The King and I

Growing up, I used to wonder why my parents really insisted on me speaking in Kelantanese dialect, even when I didn’t want to. Their reason was because the language was their mother tongue and they made it their responsibility to preserve it. They continuously persuaded me to speak and also taught my younger brother and sister, who can now speak the dialect fluently. I quote what my parents said:

“We would be proud to have a child that goes back to their home country and confidently speaks to the local people in their dialect. It would be rude to say ‘Oh sorry, love. I was born and bred in England and I can’t understand a word that you are saying or speak your language.’ And that, my child, is very disrespectful!”

Despite the endless support which was given by my parents, I used to hate meeting other Malaysians in the UK. They made fun of me when I spoke Malay because I was speaking in Kelantanese dialect. I am not talking about kids, I am talking about adults. Most of them had children the same age as me or even older. They laughed at each and every word that came out of my mouth. As a result of that, my confidence to continue speaking Malay was killed and that added to my refusal to speak the language. I questioned a lot, “Why did people make fun of Kelantanese dialect?” but the answer remained a mystery.

Time passed and now I am 10 years old. My parents didn’t stop telling me stories about Malaysia. One day, I heard my parents talking about His Majesty, the Sultan of Kelantan, Sultan Muhammad V. He sounded like an extremely humble, down-to-earth person. I heard many captivating stories about him and his virtuous qualities. He behaves like a common man and prefers to go out without any bodyguards. When a big flood hit Kelantan in 2014, His Majesty rushed out in his truck without anyone accompanying him and aided those in need. He is also occasionally seen voluntarily digging graves with common people. This marvellous Sultan regularly visits mosque and doesn’t claim a special place for himself in the front line. Sometimes, he even leads the prayer himself. He loves his people and wants to be close to their heart, especially on religious occasions. So for the last 10 nights of Ramadan, he opens his palace to the public to let people pray and read Quran all night long. And on Eid ul-Adha, he performs the slaughtering duties himself. To add to his brilliance, he changed the King’s regal salutation from ‘Daulat Tuanku’ (Long Live the King) to ‘Allahu Akbar’ (God is Great) as he is a religious man and strongly upholds his religion. He really is a modest, meek ruler who doesn’t mind to get his hands dirty and is caring about his people.

Finding out that he did all of these wonderful things made me adore him even more. I soon found out that His Majesty was going to be coronated as Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia (the King of Malaysia) and that made me look up to him even more! I was motivated and started to regain my confidence in speaking Malay. If the King of Malaysia can speak in Kelantanese dialect, then why can’t I? Thank you for inspiring me, Your Majesty, a boy in a foreign land! You are one in a million! So let His Majesty be an example to all of us! Be gratified of who you are, never be ashamed of your roots and your dialect but always remember to remain humble so that Together We Can Change The World! NOW I CAN SAY THAT MY NAME IS OMAR MUKHTAR BIN OMAR MUKHLIS AND I AM A PROUD KELANTANESE FROM MALAYSIA!

Written by The Pawsome Lion on 24/04/2017 in conjunction with the coronation of the country’s sovereign, Sultan of Kelantan, Sultan Muhammad V, as the 15th Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia.

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🍰 A Piece of Cake: TOP ATHLETE! 🏆

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A boy was in his sports class, beginning to feel very bored. He was the worst out of everyone. Suddenly, his teacher shouted, “Exercise is important!”

The boy was puzzled as to why his teacher had said this. But, in order to try and impress his teacher, he left the school and ran to the McDonald’s in the next city. After travelling 30 kilometres, he reached a McDonald’s branch and asked, “Could I have 100 buckets of fries 🍟, please?”

He was given the fries for free (as he was their 1000th customer) and ran back to his sports class. When he arrived at his school, he presented the fries to his teacher. “Where have you been? You haven’t exercised!” exclaimed his teacher.

“Exercise? I thought you said extra fries!” said the boy to his teacher, who was watching a crowd of people shout “TOP ATHLETE!”

✍🏻 A Short Story & Doodle by The Pawsome Lion 🦁

🍰 A Piece of Cake: Two Bullets 🔫

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It was mild autumn morning when the case was brought up. My assistant showed me the report of the death of Mr Tom Maguire, the local grocery store owner. He then handed me what seemed to be a suicide note. It read:

‘To my family

Buy the time you have read this letter, I will have ennded my life. You have been great, and I dreat to leeve this world. I’m sory, but I have t to do tis. There is too much deepression, too mush hate and hi want too end it all. Please forgive me. Goodpye.’

“It’s strange,” said my assistant. “Mr Maguire was a stickler for correct grammar. He always hated it when people gave him shopping lists at the store with spelling mistakes all over them.”

“That’s right.” I replied. It was very unusual.

Later on, me and my team went to interview Mr Maguire’s wife, Anna, to see if she knew anything about it. However, all we managed to get out of her was her discovery of two bullet holes in Mr Maguire’s chest (‘It must have been the two-bullet killer’ I thought), a few words of sadness and a series of very loud sobs. We went round to any other members of his family who were living nearby but nobody knew anything.

We came back late in the afternoon. I entered my office and sat behind my desk, where the letter still lay. I read through it over and over again, trying to see if the mistakes were actually clues. Then, it came to me! I quickly looked at the mistakes and wrote down the letters that were supposed to be there. I wrote the letters:

UNDERTHESHOP

I called my team straight away and we set off to the grocery store. My assistant was off ill for the rest of the day. We went down to the cellar of the store. I slowly opened the door – and found my assistant sitting at a table with a huge sea of pictures in front of him. I looked closely at one picture with a red cross on it and saw that it was Tom Maguire. His revolver was in front of him, bloody stains all over it. There were two bullets loaded inside it.

