I was writing on the board when suddenly "BOOOOMMM!!"
My heart skipped a beat.
I turned around, expecting half the class to be gone but all the students looked normal and nothing was out of place. I was the only one whose heart was thumping like crazy.
Trying to keep my composure, I asked the nearest girl,"What was that sound?"
"Mercun la, teacher (It's firecrackers)."
Gosh, firecrackers in the school compound during school hours? What are they trying to prove?
"BOOOMMM!!" Another firecracker. The sound came from the middle of the open court.
It's Ramadhan, the fasting month. Yet some naughty ones are already preparing for the coming Eidilfitri celebration by breaking the school rules - lighting the firecrackers they have smuggled into school. Those things are actually banned items not only in school but in the country but each year the smugglers always manage to get the items into the hands of the buyers. And most buyers are youngsters.
We scold, we advice, we nag and we even stand waiting at strategic places for the next "boom", hoping to catch the culprits as they light the forbidden items during the school recess period. Some are caught red-handed and ushered to the principal's office. The irony is, they seem to get the kick seeing us jump off our seats at the sudden loud sounds from the firecrackers.
And it happens in many schools during this fasting season.
Then I found out something.
"Why do they dare to light the firecrackers in school? " I asked a male student from one of the end classes. "Aren't they scared of getting caught?"
"A la, teacher. They enjoy doing it. Some are "cabar" (dared) by their friends. And if they are caught they know that they'd "kena gantung" (be suspended) from school for 2 weeks, so they're happy to do it. They don't care about the punishment. They'll be able to relax at home during the rest of Ramadhan while the rest of us have to come to school."
Now I see the picture.
At least they are smart enough not to play with their own homemade firecrackers which still occurs every year. In rural areas some victims have lost their fingers due to the sudden explosion of homemade firecrackers.
Hmmm...children and teenagers nowadays...not undertanding the real meaning of Ramadhan..
(more real stories at http://pkpgtesolian.blogspot.com/)