Monday, April 25, 2011

Emails and strangers.

A few months back, i got an email from a total stranger. Instead of discarding it into the trash can (like i usually do), i decided to read it and write a VERY VERY LONG, LENGTHY, BORING reply. Months passed and I never heard from the person again.

That was, until a couple of days ago.

Anyway, I'm not in the mood of writing long-winded entries today, so i've copy-pasted those emails for your reading pleasure. You don't have to read my part of the exchange tho (like i said earlier, it's lengthy and without much substance).

I'm not kidding, don't read it!


To: Izyan Ramdan
Sent: Friday
Subject: Salam from Egypt


Am truly very sorry for my late reply. It's been about 6 months since your e-mail and I never really got the chance to thank you properly for your words of advice. Alhamdulillah, I am now studying medicine in Egypt at Ain Syams University in Cairo. So far, I'm able to understand what I'm actually studying but must be because I've not gotten to the hard part yet?? Hehe.

Salam ukhwah..


P/S: I happened to stumble upon the website salam from perantauan so yeah, just decided to ask any of the MARA scholars..which happens to be lucky you! =3 BTW, is your ym id the same as your e-mail?

--- On Friday, Izyan Ramdan wrote:
From: Izyan Ramdan
Subject: Re: Advice please? Am a Malaysian student
Date: Friday, 1:59 PM

Assalamualaikum wbt Stranger,

I have to admit, i was a bit surprised to receive your email. Reading through, I believe i can understand the predicament you are in, although i have never been in such situation myself. Anyway, i will try to answer as best as i can.

I don't want to be biased in my answer but honestly, MARA and Ireland are the only scholarship and medical school respectively that i am truly familiar with. Therefore, I can't compare MARA to YP nor Ireland to Egypt for the simple reason that i have never had the pleasure of testing said waters.

However, i can assure you that MARA indeed offers quite a 'healthy' lump for us students in Ireland. And the nice thing about MARA is that unlike some other scholarships, they make an effort to show that they care. [my brother was on JPA scholarship, and boy! they were quite a pain to deal with, from what i heard]. But again, this is only a vague and amateurish observation from me, and i should stress that i have not the slightest idea of YP's pros and cons. For all i know, it's way better than MARA.

Now, the issue of placement, Egypt or Europe?? Well, as i mentioned before, I have only ever studied medicine in Ireland. It's a pretty decent university (the one i go to) but not at all the best. (I believe my uni was ranked 700++ in the recent world university ranking. Yeah, lousy huh?) I personally think that when doing medicine, whichever uni regardless, what really matters is that you end up graduating and becoming a good doctor. This, i think requires more out of YOU than the university you go to. If you are determined enough, i'm pretty sure u'll end up being the best doc ever, even if you graduated from some unknown and unclassy uni in Sri Lanka (totally random).

Anyway, I really hope you get what i'm trying to say here - that it doesn't really matter where you study medicine. Generally it's bound to be the same, with some minor differences here and there. Nothing too major. So where you choose to get your education would more likely depend on what u're seeking. You mentioned something about learning Arabic and The Qur'an. That's very nice to know. I hate to admit this, but my sole motive for choosing Europe was merely to travel to all those european countries (and see with my own eyes what real snow looks like). I didn’t come here seeking for Islam but Alhamdulillah that is what I found along the way.

So, even if you do choose Europe, or UK , they have a fine Islamic base here. In fact, I've learned more about Islam than i probably would have in Malaysia. In essence, when you say obtaining ilmu dunia and akhirat - it can be achieved anywhere on God's land! What really matters is you. Seek and InsyaAllah you will find. Even if you're not in an arabic-speaking country - that doesn't necessarily mean you can't learn arabic or you can't memorize the whole Qur'an. [Tho obviously it would be much simpler picking up the language in Egypt than it would be in Ireland =)]

Anyway, i can say all these things to you and babble on forever but ultimately Allah knows best. Ask Him, and hopefully you'll know in your heart what to do. InsyaAllah, He will guide you whatever and wherever you choose to be.

All the best.

Izyan Ramdan
NUI Galway, Ireland .

p/s: How did you happen to stumble upon my email?

Hahahah.... I warned ya, but you didn't listen...

Gosh, i can't believe i wrote all that crap... berlagak as if i was some kind of know-it-all pulak, padahal sendiri pon struggling. Adeh~.

Ahhhh, but then again... i made a new (and hopefully normal) friend, so i believe it was worth pretending to be smarty-pants after all. (eventhough, my good-natured advice was effective overlooked~)

And now, my faith in random strangers has been restored. (not everyone you meet on the Internet are total creeps, huh?

