Thursday, June 2, 2011


"You can take the boy out of the kampung, but you certainly can't take the kampung out of the boy" is a famous catchphrase used by Datuk Lat (elder brother of Mamat Khalid, directed many Malaysian films including box-office Hantu Kak Limah Balik Rumah) in his Kampong Boy series. The series are narrated in English and translated into other languages such as French and Japanese, and successfully sold abroad (I've not yet found the series in Deutsch but heard that it has been translated into Deutsch as well). It tells a lot of stories about author's childhood and adult experiences in his Kampong (coincidentally one of Kampong in Perak, my homestate). I used to read the series and found it closed to my heart simply because it had many similarities with my Kampong background. Another series that I used to read was Pulau Juoy and the Gang by a cartoonist called Boy PJ (PJ stands for Pulau Juar, a kampong of my late father located near to Teluk Intan, Perak) which used to appear regularly in Gila-Gila magazine not so long ago.

Fast forward, it is neither stories of Datuk Lat nor Boy PJ that I wanna talk here. But it is about the above modified phrase i.e. "You can take the boy out of Malaysia, but you certainly can't take Malaysia out of the boy". I simply want to be that boy who think that there is no better place to live in this world other than Malaysia. It has been more than a year I live abroad in Germany. But honestly I don't subscribe to the idea that living in a developed country is better than Malaysia. To be fair, sure enough there are a lot of things such as transportation, physical development, education system, etc better than Malaysia. And of course for the first timer, you enjoy the wonder of four seasons beginning with spring season with varieties of flowers blossom everywhere, summer with longer daytime for outdoor activities, autumn with colourful leaves fall on the street, and not to forget winter where you experience sub-zero temperature with few inches of snow. But in general, with monsoon seasons, first class infrastructure and third class mentality, racial based policies, lack of freedom of information, etc, still I regard Malaysia as a better place to live in.

Malaysia as a country where you can easily find bunch varieties of foods such as nasi lemak, char kuey teow, pasembor, rojak, rendang, cendol, tempoyak just to name a few. It has a lot of colourful festivals such as Hari Raya, Gong Xi Fa Cai, Deepavali, Christmas, Thaipusam, Weesak and many public holidays. Geographically Malaysia is blessed with long sandy white beaches, beautiful mountainous landscapes, rich rainforest heritage and free from volcanoes and earthquakes. Malaysia is always my proud country.

I always dream Malaysia to be the best place for living. It must be a proud home to every Malaysian regardless of their skin colours. I've met some of my fellow countrymen who have been disillusioned by the so called unfair treatment and biased policies at home. They chose to work and live abroad to the extent giving up their Malaysian citizenships. I truly understand their predicament to seek better opportunity and fair treatment and do hope that they will come back to their beloved country one day. I want my Malaysian brothers and sisters, living in an environment that promotes harmony, respect and tolerance, and not one that bias and oppresses one another. In Malaysia, we should berdiri sama tinggi and duduk sama rendah. I am optimistic that this beautiful country remains in the hands of Malaysians who are honest, sincere, not greedy and capable to make Malaysia a better nation.

Change does not happen overnight. I can’t simply expect things like better education system, fair wages (or negara berpendapatan tinggi), low inflation, stronger democracy and so on to be great and wonderful the next day when I just sit back and see Malaysia from thousands kilometres away. It must be through a concerted effort of everybody to reform, transform or even revolutionize the country. We should stop constantly blaming bad, stupid and racist politicians (on both divides) for failing to carry out change. The fundamental thing is, change actually starts within us. We are the one who vote for those politicians.
Thinking of going back home for voting in the coming election.

God bless Malaysia!

(This article is written by my guest columnist)


sitiezahim said...

memang harapan kita pada negara macamtuh..sentiasa nak pikir Msia is the best tp bila mengenangkan banyak benda, ie kebajikan, kemajuan, politik, minda org Msia etc etc..kengkadang rasa malas nak balik..haha..tambah2 plak sistem pelajaran pon lain, kesian tengok budak2 kt Msia yg tadika pon dah ada exam, dan yuran tadika yg giler2 mahal, sedangkan budak2 should play n learn, enjoy their childhood..

Anonymous said...

Yeup.. you've made good point there.. then I guess that's our responsibility once we'r back.. put whatever effort to make Malaysia better for future generation..

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