Friday, January 01, 2010

UPM and durians

I submitted this short story at CitiOfSharedStoriesKualaLumpur:

It was a breezy Saturday afternoon in 1997, a year before I graduated from UPM - University
of Agriculture, Malaysia. My flatmates and I decided to go for a volleyball game at the University's expo site - also known as Bukit Ekspo. Its lush green plus a few man-made lakes made it a famous spot for students to hang out on lazy weekends. The athletic ones would jog or cycle around the area. It's a huge compound where the university's annual Convocation Expo would be held.

Bukit Ekspo is situated about 1KM from the main gate and we had to take our motorcycles. There were four of us riding two Honda bikes. Back then, we didn't have much money to spend on expensive shopping tours at the Kuala Lumpur city so we spent most weekends together at the flat, went gossipping at the library or did power walk at Bukit Ekspo. However, that Saturday we decided to play volleyball.

There were durian trees planted along the main road to Bukit Ekspo. I was once told there were more than 10 types of durian that can be found in UPM area. It's an agricultural university where many researches take place, so it's not a surprise to have that many durians.

It happened to be the durian season. We saw green thorny durians high up on the trees as we ride our bikes along the lonely main road. Most cyclists and power walkers would take the alternative routes as they're shorter. We slowed down and finally stopped our bikes just to admire the king of fruit hanging on the trees. The fence along the road was high; so all we could do was stand by the road side and salivating for a taste of durian.

'Let's pray at least one durian would fall,' said my friend Nonie.

'Let's pray that four would fall,' added my other friend, Fid followed by small laughters.

'I don't think it's time yet,' said Mar who looked like some scientist scrutinizing each fruit.

'If they're meant to be ours it would fall,' I tried to sound optimistic.

We stood there checking one tree after another and silently prayed in our hearts that the durian would fall. Fid, who was a student doing a Bachelor Degree in Agricultural Engineering told us that many of the durian trees there were the D29 type which also meant that they're among the best in Malaysia. Nonie and I were doing Electronics and Computer Engineering so we have no idea what type of durian we were staring at. We only recognized the thorns and the smell. We couldn't even differentiate Malaysian durians from those imported from Thailand.

After a short briefing on durian by Fid we decided to continue our short journey to Bukit Expo before the area got too crowded with people. Just when I was about to kick my bike's starter we heard a thud. All four heads turned and we screamed in unision, 'DURIANNNNNN!!!!!'

Miracles did happen and prayers answered. They materialized in the form of a falling durian. That was the most beautiful durian I ever saw on the ground. It's the durian all of us have been salivating and praying for.

We didn't want to waste any time so I took out a screw driver from underneath my bike's seat. It took me on thirty second to open the durian using my screw driver. In the absence of a big knife or 'parang', a screw driver always came in handy in any durian situation.

The four of us sat on the grass and enjoyed God's gift from the sky. UPM is such a rich and generous university, students can get durians for free!


jfook said...

Haha Im from UPM too. My hostel mates used to go curi jagung behind our faculty. LOL

D.N.A.S said...

Hi Jfook,
yup jagung is another famous fruit in UPM that we can easily get for free. hehehe.

Roz Razalli said...

wah... u left me drooling!

Anonymous said...

apa barang jagungg.. cempedak laaa

D.N.A.S said...

kat UPM beeesssstttt!!!

cempedak? Kat area mana pulak? Isy, tak puas hati ni..... apasal aku tak penah pegi curi cempedak dulu, ye?

Anonymous said...

Makan rambutan paling best. Terus petik kat pokok pastu makan. UPM terbaik!

D.N.A.S said...

I totally forgot about rambutan! Yes, memang terbaik!

dillazag said...

way to use the Secret. hihihihihi
bestnya makan dorian....
teringin lah pullok!

Anonymous said...

we used to sell upmpunyacempedak to pudu cempedakgoreng guy.... dpt 80hengget, suke hatiiii