Although we both joined the same organization Felda after leaving the then College of Agriculture Malaya (now Universty Putra Malaysia) in 1972, our path has never crossed and thus we have never met.
Hanafi was not only a classmate in Serdang but he was also a groupmate. In Serdang term this is a group of ten person who will form the smallest unit for each year from a total of approximately 180 students. The formation was done by the College authority, Every activity will revolve around this unit for tutorials, sharefarm and many other activities within and without the college. It was a closely knit unit randomly chosen irrespective of race, sex, religion and state where we came from. A member of this group are like brothers and sisters. Even outings for satay Kajang in Kajang are made together after every disbursement of scholarship money by the College.
It was after some members namely Aziz Abu Hassan, Dato' Khalid Hassan and several others were planning a get together in August and another one in October 2010 that we started looking for all the members. Thanks to Facebook, things were made easier for us all to locate each other.
The biggest surprise came on 28th July 2010 when we were chatting on facebook and we enquired about each other's location. He dropped the bomb and told me that he had settled down in Kubang Kerian, Kota Bharu, kelantan since 2008, almost 3 years ago without any of our other classmates knowing it. Being a Selangorian, I thoght he must have settled down in Selangor at the very least. Who would have thought of him settling in Kelantan?
Since we are quite near with me staying just a across the Kelantan River, a meeting was in order and he agreed to come over to Pasir Mas at 3.00 PM.
He was supposed to come via the Tendong bridge to pick me up at my house before we proceed to an eatery famous for its Mee Udang. He came via the Jambatan Salor instead after missing the turn to the Jambatan Tendon which often happens to people not familiar with the area. If you were to follow the road sign to Pasir Mas, it will lead you to pasir Mas via the Salor Bridge.
He made a stop and called me for direction. Since the place where he stopped was close to the mee udang eatery, I told him to just stay there and give me time to meet him there.
It was impossible to talk much at the eatery as the place is located to close to the busy road. We finished our delicios plate of mee udang and proceeded to my house in Mekasar a distance of about 6 km on the other side of town.
We reminisced about old times especially about those times we were employed by Felda.
The best topic was about our classmates especially the group mates during our first year in Serdang. We recalled the other members of the group comprising of the only rose in the group Rokiah Yusoff from Terengganu, Mohd Hamzan Din from Negeri Sembilan, Taharin Shafie , Aziz Muhamad from Pahang, Sabundok Linggo from Sabah, Adzaudin bin Salleh from Kedah, Zainuddin Shamsuddin from Penang, Ali Abu Bakar and of course himself Hanafi Kasbi and myself Mohamad Zawawi Ahmad.
I related to him on how I met Sabundok Linggo in Bukit Bintang KL and after telling him who I was, we parted as complete strangers as he couldn't recall much of our time together in Serdang way back in 1969.
As to Hanafi he remarried a Kelantanese since the demise of his wife some ten years ago due to breast cancer, an incurable disease that has been inflicting the female gender. I guess Kelantan will be his home and he will settle here for good. It is normal for non Kelantanese to SKMK, Sampai Kelantan Mesti Kawin and Saya Kahwin Mek Kelantan. In Hanafi's case he married the Mek Kelantan while they were based in Kuantan where they met.