Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Time to Move On & Dates for Sale in Ramadhan

Shall I go or shall I stay?

I try to block my mind to the fact that I shall be moving out of my lovely sanctuary before the end of this month. How I will miss the rain and the rising streamlet. The beautiful flight of the large birds and the sweet songs every morning. The lightning blue kingfisher and ripples in the water. Mr Biawak and junior biawak - large monitors. I did hesitate about giving my notice to the landlord but I know I must move on.

Detached, perhaps to prepare myself to leave

Strangely enough, I do not feel much attachment to the apartment itself though I really appreciate the fresh air, so cool that I sometimes need to use a light blanket at night. And the air con is not even on! I used to switch on the air conditioner from 7pm right up to morning because of the hot weather in Subang. At Tropicana, its really COOL. I think I must have used the air conditioner maximum 7 times for the whole year.

What happens when trees are felled?

It really shows that when we cut down all trees and leave everything covered in concrete we will experience local weather change. If we cut down a whole hill, what do we expect?

Why am I saying goodbye?

So why am I saying goodbye to all this? Not much choice, really. I have to be practical as moving on means we save a lot of time on the road and that means saving a great deal on petrol, toll, wear and tear of the vehicles and also less stress insha'Allah.

It certainly is nicer to drive 15 minutes to class instead of spending 45 minutes minimum each trip. I do not even have to drive, I can just walk to work. In the end, the most important thing I will save is TIME. It is invaluable and cannot be captured ever again.

Boxes, boxes everywhere

Coming back to moving house, I am getting used to the ever growing number of boxes in every room of the apartment. This time I am going to move in stages. Monday one lorry load and the following week, another lorry will send the rest of the items.

Somethings gotta go...

This way I will not fill the house with too many boxes and furniture all at once. I find it difficult to part with my collection of books. To make up for that I gave away a few bags of clothes, bed linens, cooking utensils and equipment etc. Somethings have to go....

Blank Upstairs

My mind is quite blank and I have not decided where to position the furniture or where to store the kitchen stuff. I am not the kind who enjoys housekeeping. Moving house is very challenging. Stressed for weeks and after moving stressed for even more, as it takes forever to put things in order again.


Dates for Ramadhan

I got my new order for a carton of Lyna fresh dates from Tunisia today. In July there will be more orders. Some dates will be sent to customer's relatives overseas. I sell dates every Ramadhan as it gives me a chance to earn a little extra income and my customers get their dates at a reasonable price instead of paying more at the shops.

Is it fun? Mmmm ...Not exactly

Its actually hard work and I have to carry the heavy cartons everywhere. Whenever I collect, when I remove them from the car to store in a cool place in the house, then some have to be in the fridge. Finally I have to place them all again into the car for delivery. And that means carrying the heavy cartons from the car which may be far away, to the customer's home. Sometimes they are not in and I have to visit them again to collect what they owe. Phew!!! Does that sound fun? Certainly not. Every year I tell myself that's the last time I would ever sell the dates. Yet each year I end up doing it again.

Why do I want to sell dates again?

Why? I really appreciate my friends who make effort to order the dates from me. They can buy them from anywhere they like, maybe at a cheaper price. Of course seldom the same quality. I keep my prices fairly low to keep my customers satisfied. They never ask for discount but I know people spend a lot on everything in Ramadhan. Its good to give a reasonable price so they can do more ibadah.

Customer Satisfaction

And I feel happy when I see they are pleased with the products. That is job satisfaction - when my customers thank me and express their appreciation. When I manage to deliver the items on time though many of them order at the last minute. That means making so many calls.fighting for the last carton, making extra trips and getting caught in traffic jams because the timing is unexpected.

Flying Dates

Sometimes they suddenly need to order extra to send to their relatives abroad. That means extra business for me. :D The dates are flying everywhere!

No wonder my friends are so enthusiastic about selling dates!

Actually some friends are selling the same items at RM2 more per box and that means extra profit of RM24 per carton. I sell Lyna fresh dates with stalks at only RM14 but my friends are selling them by the hundreds of boxes, between RM15 to RM16 per box. Some shops sell exactly the same dates at RM18. I still sell them at RM 14 this year.

Other varieties - everyone has different taste

It also gets a little complicated as I also sell several other qualities like Mariami, Bam, Ajwa and Medjool. Sometimes I need to weigh and repack them into smaller bags for distribution to the end source, usually orphans and needy. This activity is quite relaxing and rewarding though I need to sacrifice my time.

Not right to make too much profit for dates

I just feel its not right to make too much profit for such an essential item in Ramadhan. Making it affordable means more people can get their rewards from Allah when they buy and distribute their dates to friends and strangers alike. Yes, we all want to share in order to obtain some of their rewards too. Allah is so Generous, we can benefit from other people's efforts so easily. Alhamdulillah!

How to resist a win win situation?

I consider it an ibadah to provide customers with quality affordable dates. I also get to donate a lot of dates for breaking of fast because I get them at a discount. That is fringe benefit. Win Win situation that is hard to resist.


  1. Salam sis.

    Insha'Allah my family will restock our supplies for Ramadhan soon, but maybe you can inbox me your price 'cos I'm thinking of purchasing a few boxes to distribute around. :)

    This post reminded me of a Ramadhan sadaqah half-a-date project a sister in the States initiated a couple of years ago. We pool our money together then we ship crates of dates to the people in Africa. Wouldn't it be awesome if we can do something like that here?

  2. Why not sis? I would like to contribute. It may be cheaper to buy them in Africa. We all know some people there. I can also ask a friend from South Africa. Even RM100 a person can make things happen. What a great idea!

  3. Assalaamu'alaykum sis,

    Good idea, i would like to contribute too! (although not much, coz I don't really have a job, therefore no income :/ and this fulltime job I have does not pay me in monies! :P)

    Sis, I Wonder if I can sell dates too? I won't take your clients of course hehe. Like, to neighbours and ppl staying around my area..
    If not, i'd like to buy some dates from you, inshaa Allaah.
    Please inbox or sms me the details, usually go for Mariami, and MEdjool!

  4. So sorry to have missed your comment dear sis. Guess I was really busy and tired in Ramadhan. Trying to focus on my work, my saum, my solatul lail and other commitments. Didn't check blog for long time.

    You can sell the dates together with me next year insha Allah. We can try to work something out. I feel bad that I did not reply in time.

    By the way, please keep those comments coming in! At least I'm not talking to myself. :)