tolong kita.
Kenapa? Sebab setiap perbuatan kita, ikhlas kerana Allah Taala, sebab kita tahu walapun orang tak balas balik pertolongan kita, Allah swt tahu apa yang kita buat, dan cukuplah Allah swt bagi kita sebab tak ada yang lebih baik yang boleh membalas setiap perbuatan kita melainkan Allah swt. Jadi ‘remove our thinking that ‘people’ owe us for what we do (tapi jangan lah sampai kena pijak atau digunakan), tapi mintalah pada yang memberi rezeki, yang Maha Kaya dan Maha Memberi. Barulah berkat hidup kan?
Gituuuuu….(boleh tulis buku motivasi ni hahaha)

Stories of the Day: Amiera

This post is in response to : Gap Year Option :

Gap year option: Varsity students to get a year off from study

Read More :

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Meet Amiera Eifra , 19years old, who is on her own personal adventure to learn the wonders of Permaculture (‘Permanent Culture’ : a design system for ecological and sustainable living, integrating animals, plants, building, people and community).

Although she’s just finished her foundation in Law, she decided to take a gap year and use her time to reconnect with nature by learning how to grow her own food.

Starting from a two week
Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) Course in Kuantan, which it was internationally recognized to transplant a food forest while at the same time learn how to integrate agriculture without destroying the forest but with the nature itself.

This sparked her dream to become a Permaculturist where she can be fully certified to teach and train future permaculture enthusiasts around the world. Thus she began her journey to learn as much as she can on Permaculture by becoming a volunteer and do her internship in many Permaculture based business around Malaysia.

Up till now, she learnt how to grow her own organic paddy, rode a Kubota, rear chicken, harvest stingless bee and many more. When asked why she chooses this path, she says that its the path that brings her closest to the nature as people become more disconnected with nature in their work that she feels a need to go back to the basics. Although its not an easy task, she enjoys playing with the mud and be in the nature where she belongs.

All of her experience can be followed through her blog where she shares on her ‘Permiventure’ (Permaculture Adventure)



Her advice to young generation who wants to walk a different path like her,

“Choose a path and do it full heartedly!”


2016 was like a rollercoaster of emotion, as i graduated in 2015, everything seems happy, family and friends congratulating,  and so whats next ?  So by 2016, like any graduate, i was hopeful that i will find a job that i like and passionate about although i still didn’t know what i wanted to do.

Without hesistating, i accepted a job to fill in for a vacancy available. I will not mention where and what because its facebook/social media where – professionally speaking, you should never post anything about your workplace on the internet (Rule number 1). Details aside, I didn’t continue my contract, I was not happy , the kind of happy where no matter what happens , you still look forward the next day. Give me any job, i will be very happy to do it, i get from my parents most , a hardworking employee (if there’s anyone more hardworking i know , it would be my parents!)

So i learn that, being good at something doesnt necessarily means that it’s your career but a job you do to fulfill your responsibility as an employee where you work in. Of cause not everyone have the luxury or priviledged to this. But if you do find yourself able to take a break from this, take a gap year and give yourself some time to figure out what you want to do next.

So, i went on helping my parents, sometimes as a photographer, taking photos of their research with community, sometimes makes videos of it, sometimes writing a research paper, sometimes about the people i come across with, simply because i am happy to write about people with such passion and inspirational. Little people making small changes to their community. So most of my friends on facebook would be reading it via ‘Stories Of The Day’ album. It was written out of the spur moment because my head is full of words that i needed to write it down and share it.

Writing came naturally to me, it was never something  I learn professionally. I just write whenever my mind have something to say, and can only be translated through writing. I remember being very excited to write the essay part in english class or exam. And i always wanted to write differently though my teacher never comment or praise  my writing, but i know what my teacher feels through the grade.

Growing up, my writings were sacred, keeping a diary was my refuge. But once it was discovered by my siblings, i was traumatized for some time and stopped writing. I forgave all of you btw, its just necessary that i write this part to connect to the next part.

After years of not writing except for school purposes, i stopped expressing my thoughts unless its exam time. As i enter my university year, i started writing again via blogspot but still i am easily found out online lol! Until one day a friend introduced me to another blog platform where you can anonymously write without revealing yourself. In some way, it helps me to channel my thoughts and whatever in my mind ‘freely’ without worrying what people might think or comment on.

Again, i was still found out by very few people i know who was using the same blogging platform. I deleted right away (even though my followers was growing) and made a new one, strangely, some of the followers consistently can recognize my writing no matter what url i change to haha.  So i gave up and just continue writing.

