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The Madness of MokcikNab
Motives, movements and melodrama in the life of a thirty something mum.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007
I celeng you

This post is dedicated to my father, who enjoys finding out the origins of Terengganu words. The following are actually, verbatim, from a dictionary:

gocoh - to box, to thump, scuffle
gohong - hole, cave, den
celeng - money box
colek - to take a little of, to nudge a little

Sounds familiar enough if you're from Terengganu or Kelantan, yes? Amazingly this was taken from the Kamus Lengkap Indonesia-Inggeris.

This started out when I was talking to Dr Rohani, who is the wife of the MSD chief in Indonesia. She's from Seberang Takir and I remarked that I found many Indonesian words similar to Terengganuspeak. She agreed wholeheartedly, and pointed out how Indonesians call 'making noise' geger, which is an utterly East Coast expression. Iseng-iseng (just on a lark), I went through Adam's dictionary and found so many words that my grandmother would have used in her conversation.

Words like:

ganyah - to scrub
pongah - conceited
gerai - sitting platform (as opposed to the Malay 'gerai', which means stall)
karih- to stir
katik - small or dwarf
geluk - drinking-bowl
congkong - to squat
cobek - to tear away (usually associated with food)

And then, there's 'kedaung' and 'lepang', both of which are trees, the former I guess is really green and the latter, bitter. A 'celeng' is actually a small boar, which is probably why Terengganu people call the piggy bank after it.

Indonesians always use "ngga usah" for don't, similar to the Terengganu "dok soh". We also use "takmboh", when we refuse something. The dictionary says 'emboh' means to like, or to have a mind to, which makes sense, because "tak emboh" would mean exactly the opposite.

Saiffuddin thinks it is time I get off my butt and find out exactly the link between Indonesia and the East Coast. My ancestry, songket, gamelan and pempek (their version of kerepok lekor) have given us a rough outline, but I am dying to fill in the blanks. Anyone want to help? Nok ke takmboh?


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