Saturday 13th March, 2010
My husband has acknowledged since the first time we set foot at the office of Andalusia Travel and Tours that short courses conducted for the pilgrims-to-be every weekend would be packed with many kinds of people from all walks of life who want to listen to the talk by Ustaz Haji Daud Che Ngah on the essential preparations before departing for umrah. We were advised to attend the course at least three weeks before departure, and our turn has come this week, so we decided to be there as early as possible to secure our seats. We thought that the office will only open at 9.00am, the usual business hour. Unfortunately we were wrong. People have been waiting since 7.00am in the morning and by the time we reached the place at 8.15am it was already jam-packed. Three floors were provided for the pilgrims-to-be during the course, two floors for men and another one for women. Anyway, men occupied only one floor, on the contrary, it was the women who conquered the other two floors. The speaker noticed this too, and nonchalantly uttered that it's the sign that the world is heading to an end soon (tanda-tanda qiamat). Na'uzubillah...
The course started at 9.00am but soon after the session was interrupted with technical faulty of the sound system at the men's floor. They can only see the speaker through the screen installed on the wall, but can't hear what he was saying. Staff of Andalusia have been very helpful. They worked hard to solve the problem, climbing up and down the stairs, running between the power room at the ground floor and the course room at the third floor. After about half an hour, men participants were seen leaving the building with disappointed faces. One of them was grumbling, saying that he travelled all the way from far north to attend the course.
Bersabarlah wahai jemaah sekalian. Ini baru sekecil-kecil dugaan Allah turunkan untuk menguji keimanan kita. Belum lagi bertolak ke Madinah dan Mekah yang lebih banyak lagi dugaan dan cabarannya yang bakal kita tempuhi. Beristighfar banyak-banyak dan berdoalah semoga Allah membantu kita. Insya-Allah, berkat kesabaran dan sifat bertolak-ansur serta merendah diri itu pasti akan ada balasannya yang manis dari Allah.
Despite the minor hiccup, the speaker has managed to complete his talk by 1.00 pm. We've learned a lot of new things about hajj and umrah and became so eager to be there soon. My husband and I look forward for the journey to purify our heart and soul, to be able to cleanse ourselves from the sins we commited.
May Allah bless our journey. Amin.