Alena is a Penangite, the oldest of six, was born during World War II. Her father came to Penang from the Philippines, as a young boy with his two elder sisters. Her mother’s mother was a Nyonya and has been in Penang for generations. She recalls her childhood, days spent playing by the padang that once existed on Upper Penang Road, and remembers stories of the hats her father, the only milliner in Penang of that time, made.