Thursday, 2 January 2014

Zainah bt Mohd Yusope

Zainah bt Mohd Yusope
@ Cik Nah; a math genius
Kakak Bapak

Name: Zainah bt Mohd Yusope
Call name: Bapak called his sister Che' Nah. I called her Che' Nah. Noni called her Mak Che' Nah.
Relationship: She is Bapak's 2nd elder sister
Children: She married but had no children
Born: Thursday 12 midnight (Khamis 12 malam) on 3 April 1924
Deceased: 2000
Place of demise: Rumah Pak Din in Cheras, KL

Che Nah attended school till Standard 2 and then dropped out of school. She spoke Malay, English, Indian and some Chinese languages which I don't know.

She married a few times, but unfortunately none of her marriages worked and she did not have any children.

I still think of her as a math genius. She was a math genius but her mind flipped and she became insane. Most people said she was "gila" but I don't think so. When I knew her, her mind was already flipped but she remained a math genius when I knew her in 1964-1973. She could do third root of any large number - she didn't use a calculator but she can give the correct answer to any decimal number. She was very quick at multiplication especially very large numbers. I haven't seen a math genius of this nature. Malays say that to be able to do something like this (calculate big #) would involve the use of "jin" which would eavesdrop on answers, etc. I don't believe so.

How was her brain affected? I asked Mak about Che Nah's brain. Mak said she probably had chickenpox of the brain and her state of mind was like that after she recovered from severe chickenpox.

She needed to be looked after. At first Bapak helped to look after Che Nah. Then Pak Din took care of her till she died. Later Pak Din died, and then Mak Cik Fauziah died.

We didn't do MRI on her brain and didn't do brain autopsy on her at death. We should have done them because that was a big clue we missed for how a math genius became to be.

She was thin and tall. She was quiet most of the time. Sometimes she smiled or politely asked a question or two. She was always talking to herself or talking to me. She liked to tell stories and spontaneously told stories about anything. She never stopped talking except when she was asleep. She talked incessantly while not connected to others around her. Her talk was aimless. When I asked her, she responded to my questions, but then continued talking and seemed like she entered into a world of her own, talking to nobody.

In her old age, she suffered from a hip fracture due to osteoporosis.

She died in 2000, aged 76.

Middle-aged life

Che Nah and Mak Nya with Mak Nya's son Rahim having lunch. Location unknown
Life in Banda Hilir, Malacca early 1960s

Che Nah at Masjid Banda Hilir in Malacca, early 1960s

Che Nah near the refrigerator (made in 1950s). The retro fridge was light green. Inside 262-T Banda Hilir house.
Hari Raya Aidilfitri 1963. Che Nah lived at 262-T Banda Hilir with our family till end of 1963

Che Nah married a few times in her old age. I went to one of her weddings. However, she did not have any children.

Visited by relatives

Siapa nama nenek di sebelah kanan?


Lived with Pak Din's family 

Photo before Year 2000

Before Che Nah died in 2000
Before Mak died on 5 June 2004
Before Pak Din died on 18 August 2006
Before Bapak died on 8 March 2009
Before Mak Bedah died on 3 February 2018

Mak Bedah and her surviving siblings, before Year 2000. Standing from left are Che Nah/ Zaina (#3) and Mak Bedah (#12). Men seated from left are Pak Din (#13), Bapak (#8) and Pak Saleh (#15).

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