Tbh, i didnt like having that many followers, that button shouldnt exist! It makes you feel insecure of how many people are reading your posts, it took me some time to believe that people actually follows your blog because they enjoyed reading your posts. I see this from the comments and messages i received based on my posts . But i never take my writing seriously until i contributed the articles to The Vocket on my experience staying with Malay community in Capetown.

I was rather surprised by the feedback and happy that people appreciate and enjoyed reading it. For me, as long as the message i want to share with my readers received well, i am already happy even though i didnt get anything from it (it was done for free because i wanted more people to know about the malay community in capetown rather than about me going there).

Coming back to Malaysia, it took me a while to get myself adjusted to the attention people gave me both in Capetown and Malaysia. Not to say that i am now somewhat famous, but at least to those who has been following my journey, they were quite receptive to see the writing side of me. Some suggested that i write books, or documentary script, document it in something written but all i really want that time is to take a break from the whole social interaction that i had almost everyday. As much as i love meeting people, i also needed my own time to recharge and relax my mind from everything happening around me.

Psychology says i might be an ambivert , one who enjoys both socializing like extroverts do but also takes refuge in  her own solitude ‘mind palace’. Other names, might be extroversion introvert, but i think everyone have their own side which they most strongly connect with. Only that people might be selective with who they open up to or connect with, but other times can actually act like normal human being and not subjected to particular label or non existent boxes in their mind.
However, its thanks to the articles i shared in The Vocket, ithat made me realize, writing can be an influential and powerful communication tool to all kinds of people depending on the kind of message you want to post. It brings together the like minded people who is interested in the same thing we are passionate about or attract new readers to want to know more about what you wrote, as long as your intention is right.

I learn that you cant continue to hide your talent because one day it will show or someone will find out your talent. And if we keep on surpressing it and denying that we are good at something, we are injustice about who we are and the gift that God have given to us to do something forwhatever talent He gave us.

So, i started to accept that i might be a writer (or a ‘storyteller’ to some ) though not yet a book writer, but at least have written a fair amount of  things i wrote in different platform, academically or not. But it is up to me to write my life in the next 365 days. So every day is a chance for me and anyone reading this to write a new page. Although we cannot rewrite our past that brought us to where we are now, but we can certaily write the present which is, today! So, write a good one and may everyone of you have good year ahead! Happy new year!

*Slowly writing my own path…..


Turning 30 was easier than i expected (although i was rather anxious the day before. Haha) but waking up like its just another day, dont make me feel any different about it. I kinda like my age right now, the number is ‘even’ now haha! 
Just a little tip, whenever you turn older, go meet someone older than you and ask them about their experience in life haha! For some reason, i felt a bit calmer when i hear about other peoples experience in achieving their life, the choices they make, the things they do, and how they started their career and reach where they are now, makes you feel like we have more to look forward to than the things that is holding us back in the past. Hehe thanks you know who you are 😉
My life has been a long detours and rollercoaster ride, thanks to all my ups and downs, pauses and stops ive had to face for the past 30 years, that brought me to where i am. Who i am today were because of the past experience i go through, our experiences and mistakes in life is preparing us to be who we are today. And at least, other than a lesson learned, some made into a good story i sometimes share with selected few and had a good laugh of the things that happened in the past. My life have become more interesting thanks to it!
Alhamdulillah for the past 30 years, and insyAllah to the years to come. May Allah swt continue to give us more time to learn and become a better person everyday and contribute back to people around us for as long as Allah swt have written for us. Thank you again for the wishes and prayers, may Allah swt grant your prayers and reward you with what is best for you too! 
And alhamdulillah to everyone who came into my life, whether or not they stay or not, thank you for being part of the chapters in my life. It has been a wonderful journey and i look forward for whatever lesson and experience that has been written for me! To reach 30 years old is also rezeki. Okayyyy….😉