My assistant was given a thirteen year prison sentence and would have a GPS tracker wrapped around his leg. I didn’t get a new assistant, I never knew if they could be a criminal. And as for Anna Maguire, well, she disappeared without a trace.

✍🏻 A Short Story & Doodle by The Pawsome Lion 🦁

🍰 A Piece of Cake: Them

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The day my life changed was the 3rd of August 2013. I can recall it vividly. I was hanging out with my three friends at the park. It was the late evening so there was nobody else there. We were just about to leave when we heard a rustle behind us. We all looked around, but there was nothing there. Thinking that it must have been a squirrel, we turned around and carried on walking. Then it happened. It happened so quickly but it felt like an eternity. A strange aircraft appeared in front of us. A door in the side of it opened and a wide beam of light cut through the trees. My friends were suddenly whisked off their feet and sucked into the weird metal contraption. The door shut with a loud clang. The aircraft rose up and sped away into the now purpling sky. I dropped onto my knees, my mouth open. 😱 I found it hard to come back to my senses after experiencing that. I decided not to tell anybody because they wouldn’t believe me anyway. Now, I never leave the house but from my window, I can see more people becoming victims of alien abduction 👽 and I wonder why I wasn’t one of them.

✍🏻 A Short Story & Doodle by The Pawsome Lion 🦁

🍰 A Piece of Cake: The Smack of Life 👊

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My daily routine doesn’t consist of much. I hardly get any nice surprises.

When I get up in the morning, I normally have to go on a treasure hunt 🔎 around the house to find my cheetah-skin patterned slippers. They are really fast 💨and it’s hard to keep up with them. I knew I should have bought the snail ones; they look ugly but at least I wouldn’t have to crawl on the floor with a net just to get them.

After I have my breakfast (breadcrumbs with milk), I go and do some online shopping. I am often interrupted by the winged rat 🐀 that lives in the attic. It occasionally flies down into my computer room 💻 to chew away at the wires. I have tried to dispose of it but doing so has given me a scar on my arm the shape of a wing.

When I finish doing my online shopping, I have a lunch of cereal and jam. I usually unearth some scarab beetle worm cross-breeds lurking in the cereal box. I wonder how they find their way around the house when they are completely blind. If they could move anywhere, why did it have to be my cereal box? Now my cereal has been turned into box-cereal cross-breeds.

Next up after lunch is my afternoon nap. It is very rare that I am not woken up every 5 minutes by the poltergeists 👻 partying in the basement. And when I say partying, I mean throwing chairs and tables, ripping open the walls and creating several explosions. 💥 I must say, poltergeists have a very peculiar daily routine.

Since my afternoon nap doesn’t last very long (thanks to the very silly poltergeists), I usually like to watch TV 📺 before having dinner. The shows aren’t very interesting; they’re things like ‘Cures for Magical Maladies’ and ‘Tara’s Transfiguration Tricks!’. If I am overcome by the boredom of these TV shows, I resort to the newspaper. 📰 But, the newspaper likes to play up too. I will sometimes be sucked into the finance column 💰 when money is at an all-time low, or into an exceptionally hard puzzle section.  The neighbours get nicer things, like a weather forecast showing that it’s going to be sunny all week or a lifetime food discount.

I then go to bed 💤 after having dinner, which is quite the same as breakfast. I toss and turn for hours before going to sleep because of the irritating crushed Brownie sticks under my mattress, put there by Thambletick, the house Brownie. I guess he’s still angry at me for accidentally flushing one of his friends down the toilet. 🚽 I have to fish the sticks out with my hands every night. Only then can I get to sleep and dream about what I have to do tomorrow, which is always the same as today.

✍🏻 A Short Story & Doodle by The Pawsome Lion 🦁

🍰 A Piece of Cake: Dark…

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I sit on my bed, staring at the pictures on the wall. The room is completely silent except for the constant ticking of the clock. ⏰ I glance up at it – it reads 9:15. There is a sudden thud behind me. I turn around quickly but there is nothing to be seen. ‘I’m probably imagining things’ I think. I turn around to look at the pictures again, only to find a strange dark figure standing behind the lace curtains in front of the window. My heart skips a beat. The figure advances towards me, its feet thumping with every step. I then notice that darkness starts to swallow the objects around me. I am lifted up and thrown across the room, causing me to crash into the wall. My head throbs badly, as if somebody is pounding a hammer 🔨 onto my skull. I scream in agony, but no sound seems to come out from my mouth. I realise I can no longer see my arms, legs or any other part of my body. The atmosphere around me is pitch black. I cry for help, but I know that it is no use, for I have become part of my FEAR.

✍🏻 A Short Story & Doodle by The Pawsome Lion 🦁

🍰 A Piece of Cake: A Book-less Tragedy! 😵

It was the Easter holidays and I was in my dad’s car 🚗, holding a huge pile of books 📚 in my hands. We were going to the library to exchange them for some new ones. When we reached the library, we started looking for a place to park the car. To our surprise, we found that there were hardly any cars outside it.

“Strange…” I said. 🤔

“Oh well, now we’ve found a place to park the car!” my dad said cheerfully. 😃 He hated the long searches for a space to park.

My dad turned the ignition off and unlocked the doors. I heaved the books up and stepped out of the car. Struggling to see above the books, I staggered over to the library’s main entrance – and discovered that all the libraries were closed for the Easter holidays! I couldn’t believe it! How was I going to live without a single book to read? I was sure to die a slow painful death 💀 in a BOOK-LESS world…

✍🏻 A Short Story & Doodle by The Pawsome Lion 🦁