If this story were occurring here in the United States, there would be, somewhere in the newspaper, an accompanying personal ad that would read something like this:
MWF seeks SWM to replace current husband for companionship. Must like older women.
That would probably be all the more that it would say, and it would be straight truth. The woman would be married. The man would most likely have to be single. And they would have to like older women because I highly doubt that someone who would answer the ad would be older than 107-year-old Wook Kundor, or as she has been affectionately known to her last 22 husbands, Wookie.
Okay, I made that last part up. And since this strange but true drama is unfolding in Malaysia, there probably isn't a cheesy personal ad tucked in the back of some friendly local newspaper or one of those strange fliers that you can get for free at rest areas and truck stops all across the country. But there is the quite aged Wook Kundor, who is very much married, and who is ready to put herself on the market and search for husband number 23.
See, Wook and her husband are sort of like minor celebrities in their part of Malaysia, called Terengganu, in the way that people who do something crazy and get their 15 minutes of fame are celebrities here. The reason why is that while, as we said before, Wook is 107, her current husband, her 22nd husband (that's about one every five years of her life, for those of you who are keeping track), is only 37. That's a little bit of an age difference. So if you think your buddy is robbing the cradle because he's like 32 and dating a college sophomore, think again. He's within the realm of the normal when compared to these two. Her husband, Muhammad Noor Che Musa, whom we will call Noor because I think that goes well with Wook - "Hello, you have reached the home of Wook and Noor. We aren't available to come to the phone right now but please leave a message and we will get back to you as soon as we can. Thanks!" BEEP - was at one time her lodger according to the BBC, which either means he rented space from her or she rented space from him. To be completely honest with you I can't tell, but I highly doubt it matters. The pair was so popular when they married in 2005 that their wedding photos were even published in the regional media. And all seemed well. Noor said at one time that is was "God's will" that he fell in love with the centenarian.
So, I am sure that you have about a hundred thousand questions. I am not going to answer most of them, I assure you. But the one I will answer is "Why is she looking for a 23rd husband when she is already married?" The reason is that all has not been roses for Noor and Wook since they were bound in the ties of holy matrimony, which are apparently very weak when they involve Wook. She is like the kryptonite to matrimony's Superman. See, Noor has been away in the capital Kuala Lampur being treated for a drug addiction, and Wook is afraid that he's not going to come back once his treatment is complete. And I can't blame her. I've seen it a hundred times: man falls in love with 107-year-old, man marries 107-year-old, man gets addicted to drugs and goes off to rehab, man gets out of rehab and realizes that he is married to 107-year-old, man finds out that you can have relations with someone without their hip breaking, so man never comes back. It's a classic tale. Apparently Wook has heard it too, and with the Muslim holy month of Ramadan coming up, she is feeling a little lonely. So she wants to make sure all is on the up and up with Noor.
With all this swirling in her mind, Wook has decided that she needs to find out for sure how Noor feels about her. So what she is going to do is try to find someone in her village to drive her to the capital to visit Noor so she can discern his intentions. How's that for a shocker, hey? She is going to ask him if he still loves her. And just like a telemarketer, she has a plan for whether he says no or yes.
Should Noor tell Wook that he still feels for her, then she will reconsider her plans to divorce him and find a 23rd husband to fill her emptiness. God that sounded wrong. But should he say he still feels for her she will keep him around. Should he waver, or say that no he does not care for Wook anymore, she will leave Noor and seek out another man to "fill my forlornness" says Wook, who also notes that "Lately, there is this kind on insecurity in me." Which I guess I can't blame her for because she is 107-years-old and I can't imagine that there is a large market for wives over 100 in Malaysia or anywhere really, except maybe Shandy Pines Retirement Community.
I worry though, more about poor Noor. First of all, it's bad enough that you are in voluntary drug treatment in Malaysia, because I can't imagine that it's like Betty Ford here where Hollywood douchebags go and basically have a spa vacation where they get massages and talk about how hard it is to be rich and famous, no, I imagine that Malaysian rehab is much, much less fun. So here he is, in detox or whatever, and you 107-year-old wife comes in and dumps you? For me, that's it. That is where it would end. I would be a confirmed bachelor for the rest of my days because if I can't keep a 107-year-old woman in my life, I would just assume that there is no hope left for me and I would give up women. Maybe I would join the priesthood and just be done with it because I don't know that there is any surviving that blow, you know what I am saying, Company?
So anyway, I suppose that we will just have to wait and see what happens with Noor and Wook; I suppose that we will never quite know, unless of course one of us is watching Terengganu Today on our 1600-channel super-duper satellite TV package while we get ready for work and sees the pictures of the 23rd wedding ceremony for Wook, and then lets me know and then we can talk about it. I am wondering why Wook is going to bother at 107, but I suppose the need for companionship is just as great when you've been around since 1902 as it is when you've only been around since 1982. So I suppose good luck to her, and to Noor her husband, let's hope they both get to where they need to be. Oh, and if you like older women, I hear that Wook is available.