A friend of mine said
“I waste so much things on the little things, good friends that could have make a difference in my life , and being too caught up with what other people would think of me instead of what I want to do in life…but despite all, all the mistakes I have done, I don’t want to regret any of it and accept it as they are because it wouldn’t have made me into the person I am today”
this sums up everything I don’t regret !
I really do wish that I would have done more to save certain relationship (not necessarily love) , but friends whom i unfriended because of our differences, or remove from my life due to personal reasons etc.
But then again, if i didn’t do that, i would not realize all the people who really cared about me and loved me for who i am. Some, came back to make up for the mistakes they have done towards me, only for me to realize that i miss them as a friend more than i used to hate them back then.
Some I initiated to make it up to them(im not a perfect either!) due to certain issues we had back then , some despite driving them mad every now and then..slowly grow our friendship to the ‘mature friendship’ , while some friends that I never expect would turn into very good friends , whom i would pass by without making any effort to get to know more, cross path with mine again and turn out to be wonderful friends.
And its also funny that some, we hated each other for who we thought we were until we somehow we were thrown in the same boat (metaphorically) and had to depend on each other to keep our boats going until we reach our destination.
So, it taught me that sometimes, all we need to do is give that person a chance by getting to know them a little bit better and then decide whether or not this is the kind of friends or people we want to continue to be friends with because its really important to choose who we surround ourselves with.
Because sometimes, we will also attract negative friends and we need to be very careful not to mistake friendship with ‘friends with benefits’. So when we remove the negative people around us, we can then make room for positive people to come into our life. But, sometimes the negative people is good for us too, because you learn how to deal with difficult people and you learn how to be a better communicator or PR for instant.
But, what i learn most of all is that, if we can’t find a good friend, be one! Because eventually, we will attract the right kind of friends, and as we grow, we don’t really need a lot of friends, only those whom we can count on, those we know would be there for us, and those whom we don’t really have to contact with all the time, but when we do, we could just pick it up where we left off…and just be ourselves.
So yeah, regrets only comes when we tend to think of the things we could have done better, or people who is no longer in our life that is not meant to stay, and stuffs that we wish we could have but maybe, just maybe we are better off without the things we want, but appreciates whatever we already have , is what we need.
I remember watching a video on a story about a poor man who was very happy to dip his biscuit in a river and shout “Alhamdulillah for this!”, as the King pass by he was amazed how happy he was to have only a biscuit and dipping it in the river before eating it with such gratitude. And so the King asked what is the secret behind his happiness.
So the poor man said, “My King, would you give half of your Kingdom if you were thirsty but that is the price you have to pay when there is nothing in the world except half of your Kingdom to pay for a glass of water?”
The King replied “I would have given all of my Kingdom if I have to!”
And the poor man replies “So why should I not be grateful for the One who provides me this biscuits is the King of the Kings? Allah swt who owns all the wealth in this world?”
Then there was another story of how this person in Rasulullah SAW time, who came up to the Prophet SAW to ask him to make dua for him to be rich! Reluctantly beloved Prophet SAW replied
“The little you have, if you are thankful, is better than the abundance you have but you cannot carry it”
For three times, the Prophet SAW replied the same thing when the person insists that he makes dua for him. Finally, the Prophet SAW gave in, and made dua for that person to be rich. And so that person’s wealth multiplied, his sheeps doubled and tripled to a point where he have to take out Zakat from the excess wealth he have to be distributed for those in need. Zakat is an obligatory to give out for muslims who have excess wealth and income according to Islam teachings. But this person refused to give out to a point he makes excuses not to pay zakat and find ways to avoid from giving out his wealth.
Finally, Prophet SAW stops asking him to pay zakat due to an ayat from Allah swt about this person.
And this person wealth continues to multiply to a point he cannot manage it anymore and he wanted to give it away as zakat. By then, he was missing his prayers and all the things a practicing muslim should do because he was too busy with his business. Since that Allah swt warns the Prophet SAW not to accept any zakat from this person in the future, this person never get to give his zakat and his sheeps and other livestock continues to multiply that he have no space to keep it to himself. Even until the Caliphate times up till Caliph Uthman bin Affan time, this person died without being able to give out zakat. Only Allah swt knows what is his fate in the afterlife.
So coming back to what Prophet SAW said,
“The little you have, if you are thankful, is better than the abundance you have but you cannot carry it”
Try not to see what others have as something that you envy not having, because every one of us are made for different purpose and given rizq in many forms and ways. To have good friends we can count on…while others are alone when they needed one…is rizq, to have parents who is still alive while others wish they still have one of them… rizq, to have a home while others may not even have a roof…is rizq, to live in peace while others risk their life trying to live another day ….is rizq., to be able to breathe..while others rely on oxygen tank… is rizq, to be able to eat, chew, and enjoy our food while others may not even know if this is their last meal…is rizq, to have a good working body and healthy while others might be hospitalized….is also a blessing …but most of all..the greatest gift we all have…is to be alive…and still be given a chance to do something about our life…is rizq from the Most Generous and The Giver, the King of the Kings!
“So which of the favors of your Lord would you deny?” (Ar Rahman, 55:33)