Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Tale of an Anak Mami

I am an anak mami. 100%. The look, the colour , the all that it takes to claim this title ! You are an anak mami if one or both parents have mamak/indian bloodline and in my case, its in every generation way back to my great great great great grandparents , and without planning I married  half a mamak! My late father in law was pure mamak but mom in law is melayu jati. So my children are well, double dosage darah mamak .. but my eldest is not so mami looking , (she takes a bit of the melayu look) lots of people mistakes her for a chindian .. but aahh my second one is, like me, has 100% anak mami branding and my son, I guess orang tenguk boleh taulah dia ni keturunan mamak A more glamour term to anak mami is peranakan penang.

When you are an anak mami,  you are often blessed with one, two, three or if you are trully blessed, all of the following :-
a) nice skin tan colouring (anything from fair to teh susu, kopi susu, cair or pekat ) but of course in some cases, like me, terlebih colouring sikit lol
b) nice big eyes
c) long curly  eyelashes
d) hidung mancung
e) nice white even teeth 
f) thick black hair
g) good height - there's more but these are the most relevant ones :)

(and I just realised that MY son actually has almost all of the above traits! .. just have to get rid of his adolescence pimples) .. kalau zaman dulu2 boleh main booking2 buat menantu kan?  

People often give me this look when I tell them I am from Port Klang .. and I see the  angkat of the kening or or kerut of the dahi .. and the next obvious question or remark "oh ingat dari Penang" to which I will always acquiesce  with them that well yeah ada "darah orang Penang" and the smile that follows the next remark "tu lah dah agak mesti anak mami", come to think of it I should just tell people I am from Penang, anak mami tanjung, to make things easy.

But more often than not, people always think that I am indian too, much to the pleasures of my indian friends, cos then I am in "their group" ha ha ..and very very rare few times as a Eurasian.  I dont really mind and I cant blame people for thinking I am indian, the colouring is right hehehe .. if only I can speak Tamil/Hindi I am sure lagilah orang confuse!

I can automatically switch to speak the lingo when surrounded by my relatives from Penang, though the accent is not as good as theirs, I can still wiggle  my way in ! Its hingar bingar bila a room of orang penang bersembang .. and the foreign words to some ears :-

awat, habaq, mai lah sat, lampu lip lap, panaih, merlap merlip, kakarus , melilau, panchok, kanjiprak, cheq, depa, la nie , toksah, lagu mana , lagu nie, (not referring to a song ok) loklak, putaq beliaq, cemey, and many interesting more ...... do you even know what a KANJIPRAK or PANCHOK is??? and the intonation of the sentences .. its really quite unique! When a person who has the looks speaks and refers to her/himself as "chek" chances are they are still living in Penang!

I havent been back to my late grandma's kampong for a long time now, maybe I should take my kids to see their roots eh? she stayed in Kampong Dodol (more known as kg dodoi) and those days rumah bertiang, and some of her neighbours buried their family right under the house .. I remember being freaked out walking pass by these houses yang ada kubur, always imagining a ghost would jump out anytime to scare me! malam-malam sorilah nak keluar, thank god the bathroom is in the house!

Mak Long, Pak Long titles are replaced with Mamu or Mami, then you have the Mak Kecik and Mak Besak haha .. Nani/Dadi and Nana/Dada is nenek and datuk, Nana can also be for elder brother or male relative, or your panggilan sayang for your husband .. Imagine me saying this to my husband "oklah Nana, pi keja beik beik , nanti balik cheq masak kari ikan tau .." LOL LOL .. 

My nieces and nephews should be calling me Mami but dah moden sikit so I am aunty chik  (chik is my housename and only family members call me by this), or aunty june or AJ (the most glamour version lol) .. kids of my nieces and nephews are calling me by the tanjung style "Nani" and my  own grandkids are gonna call me the real mami version DADIMA! I really like the way it sounds, reminds me of the movie Bobby (remember  the ooh then so handsome rishi kapoor and dimple kapadia??) she calls her gran dadima .. I doubt my husband wants to be called DADA OR NANA OR DADAPA  lol .. i guess its plain TOK Z  for him! 

Being an anak mami is like a different race totally, I remembered once I went for a job interview and under race I ticked "lain-lain and wrote down anak mami as the explanation" LOL I didnt get the job and neither did they ask me to elaborate about it during the interview, tak inquisitive langsung! Or when in conversations and I would go  "tu lah orang melayu, memang macam tu" and my malay friends would turn to me and say, "eh you pun melayu tau" and I would go "I mamaklah tak sama" hehehe I am sure many of my malay friends are really really really bengang with me .. bukan tak suka melayu, but nak buat macam mana dah bukan melayu .. in the old days we were often referred to as having "darah keturunan keling, DKK" which actually could really offend some of the DKKs when said to their face and I wonder why, kan dah betul?

Specialty of being an anak mami? You must know how to masak kari ikan .. mamak style .. bila makan bau kari lekat kat jari ! Not to brag, but I dish out really mean fish curry!! and I will make sure my daughters will get their curry right!


Cieri said...

Ibu did warned us when we were in primary school to never told any of our friends that we got mamak blood.
not anymore. I am proud to be kelantan-bred-japan-educated-half-anak-mami-3/8-malay-and-1/8-siamese girl. lalala~

I need to learn to cook kari ikan mamak style la. nenek`s (why `nenek` not `dadi/nani`?) kari is the best! bau mesti lekat kat tangan baru sedap!
(alamak, salivating la pulak thinking of kari ikan mamak style)

June Malik said...

cieri , glad u r proud of ur mamak blood :)

Hannah said...

Lol. I envy ur true mamak bloodline (though my arwah 'yayi' *grandfather* is jawa keturunan India(muke mcm Jalalludin Hassan) so yeah, my gramps cook sume mamak style food under her roof!)He doesn't like Malay-style cooking and honestly, curry isn't curry kalau bau tk melekat kat jari.

Being 50% Jawa from Mum's side, darah Bugis, Siam and Melayu on Dad's side pun agak kencang jgk!

Dadima! How quaint. LOVE it! Can't wait for THAT time to come. Hahah.

p.s: nk rse kari ikan ibu blh? ;p

June Malik said...

Hannah, orang yang banyak mixture of blood is always the unique ones hehe .. and yes we shall arrange for a curry tasting day :)