May 4, 2009

Agriculture is business (but it is not for me)

My mother is a successful businesswoman after she retired in 1989. She rested for 3 years, in which she travelled around the world first to the United States and then backpacking through Europe. She did these travel when she was in her 50s. She then tried to rest but after a few years of not really doing anything, after working for nearly 25 years, she decided that she wanted to do a business. She had worked as an officer to one of the biggest plantation company in Malaysia since she still young and that was actually how he met my father. When my mother retired, which had everything to do with me already going to college and I had full scholarship, so they didn't need to finance me through it, and my brother had secured his first job, my mother was supposed to really retire. Not start a business.

What she love is agriculture. So, she became a landscape contractor. Since we were small, all my brothers and me had to support her love for it. We would be asked every school  holiday to go straight to the orchards which she had cultivated since forever as the land is adjacent to my grandfather's ancestral house. We hated the fact that we have to forgo all the fun that we could have with our friends during school holidays. We had to cultivate the land, pulled out weeds, sprayed pesticides and then during fruit seasons, we had to sell some of the fruits. We were taught everything that we need to know how to cultivate our own land. We had the full low down on all these but sadly none of us ever really had any interest.

I remembered seeing my brothers trying to wiggle themselves out of going to the fruit orchard by staying back at their boarding school or even saying that they have to study for exams. I knew better as they themselves told me that they just couldn't stand staying under the sun. Their other excuse was that they had done it longer than me and that time (which seems everytime) it was my turn. None of us really became interested in agriculture. There was once in Malaysian history in the 80s when agriculture was brought back as the 'in' thing as the government wanted to minimise the need to import food. Then in the new millenium, when our Prime Minister changed, he tried to revive it again. Agriculture was pushed as a business now. Supposedly enough to support the nation need for food. Again.

As most of my friends who wanted to do business seems to find agriculture as a new thing to them, I told them flat out that I am not interested in joining them in making agriculture as a business. I have been involved in it for quite some time I told them. The nearest that I have been to agriculture as business was when this one period where my wife worked for my mother. I myself do sometimes help my mother if she need invoices sent to somewhere near my office or letters needed to be typed but it was more obligatory than really joining her in her business. My mother had been in the business for nearly 18 years now. She does have this one more contract as a landscaping contractor which the awarder kept renewing. The orchard is still there and I actually do barbeque there sometimes when fruit season comes. Usually, it is to treat clients from my firm. Bust still, as the title says, for me, agriculture is just not for me (at least for now) 


Buzzing J said...

An amazing mother you have there.

F A R H A said...

what a good mom do u have. bagos la 2. anak die bagos skali x?

life4hire said...

bro..i'm amazed to read about your mother..backpacking alone is it?

my friends are also into agriculture these days and they spent their weekends on their land..i still believe getting money of the internet though..but maybe i can put some money into their projects...

Kujie said...

siapa nak wariskan nanti?

Calvin Soo KJ said...

i guess after so long working, your mum would find it hard to resist but to find something to do, rather than to just sit down at home doing nothing. my mum's the same. so, in order to encourage her to rest and enjoy her life, i bought and taught her how to play ps3...hehehe. and now i regret it becoz she kills me in

kruel74 said...

Buzzing J - Yep, so true

Fraha - Kena orang lain yang assess lah

Life4hire - Tak lah alone tapi still amazing sebab orang lain in 20s. I only need to say yes then the lands are always there

Kujie - Waris tu takde hal, apa jadi dgn tanah tu je yg belum tentu

Calvin - Happening mom you have there. My mom still need her her gardens and orchards

Ratty said...

I agree with everyone else, your mother sounds like a very impressive person. I'm sure you are very proud of her. We all have to follow our own lives though. I'll bet working in the orchards gave you a good work ethic for what you do now.

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