After 25 years of selling used golf balls, 66-year-old Jaapar Leman is showing no signs of slowing down despite the impact of the pandemic on his small business.
Speaking to NST, Jaapar said, “This is my only source of income… At this age, what else can I do?”
The former soldier would sit at the road shoulder near Ayer Keroh’s Tiara Gold and Country Club with his 46-year-old wife Arniza Mokthar who happens to be a person with disabilities.
Jaapar said his wife has been his inspiration to continue with his small business as he has to take care of her.
“The Covid-19 pandemic is the hardest time as compared to all my years in this trade.
“I only managed to sell one packet of golf balls last month for RM30. That was already enough for me to live.
“I am relieved even if I get to sell only one packet of the golf balls. At least there’s money for us.”
Even though sports activities are prohibited due to the MCO, Jaapar continues to keep his spirits up by keeping his little trade going.
“The word despair does not exist for me. Every day, I would go out with my wife as early as 8am and set up shop until the evening.
“We will pack some rice to eat throughout the day, and we wait here for potential customers. We sell these packets of golf balls.
“We are thankful for we have not run out of food during these trying times, as even eating rice with plain ‘sambal’ is enough for us,” he said.
Jaapar added that as long as he has the strength he will try to earn his own income to pay his bills and put food on the table.
“Only my wife receives monthly assistance from the Welfare Department. That helps as it eases our burden. Praise be to Allah, recently we received food basket assistance.
“My son has also been helping me in my business, given that my wife is not so healthy and I need to take care of her.”
Jaapar also said that since his son has helped him, a lot of people have stopped by his stall and supported his business.
“Thankfully, there will be more sustenance for us when a lot of these packets are sold,” he said.