20 October 2009

Brickendonbury gave me a glimpse of the past

It was the summer of 2006. I was on a two months attachment to our sister office at the fish-and-chips-land. Blogging was so alien to me at that time so instead of blog-hoping into someones virtual territory and have a peek and taste of their secret life, I spent most of the weekend gatecrashing religiously into many craft and antique fairs around Brickendonbury, hunting for rare and hard-to-find national treasures (Brickendonbury is a small village set in a beautiful Hertfortshire countryside, 20 miles north of London)

In one of those occasions, while going through some of the bric-a-brac and other memorabilia on displayed, my eyes caught this beautiful piece of first day cover. A stamped envelope with a very familiar and distinctive insignia on it. It was a household logo, printed clearly on its front page flanked by three beautiful and colorful stamps. I was so excited as that was the first time I came across a mint condition, well kept first day cover specially made to commemorate 50 years of RRIM (The Rubber Research Institute of Malaysia - now known as The Malaysian Rubber Board). The envelope dated in 1975. I bought it straight away without even bargaining.

Over the years I have collected many interesting first day cover, but this one is really special and a bit nostalgic to me. I started my first working career 18 years ago in this prestigious research institute which single-handedly for umpteen decades unraveled the mystery and wonder of rubber. It was until few years back (1998 to be more precise) somebody in the board room probably felt a bit bored with the name and fancy a new name and changed it into the current incorporated board consisted of a cocktail of many agencies and finally become like a rojak. Rojak however if mixed with a proper sambal dressing or sauce can be a good past time delicacy.

Inside the envelope I found a nicely folded bilingual note (Bahasa and English) elaborating in detail on the design and the three stamps. The note also highlighted RRIM's many glorious achievements and significant contributions toward the nation in the past. Somehow it made me feel very proud. I will keep this memento as my personal treasure.

The Golden and and Platinum Jubilee has passed and long gone for this only custodian of the rubber industry in Malaysia . It will take another 16 more years for the institute to reach and celebrate its Diamond Jubilee (the 100th year). I will be 57 and just celebrated my Golden year by that time. I am hoping my playing ground will still be strong to withstand all the rapid changes that taking place internally and externally. I am also hoping to be around on the auspicious day and be part of our national history too.


Fly said...

salam ziarah doc dipagi hari :)

Zue said...

Yes, hari ni I berkesempatan menjengok blog u pada awal pagi.

NanaDJ said...

Dr Sam,
Our people have no sense of history, remember they wanted to change that Centre into a Sports Training Centre - I am so glad that plan was aborted. I have never been there but I know that Malaysians in London often held celebrations like Hari Kebangsaan, Hari Raya, Family Day there. I am sure the place is just as beautiful and tranquil as the RRI place in Sg Buloh (you live there? - how enviable - I love the place!)
That First Day cover must be worth a lot now. Don't ever part with it.

uncledon said...

Hi Doc..i do collect stamps..
err nk tanya, brp rege sampul surat pertama tu?..

ps: i wish i could have it.. :)

besi said...

tempat nie yg nak buat pusat sukan
bertaraf tinggikan...
camne projek nie? dah cancel ke?

Hidup KOKA said...

RRI Jalan Ampang used to be the landmark where I can wait for my friend to fetch me back in early 80's

Naddy said...

it must have felt really nice to find a local gem miles away from where it came from.

DrSam said...

He..he.. jadi burung hantu :)

Agaknya dah lega lah sikit kerja tu ye.

Luckily the place remain as it is for the time being. Unspoiled. But for how long we wouldn't know.

I am just hoping the Sg. Buloh's will remain untouched as well. As that is the only green area left in that vicinity.

I am not sure the current value of the first day cover as I don't intend to part with it. Will keep it and pass it to my kids.

Good doc. It seems that we have the same hobby. I have some interesting stamps too. Sg. Ujongs' are my most precious.

Masa tu harga dia dalam 1.50 pound je. Kat negeri orang tak le mahal sangat. Kalau kat negeri kita ni tak tahu le...semua cekik darah.

Betul tu. Hampir-hampir 'ternoda' kesucian tempat tu. Buat masa ni senyap lah. Aman!

hidup KOKA,
Ada juga yang nostalgia kat situ rupanya :)

Yes. There are many more relics, collectibles items and some of our historical interest hidden somewhere in the far lands waiting to be discovered. I am very happy I found some of them (rare stamps, coins, currencies etc)

ASH said...

All of sudden, I feel like to sing the song " MEMORY "....
ha ha ha
but unfortunately I feel SO VETERAN....


ckLah @xiiinam said...

Dah 18 tahun kerja...
Saya pun dah 18 tahun dipanggil cikgu.....di sekolah yang satu...cikgu paling 'lama' kat sek ni..

Fadhil said...

Salam Doc,

I do hope Brickendonbury and indeed RRI Sungai Buloh, remain as it is. I've been to the Sungai Buloh place once, and it was like traveling back in time. The place is so tranquil.