Saturday, April 23, 2011


They make justifiably incorrect speculations about where my heart lies - Some say it's somewhere across the ocean, probably under the deep blue sea? Or maybe it's among stars, between planets and solar flares? Others say i have no heart at all, which is a fair enough observation given my personality. 

But they're wrong, of course. 

I do have a heart. And it's beating as strong as ever. It's location though is a secret i'm not yet ready to divulge to the public. Hehe, i love secrets =)

p/s: I got a kid with dextrocardia (heart in the right chest instead of the normal left) for my Paediatrics exam last year. I probe and prod the kid seeming to go through the motion of examining him, and then confidently reported to the examiner that i could feel normal heartbeat on the left chest (where there was none). Bazinga!~~

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

ヽ( ̄д ̄;)ノ=3=3=3 "panic panic!"

Exam's tomorrow. Panic.... Panic attack.
And then, A text from Abah:


Aslmlkm dearest Putri,
We wud like to put it on record that you hv done extremely well over the last 18 years from lower primary school up to ur Medical School that whatever happens in this last leg, we are superblously proud of you.
So, just go out there and do it and worry not about anything.
Go do ur last medical school act like they do in Holywoods!
Enjoy it dear. Love u.
We pray for ur success too. May God bless.


Awww~ How can i not feel extremely loved with a text like this? And he spelled "hollywood" wrong. cute. Hahaha. That's my Abah!

Not panicking anymore。。。

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Self affirmation ritual

Warning: This is a ego-massaging post.

I was talking to Simon a couple of mornings ago, and somehow we ended up talking about Mr Lang. Simon was saying how this particular surgeon had bludgeoned people to death in the ENT viva (oral) exams last year. 

"Oh," i commented. "He was my examiner in the exam and i thought he wasn't all that bad. In fact, i thought he was pretty cool."

Simon didn't look impress. "Well, he failed a lot of people last year. And he didn't follow any format to the exams, just sort of went his own way with it. And he gave inappropriate comments like 'are u sure u're a medical student?' or 'you should quit med school' etc etc."

'Hmmmm..... But i passed easily enough, and to think English isn't even my first language," I almost said but didn't. I mean, no one likes a gloat! And with that, the conversation drifted into a different topic, like conversations normally do.

Anyway, now that i think about it, I suppose it's easy to downplay the difficulties of things from the past - all those horrible exams you've gone through and managed to come out of alive.

UPSR? Didn't bat an eyelid.
SPM? piece of cake.
International Baccalaureate? No big deal.
First to fourth Med? Easiest exams in the world.

But the truth is this --> 

Now to be honest, 4th year wasn't exactly a good academic year for me. My results weren't exactly bad, but they're nothing to brag about. And so, i never bragged about it (even to my siblings - which was unusual!!). And because i was disappointed with my overall performance i never really paid attention to what i got. I just sort of glanced at my results, noted that i didn't fail any subject and put it at the back of my head, never to be looked at again.

But after that little conversation with Simon, i became curious. What exactly did i get again? I can't remember. So i rummaged through my pile of important letters looking for last year's exam slip and found my answer. Hahaha, i actually got honors for ENT! HONORS baby!! How in the world could i not have celebrated that little victory? Oh well, even though it's a year too late now, but i'm still gonna give myself a good hard congratulatory pat on the back. *pat pat pat*

Izzy to self: "You're awesome, Girl! I wish i were you. Wait a sec, i am you!"


-izzy in crazy mode-
Countdown to finals: 2 days.

p/s: okay, now that my massive ego is properly massaged, i'm ready for my finals!! come what may!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Final Battle

I found this entry in my huge collection of drafts.
(Dated 13/04/2009)

Around this time in 2011, it will be me in that hot seat. It will be me with that stricken deer-caught-in-headlights look on my face. Fuhh, i'm getting cold sweat just thinking about it.~

Hopefully by that point in time, i'll have everything snugly placed up in there (yes, i am referring to my brain). And hopefully, i'd fly with rainbow colors. Hopefully. InsyaAllah.
I never really finished writing this particular post, hence why it was rotting for so long in my draft collection. But it seemed appropriate to post it now considering how I'm actually just 1 week away from sitting that exact exam.

Am i ready for this?
- Heck no.

Am i worried?
- Hell yeah!

Have i developed that cute but very pitiful deer-caught-in-headlights look?
-You be the judge!


Tuesday, April 5, 2011


"What is this life full of care, if we do not have time to stand and stare?"
-W H Davis-

When things don't seem to moving the way i want it, all i need to do is stop, take a deep breath in and count all my blessings. And then I remind myself that there's a silver lining somewhere; that Allah has big plans for me, (plans which may not necessarily be what i imagine them to be but amazing nonetheless). And i feel comforted with just this little thought alone.

Ahhh~ I love how easily my faith sustains me :)