Posted in General

We’ve moved to Japan

I mentioned about moving some time ago. Now, my family (except for my eldest who’s at a university in Melaka) has moved to Tokyo. We took the 11.30 pm flight on Saturday and touched down at Narita Airport around 7.45 am on Sunday the 26th of July.

Since then, we had been to Roppongi by train and then walked back to our temporary apartment. We decided to walk because we thought it was near and less than one km, but actually it turned out to be more than 2.5 km walk in the summer heat. The kids were exhausted.

Then on Tuesday we went for two school visits. In the morning we took a taxi to Shibuya because the appointment was at 9 and we didn’t want to be late. The school was located inside a university. It was a women’s university. Even though originally both my kids were on the waiting list, at the meeting the admission officer said there is a space available for my son Ar but Mel is still on the waiting list. However, the school is still waiting for the confidential report from my kids’ former school. The meeting and the tour ended after one hour. We came back to have lunch and perform Zohor prayer.

Then around 12.30 in afternoon we took a long train ride to Funabori to visit another international school. We had to change train twice, from Ginza line to Hanzomon and then to Shinjuku line.When we arrived at Funabori station, it took us another 10 minutes’ walk to the school. We met with the principal/head teacher of the elementary and secondary schools.  We got a lot of information, but still need to think about the school due to the distance. We arrived back at the apartment around 4 pm.

Then, I went to get a sim card for my phone so that I could have data access. In the apartment, we have wifi but when we go out, I might need to access the map/GPS on my phone, that’s why I need the data service.

Our apartment is on the 6th floor and we could see a very neat cemetery from our window. Sunrise is at around 4.45 am and sunset around 6.50 pm. Thus we need to get up very early to perform Subuh prayers.

Yesterday and today, my husband went to his office. The kids and I just stayed in because we were flat from our adventures on Monday and Tuesday. I just had to get out to get some food. I’ll talk about food in another entry. It’s not easy to find food that is Muslim friendly. We must be really careful in buying food and drinks.

Posted in General

How to Take Notes: From a Textbook

Really helpful tips for students.

Statics and Stationery

This method is best suited for textbook or article notes, and is a version of revised notes. It is also well suited for books you plan on returning to the bookstore or books you have rented, as it does not involve writing directly in the book itself.

First, you’ll need to find a notebook, and the pens you like the best. My favorite notebooks to work with for note-taking, especially for my “revised” notes, are the Moleskine, hard or soft cover, in size extra large. For this specific class (Intro to Gender and Women’s Studies), I decided that lined pages would suit my needs better. For my math, engineering, and science classes, I usually opt for squared paper, as I draw in lots of diagrams and graphs.

My favorite pens ever are Staedtler Triplus Fineliners, so even though they show through the pages a little bit, I still choose to…

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Posted in General

The Remarkable Structure of the Qur’an.

Subhanallah. The Holy Quran is a truly divine revelation. Without doubts, it is the words of Allah. No human being, not even Nabi Muhammad, peace be upon him, is capable of writing and composing such beautiful messages.

Many Prophets, One Message


The Qur’an is a very unique book in terms of its composition. Its 114 chapters (or ‘Surahs’ in Arabic) are not arranged chronologically or thematically. Even within the individual chapters, numerous topics can be covered with sudden switches from one topic to another and then back again.

This unique structure at face value may appear to be disjointed. However, modern research has discovered a sophisticated structural coherence in the Qur’an known as ring composition.


Ring composition has been explained by Mary Douglas in her book “Thinking in Circles: An Essay on Ring Composition”. In ring compositions there must be a correspondence between the beginning and the end. It is structured as a sort of circle, or mirror image. The central meaning of the text is placed at its centre. The second half mirrors the first half, in reverse order — e.g., A, B, C, D, C’…

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