But the surrounding area is developing too fast. Before long, we'll have some smart politician thinking of taking over the place. Should not let it happen.

Ida BorneoLove said...

counting the future years make me feel old already :/

laki cikgu kimia said...

memanglah memori daun pisang kan doc?

Puan Ninie said...

ninie also want to be a part of national history too doc..:)

adiwarnatasya said...

Salam doc...
Suka baca entry2 duk:)

DrSam said...

veterans always sing a better song. cherish our life.

Bagus tu. Setia pada yang satu.

Salam. Controlled and well-planned development is still acceptable and some time is good, but when greed come into the equation, then everything will be things in the past. I hope people with the powers that be should be very smart enough and has some intelligent not be corrupted by one the seven deadly sins.

Ida Athanazir,
Old is sometimes more valuable than the new thing (antiques are priceless for example).

laki cikgu kimia,
memori daun pisang tu zaman Jepun tu.

No worry. Your time will come.

Salam and thank you. Menulis dan berkongsi pengalaman yang tidak seberapa. Itu pun jika ada kelapangan dan ada keafiatan.

daros kuneng said...

salam kembara doc..

memori begins when the herritage was neglected..

betol ke apa yg i tulis ni..


DrSam said...

Salam ukhuwah. Betul juga ungkapan tersebut. Biasanya memori indah mula merayau-rayau mengimbau kenangan yang telah lalu.

Faisal Admar said...

eh doc, the stamps that got stamp on it has no value right? :)

Zendra-Maria said...

Doc, do you keep in touch with the people at Brickendonbury? Just wondering whether my friend Dr Roseminah, wife of Dr Ellias, is still there.

Adliff said...


Sebagai anak Felda yang dibesarkan dengan hasilan getah dan sawit, entri menyentuh rasa.

Dulu getah, bapaku masa muda terpaksa memproses sendiri jadi getah keping. Beberapa tahun dulu, bapaku cuma perlu hantar getah beku dan cair ke PMG.

Dulu sawit, perlu dikahwin bunga. Tapi usaha saintis Inggeris (sudah lupa nama)kini sawit kumbang yang kahwin bungakan! :)

DrSam said...

faisal Admar,
It depends actually. I noticed the first covers normally will be stamped on their first day or circulation. I think their (stamps) value is just like the numismatic item as well, the condition (mint or uncirculated), rarest, uniqueness, age etc. will determine their value. Even the wrongly printed item will fetch a good price.

Great Kanda. Your vast networking reached my other playground as well. Yes I am constantly keeping in touch with my kakis over there. I know Dr. Elias Awang and his wife personally. Dr. Elias is a very nice guy. He can sing and play guitar very well too:) He is still there attached to the TARRC until his retirement (they retire at 65).

aliff muhammad,
Kawasan penananam getah semakin mengecil kerana pekebun kecil yang rata-rata terdiri dari pekebun veteran (statistik umur sekitar 50an keatas) tidak lagi mempunyai pelapis. Waris lebih suka berhijrah kekota atau bekerja dipejabat. Tanah ditukarguna atau dijual. Banyak insentif kerajaan namun masih tidak menarik minat generasi baru. Saya pun agak sedih juga. Cuma baru-baru ini apabila harga getah naik sedikit baru nampak sedikit minat (termasuk dari anak muda).

I am always excited and looking forward whenever there is any chance for a field trip or visit to the smallholders. Kampung's life and their folks have always enticed me.

Naddy said...

maybe you ought to do some more story in them, i like to read more of these ole relics. My late paternal grandparents were greatly influenced by the British and I even have a British uncle whom died years ago. Unfortunately I never had a chance to meet him.

abu muaz said...

Salam. Agak lama tak berkunjung ke sini. Maaf

you are not worth it to fight for.... said...

Please visit http://youarenotmylexapro.blogspot.com/

umie@kakyong said...

Salam DrSam,
Maaf..Lama umie tak dtg sini...
Mengimbau kenangan lama adalah terlalu indah, sebab kita tak akan lalui sekali lagi... ianya tetap segar dlm ingatan.
harap Dr sekeluarga dlm kesejahteraan...

DrSam said...

You seems to have a very interesting story as well. Insyaallah, I will write more on these stories in the future.

abu muaz,
salam. lama tak dengar cerita.

you are not worth it to fight for,
Thanks for the visit and link.

Salam umie. Ada masa dan kelapangan kita jenguk blog kawan-kawan. Kenangan lama terutama yang manis memang sukar dilupakan.

Semoga Umie sekeluarga berada didalam kesejahteraan jua.

PerantauSepi1306 said...

nostalgia jap ye dr... jauh betul setem tu merantau... jeles kat setem boleh ;p

sonali said...

Hi this is pradeep.i read your posts they were really cool.
kindly visit my site and give me a link back,i've already added your link in my blog

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...