I know I supposed to write in the January... but, February is not that bad to start a year, right?
Ok, I was supposed to be working at a new place with a new job title - Accountant. It has been a dream of mine ever since I fall in love with debit and credit to be an accountant one day. At my age now, I should've been one. But fate is not on my side yet. I only manage to hold on to that job for four days only, then my heart started to scream, "No...., I can't do this!".
The salary is great, but no freedom in working hours. Not to mention that the place is far from home. I just couldn't imagine if anything happened at home, coz I wouldn't be around. I don't even have the time to take care of my Mak and Abah too. My Mak is suffering from Parkinson, similar to Mohamad Ali or Michael J Fox (the actor). But Mak's condition is not as bad as those two, maybe because of my affectionate love for her... (chewah!)..
Also I discovered, that my love for chess is more than my love for accounts. No matter how much accounts attracts me, but chess is the best! even though I can't go out to play at any tourney as often as my school days, but at least I got the time to teach and play chess by my self at home.
So, after giving a full consideration I said to the boss, I resigned.
Currently I am working at my former company. Working under the "no EQ" accountant, having all those annoying back stabbing colleagues, and handling the "never ending stories" of problems within the accounts department. But....... I am happy as I was never before. It is like I'm breathing a new air, living in a new life suddenly, because I got the chance to see the world outside and therefore I am grateful that I'm back.
Now, I have all the freedom that I want. I have the flexible working hours in completing my everyday job, and during weekends, I can give chess lessons to my students. And when my Mak isn't well, I can always go home to see her even for half an hour, coz it only took me 15 minutes to be home.
So now, I am less stress and happy as I should be. I can work and earn my salary, and get extra income for my Mak's medicine by teaching chess, and that is the best part of all. I can be with chess everyday!
I never realised until now that chess does bring "life" to me. When I play chess, it feels as though I am alive, I belongs to this world, because it is the only world that no one can mess with me and it is my turf! Can you imagine how my life has been without chess for all those 9 years? It is truly a blessing in disguise that Allah swt has showed me. No one can live a life with just work-work-work, you just got to have a hobby / hobbies or something! and mine is chess.
I started my chess this year by doing chess promotion from school to school around town. And Luckily, I got myself 3 new students..(alhamdullillah). And I got a chance to do a chess clinic at one of the school near home.
It is a sad thing that chess players in Kuantan is not those in KL. From my experience doing the promotions and teaching chess, most of them only know how to play, but not at a level to compete. Also, most of the chess teachers here give a strange look when I promote chess as an education to them. People would normally think that chess is just a game. People here never sees it as a sport or a skill that can improve students mine thinking. And that is exactly what I am teaching. I am teaching the students to use their side of the brain that they have never use it before, and improve their way of thinking by relate chess to their life.
One of my students, after listening to my chess stories and read the chess article that I showed to him, always quote "playing chess is like having a psychic power". Chess is the only sports that chess players have the ability to predict what is the next move.
Unfortunately for my students, there is no tournament in Kuantan. Therefore I can't test their skills against other players.
All of my students are in their first phase of the game. I do not concentrate the method of memorising any openings yet. Because I believe in strong knowledge of basics. What I teach is based on my experienced for years playing chess locally and internationally. So what I teach is what I learnt, and my guide is my chess book which I wrote. All those years of competing, training with russian trainer, listening to chess chat among friends, and study chess books, is what I gave to my students in simplified form.
My charges is not high compared to KL, but reasonable. It covers my monthly mileage and materials given. Regarding time, I can teach more than 2 hours per lesson if the students wants more from me with no extra charge. So the parents usually said "it is worth hiring me". I love chess, and I am teaching chess with all my love for the game and with all my heart to it, not just for the money.
To me everyone can play chess. As Mark Dvorevsky said "with purposeful training you can significantly develop your ability in the field". I know that there are certain players with great talents, but passion for chess doesn't require any talent at all. If you have the desire to be great in chess, it is enough that the passion for the game drives you there...... I am not one the great talents to be a world class player, but my deep love for chess has brought me to beautiful games, to beautiful places and meeting with beautiful mind of people....
Until next time with more stories from me..
Former Malaysia's National Woman Champion