Di Bawoh Rang Ikang Kering
Random Ramblings of A Retired Retainer


Monday, March 21, 2005
Today, Monday 21st March is the Spring Equinox for people in countries with 4 seasons. For us, in a country with only 2 seasons (hot and hotter), the sun will be directly on the equator and it is predicted that it will be a very hot day. Terengganu people will call the day panah derring.

In Terengganuspeak, the heat is described in many ways. Panah derring is for hot and bright sunny days when you can fry an egg on the asphalt. It is also a good day to get sunstrokes if you are not careful. Surprisingly, there is no Terengganu word for sunstroke. There are words for the consequences though such as pitang and gelap mate.

The heat on muggy, sweat-filled humid days would be called panah sok oh. You get uncomfortable and you get belengah (sticky). This is the time, when you can, you want to take off your shirt and wait for the slightest breeze to come. Modern day air-conditioning and electric fans help of course.

On either days, it is not advisable to be on the beach barefooted. I know it is nice to be barefooted on the beach and feel the sands between your toes. Do it on cooler days. Otherwise, you will shout out that the sand is panah ketik-ketik - biting hot. Panah ketik-ketik is used to describe hot things that come into contact with your body like hot berangan (chestnuts) or minja (malinjau) just off the sand-filled wok.

That's about all the temperature words I can think of in this heat. Metaphorically there are words that use panah. There is panah punggong. No, it does not mean that you have a hot backside like J Lo's. It means that you are restless and cannot stay put in one place. This kind of behaviour might make someone close to you angry or panah hati. Panah hati is not heartburn. It is the Terengganu equivalent of the northern hangat hati. Of course, when you are angry enough, the heat will start a simultaneous combustion - a condition the Trengganu people call tebako ( to burn). This is exactly what happened to an elephant.

It was a hot day in the jungle and all the animals were fanning themselves trying very hard to keep cool. Suddenly they heard a roar. It was the tiger, collaring everyone and demanding to know "Who is the King of the Jungle". The small monkey got it first. The tiger roared the question in his face "Who is the King of the Jungle?" and the monkey answered between chattering teeth "You..you..sirrr!". The tiger released the monkey's throat and moved on to the next animal -a nervous tapir. Same question, same answer. The tiger roared on.
A very hot elephant at the end of the line muttered under his breath, "The idiot better not come to me. It is too hot for that kind of nonsense". But eventually the tiger came to the elephant anyway and barked the question: "Who is the King of the Jungle?"
The elephant lost his cool. He grabbed his trunk around the tiger and tossed the tiger high in the air. When the tiger came crashing down, the elephant stomped his massive foot on the tiger. Then he tossed the tiger up again. The tiger landed on his feet this time, avoided the elephant's foot, brushed himself up and looked at the elephant in the eyes.
"I say man. Just because you do not know the answer, don't get so angry lah".