Saturday, February 20, 2010

Padang Tengku

Padang Tengku is situated about 30 minutes drive from Kuala Lipis. The earlier mode of transport was by train. However, currently most people would travel by car or bus.

My memories of Padang Tengku was about the the time I was 11 or 12 years old. It was tough for me. It a very young age I have to be independent. I remember i was about 11 years old and had to be separated from my parent. My father must had decided to send me to PT, another school, about 30 km away. I do not know why, I suppose the condition of my school at kampong KK was not good enough. Let me explain how the KK school was.

It was using a single block, single storey, There were 3 rooms, if can call it rooms, because it was separated by movable divisors. There was only 3 teachers for a primary school. Of course there was 6 classes. I still wonder how we ever managed. There was no english teacher, I think non can speak a single word of english at the village. But somehow, we manage to learn, some of us came out and hold high position in the government and in private sectors. There were long table and long benches to seat 3 of the student. No canteen, no running water, no electricity, no gardeners. So twice a week, the students would take the sickle from the store and spent the early morning cutting the grass on the compound. When the bell rang, we rushed to the well to wash out feet, for majority did not wear any shoes.

So I completed my 2 year of primary school in PT. At least I had a bit of English. Not enough for me to speak. It was time for me to move on. There were not much choice in those years. The choice were:

1. Stop schooling
2. Arabic School
3. Sek Menengah Kebangsaan
4. English school in Lipis.

And my father decided to send me to English school, my elder brother to Malay school, and next sister to Arabic School. Both are doing well, my brother was a District Officer and my sis is a head master at Sri Lipis.

Kampong Beralas.
I stayed at Kampung Beralas, I have not been there for a very long time now. It was a heavily populated kampong as compared to mine. So my father and Atok had built a small hut, a pondok. That was a common thing in those days, as the hostel concept was new. So there were 6 of us. As the hut was so small, there was barely enough space to lay down for the night. As I was the youngest, I slept next to the stove.

It was a natural and organic stove, What I mean is we used firewood to cook. So we made a wooden frame about 3X3 ft and about 6 inches high. Fill it with the earth soil, like an insulator. Then get some iron to put the pots and pan. So it became a routine to go about in the kampong to look for firewood.

Those days, there was no running water and electricity, so, like everyone in Beralas, use the river, sungai Jelai. We had to carry the water for the kichen. It was a rather long walk, climbing down a steep river bank, walking on a patch of paddy field. Then another 50 yards of maize field to the river.

Just across the river was selvon estate, I think, it was one of the british estate when they colonise Malaysia, probably now is taken over by malaysia. The only mean to cross the river, was by ferry, It was a smart design, as it use the power of the water to move the ferry across. There was a set of two strong cables held at both sides of the river banks. The ferries were attached to the cable, and the ferries were positioned at about 20degrees against the current, thus pushing it forward,

Chasing for the Durian

There were a few durian trees growing in the village. It had been the tradition that the tree id not belong to anybody, although they actually were in someone's property. So when the fruit season came, everyone can pickup the fruit. I remember a big tall tree near the bank of Sungai Jelai, with alot of fruits. That afternoon, there was thunderstorm with strong wind, so we rushed towards the tree, as the wind blew, the fruits started to fall, and we were waiting under the tree. That time there was no feeling of fear that the thorny fruit could hit your head. I will not do it again, never ever.\

Padang Tengku is situated about 30 minutes drive from Kuala Lipis.


  1. I was born in Padang Tengku ,49 years ago..., but have little memories about the father and mother was a teacher at the Arabic school and they move to Kuantan when I was about 2 or 3 years old.I hope to visit the town and see the difference now..

  2. kalau tak silap, Semasa itu sekolah arab padang tugku masih private, ustaz husin (gemok) memulakan nya, dan pelajar nya tinggal dipondok, masak pakai dapor minyok "semawar".
    sekarang dah berubah..

  3. Tinggal di kampung beralas tahun 81, darjah satu masa tu. ayah mengajar di sekolah agama padang tengku masa tu. ayah ada cerita pasal arwah ustaz hussin.