Di Bawoh Rang Ikang Kering
Random Ramblings of A Retired Retainer


Friday, November 25, 2005
The monsoon has arrived in Terengganu in time for the heavily publicized Monsoon Cup. I remember being cold and sometimes miserable during Museng Boh as we called the monsoon season. During Museng Boh, diets change. A favourite food to cheer up cold and miserable boys would be ubi kayu rebuh cicoh nyo (boiled tapioca with grated coconut.) Thus it was a pleasant surprise for me to discover this plebeian offering on Aseana's menu. I haven't had ubi kayu (boiled or roasted) for a long time so I ordered one.
The best part of ubi kayu (boiled) to me is the endmost part which is the slimmest. I hope they served me that.
While waiting for it, I thought of the pantang larang (taboos) that goes with eating ubi kayu (boiled or roasted). I was told that I shouldn't take any medicine like Aspro (the forerunner of Panadol and Paracatemol) before or after eating ubi kayu. I could not think of any scientific facts for this taboo but I heeded it anyway. I guessed there were ubat (medicines) that reacted strangely to some type of food. Medical doctors out there, please enlighten us.
Talking about doctors made me think of the word ubat in Terengganuspeak. Ubat does not necessarily means medicine/cure/panacea all the time for in Terengganuspeak there is
ubat lapu
ubat nyamok
ubat cacing
ubat kuat
ubat gegat

Ubat lapu (lampu) is not a medicine to cure lamps. They are batteries for lapu pecet (torchlight). Of course ubat nyamok is not designed to cure mosquitoes but rather to kill them. Ditto for ubat cacing and ubat gegat. As for ubat kuat, I will leave it to Derumo to elaborate.

When my ubi kayu rebus came, I still felt miserable. It looked more like mashed potato. At RM7.50 per plate, it was a "regret dish" and I left it after a mouthful. Lucky Farris came and he tried his best to finish it. I guessed ubi rebus is not very common in Alor Setar and Farris for once let a dish go to waste. So the ubi rebuh failed to buat ubat for my longing for the Terengganu monsoon.