Tuesday, August 30, 2005

a Frog on Flags and a Happy Merdeka day…

Merdeka means independence and on the 31st August of every year, Malaysian’s would go out in full force to celebrate our ‘Hari Merdeka’, our Independence Day or so hoped the ruling party. It’s now 5.30 pm, I am working on my computer and thinking what can I do tonight to usher in Merdeka day. Was pretty busy, so didn’t make advance plans; so there’s nothing on the cards yet for me. Standing alone in my room and singing the negaraku at the stroke of midnight accompanied by the live broadcast on TV feels pretty lame…so I do feel like getting something on the cards and quick. I message one of my friends…hey any plans for tonight? Expecting a yeah, let’s go celebrate Merdeka with the crowd, I get instead let’s go shopping…it’s the last few days of the mega sale. Another friend said yeah…Redbox and karaoke…very patriotic presuming they are there to sing negaraku, but the chances of them crooning bad renditions of pop tunes are far more likely.

Thoughts got me hungry…I decided to go downstairs and acquire an Otai Burger (A new variation of the Ramli has surfaced it seems, Mc Donalds watch out). Things doesn’t seem so ‘Merdeka’ but at least I have got my flag flying from my window…I thought as I peered up between the leaves to see my flag. It was unsettling, in my hugely overpopulated high density condominium block, there’s only a mere 4 flags. I kid you not….In the whole six apartment blocks that made up the Kelana Puteri Condominiums, I hardly see any more than 10 flags…inclusive of two on the guard house placed by management. A glimpse at Kelana Putera down the road fared no better…the two blocks in my view had a Malaysian flag count of 0. More prominent were TO LET and FOR SALE call 012…. signs.

After getting my burger and going back up to the apartment a malay dude gestured at me and I said to him, ‘satu block bagunan besar, kurang 10 bendera…’( One huge apartment block, less than 10 flags…)He laughed in agreement...but remarked…ya, kerajaan tidak bagi kita, mereka patut beri…(Yes, the government didn’t give us the flag, they should give it to us…) For crying out loud, are you that poor you can’t buy one? I said at heart…sampai hati kata macam tu ( he really can have the heart to say that!) golly, so if I look out of my apartment window and the scarcity of the flag in kelana jaya area must be an appalling indication of onset poverty? Can’t buy a flag….good golly…

Anyway, there are many buildings in the city out there with flags and declaration of merdeka aplenty, there are cars enveloped with flags, there are beautiful commercials firing our spirits on TV…but I just wish…I just so wish that here in Kelana Jaya, admist the ordinary folk in my condominium block and its surrounding areas and you my dear reader would be so grateful as to fly the flag…maybe not this year but please remember next year. As I type this, there the sound of a flapping flag outside my window in tune to my pecking of the keyboard…it sounds nice…to my friends and all Malaysians out there… a Happy Merdeka Day!

Writer's Note: Blog version...Original writing much longer slated for magazine publication later.

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Living Life to the full...I hope to live by the principle that success doesn't mean making a tonne of money though I am blessed that i do make a decent sum...but success equates to appreciateing all the God given wonder this world has to offer before my time is up...