Monday, 16 July 2012

Nestle @ Brickfields

Blogger Al-Manar was reminiscing about how Brickfields (now known as Little India) played an important role in the early days for him as well as for his family and I on the other hand upon reading Al-Manar's post  recalled the times when I was employed by Nestle Products (Head Office) at Jalan Brickfields in the late Seventies. 

I was thrust into a working world dominated by expatriates with a majority of non-Malay employees after freshly graduating from ITM (now UiTM).  If I remember correctly (it was 35 years ago anyway...), I was called up for  interviews while still in my final semester in two places on the same date and time ie Nestle and Petronas  (masa tu Petronas tidak gah lagi macam sekarang!).  To cut a long story short I chose to go for the Nestle interview because of the familiarity of the word NESTLE and MILO!  While still studying in college I used to travel along Jalan Brickfields and saw this big red letters NESTLE on a long rectangle building and thinking how nice if I can work there one day.  Alhamdulillah, after being shortlisted after the first interview and called up for a second interview I got the job as a Stenographer (are there stenographers nowadays????), well it was a step up to become a secretary back in those days.  I remember the secretary to the big boss (the General Manager) then drove a sports car to work...woweeee!  With big sunglasses and a scarf tied around her head (glamer habis!), she was a reminiscence of Grace Kelly in a movie..hahaha.  I was just a kampung girl from the east coast with no working experience except for a six weeks practical training and that was in my hometown in a government office.. and boy was I nervous and timid on my first day.  The personnel manager (an elderly Tuan Haji) was kind enough to explain to me that the management recruited more  Malay staff so as not to make us feel like 'Rusa Masuk Kampung' ( I must have looked so 'kampung like' throughout the interviews...hahaha) but then now I can look back on those times as all sweet memories.  

Now who would this be in the pictures below?  

He joined Nestle after a year I was there if I am not mistaken...thanks to my failing memories!  He was very attached to me and my circle of friends in the office and would tagged along with us for lunch, played pranks (a lot) on us and very popular with the staff at HO.  The first pic was when we threw him a surprise birthday party, tu nampak tersengih satu macam aje.. Second pic he personally gave me this pic of him when I left Nestle forever....sedih! 

With his versatile personality I am not at all surprise to see what he has achieved today....a Celebrity Chef with the famous restaurant and lately a title was bestowed upon him joining thousands and thousands with that title.  Baguslah dah jadi orang famous kan.... am happy for you :) 

Old faded photographs of yours truly with very close friends in Nestle...
My very best friends...Kai Sim and Suzanne Nani on either side of me....I miss u girls!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What wide grins we had...I think Mail was cracking jokes when this pic was taken. 

What I missed about Nestle?   I missed buying discounted Nestle products which cost a bit more siblings in KL really took advantage of this.  I missed the delicious Nasi Lemak with the overpouring of the 'gulai daging' sold by a Malay couple  on the corner of the Brickfields Parcel Post Office just opposite Nestle HO.  I missed not helping the blind cross the road (MAB is in Brickfields), you got the opportunity of helping them if you are working in this vicinity.  I don't missed the burden of work there (which is a lot!) but I missed my very nice boss CKH and I missed the atmosphere when the department (Distribution Dept.) where I was working turned into a fish market in the afternoons (around 3 or 4 pm) with three or more officers shouting  on the phones speaking with the forwarding agents at Port Kelang because that was the time when the imported bulk material for beverages/milk arrived on the cargo ships and oh... I missed the forever thick cup of hot Milo prepared by Angela, the tea lady on my table every morning :).  

 Nestle @ Brickfields is no longer there....only fond memories remain.


Al-Manar said...

You remember Brickfields as I do with very pleasant memories. My Brickfields will be mentioned again inm my blog as I promised.

ITM is always a better instituition to me than UITM. Its graduates were about the best we had. In particular there was never enough graduates in the field of stenography and secretary. The company I worked for had graduates exclusively from there. I know a few who worked for me then. They were excellent. A few of them are still in touch with us. Three of them have married children. We attended the weddings.

I have forgotten the name of a senior Nestle production manager I used to meet. He died about twenty years ago at a relatively young age.

Keep reminiscing.

naniasda said...

I couldn't agree with you more Pakcik about ITM graduates especially in the field you mentioned...we were really in demand back then, especially for us graduates of 'English Stenos'. I remember my shorthand lecturer, Mrs Nadarajah (she is a Chinese married to an Indian) telling us that we should apply jobs with established private companies and not government for we were geared to work in this kind of establishment. Apart from Nestle and Petronas I did received letters calling me for interviews at Exxon and Lever Brothers and till today I do feel a twinge of regret for not going to Exxon for the interview...but Allah Knows Best!...

Selamat Berpuasa to Pakcik and family :)

pB said...

Kak Nani

selamat berpuasa ....

masok gapo tu ....??

Chef tu ado restoran hok namo Rebung tu kor??
Tok ingat lar pulok namo dio

naniasda said...

Selamat Berpuasa jugok utk pB n famili :)

Akak paka main mmasok 'tunjuk'ke lauk ko lauk ni jah sokmo hari kijo, weekend br mmasok betul hehe..

Yolah, Chef Mail tu lah...tok seko jd sohor loni kalu banding nga dulu gak...x napok lasung ado ciri-ciri nok jjadi sohor tp tulah dih supo ado kata pepatah...tuah ayae napok di kaki, tuah manusia siapa yg tahu. Dulu gak gie ngenak gak bui ko dio lah..hehe

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