One day when we were in Dewsbury Mosque, we were called by Hafiz Patel to his room. There were many others, and they were from Wales. We were offered some dates and zam-zam water. Then he gave a short talk asking us to intensify daawah throughout Wales. One that day I was fully motivated.
Talking about Dewsbury mosque, there were two very interesting things. First, the main prayer hall on the upper floor was vast and with pillars only on the perimeters. I think, the architect had done wonders. Second, the chapati and curry were really delicious.
Final Exams and Thesis
The hectic life full of challenges was weathered through with full of hope. Towards the end of our stay in Swansea, Hana’s health didn’t fully recover. With frequent loss of blood, she was weak but was nevertheless high in spirit to participate in various events including the weekly halaqah that she joined.
When it was close to examination period, Hana was once again admitted in Singleton Hospital. I can vividly recalled some of those nostalgic moments, having to stop by the hospital to visit her and delivered food and clothing, before proceeding to the university for my final examination. It was both hectic and difficult, but those moments were really meaningful.
When the examinations results were announced, I was congratulated by Tony Knights. I remembered him saying “Well Arshad, after all, you did very well”. He knew about my predicament.
Offer from the Department
The final examination was in June. After the results were announced, I was called by the postgraduate committee, interviewed and congratulated. Due to the examination results and the progress that I had made for my research project, I was offered to convert the registration into PhD. If I chose to do so, the registration was to be backdated and I was to extend the scope of my research to suit PhD requirement. I was excited and wrote to the department, back in Kuala Lumpur. I received the answer from the M. Rashid who was then head of department. After congratulating our success (both me and Bard were offered), he then said “Walau bagaimanapun, perkhidmatan saudara berdua diperlukan. Oleh itu saudara dikehendaki melaporkan diri selepas menamatkan pengajian di peringkat sarjana.” We laughed at the news.
September 1988- Flying Home
I told Meirion that my study leave was to expire in November and by then, I was supposed to report for duty in Kuala Lumpur. Nevertheless, since my wife was quite far into pregnancy, I need to get home sooner so that she can still be allowed to travel. We took the doctor’s advice and worked hard to complete my thesis. Finally, in September it was ready and few days later, we flew home. So, I completed my masters in about 10 months.
AU4 – Hulu Kelang
We moved to a terrace house in Jalan AU4/7 near the surau. The house was great because I can walk to the mosque for daily prayers and the community was friendly. There were many interesting stories to share but, I’ll mention only one. There was a man who went around Hulu Klang selling bread on his motorcycle. I think his name was Zakri. One day I overheard him speaking to his friend, “Tak apa, kalau kita kalah pun dalam pilihanraya, kita buat negara Islam di AU4”. Wow, what a highly spirited person. That was a true worker and follower – never give up to carry out the tasks given, regardless of the outcome. He was working for PAS in that general election.
In the afternoon of 9th November of 1988 Anas was born. He was delivered by Dr. Zarina Bibi in Poliklinik Wanita Taman Melawati. Faisal was then only fifteen months old. Hana’s parent came from Taiping and stayed with us for about a month.