Monday, August 31, 2009

Senior citizen Malaysia

At 52, most people will be considered a senior citizen. For a civil servant, it is an age whereby one can opt to leave the service and get a pension. For others, most will be achieving the height of their careers before leaving or retiring in another 5 to 10 years. For my beloved country, she is still crawling on all four, trying to find it's directions and meaning in life. Why is that? Is it because we are a relatively young country compared to many other countries? Is it because we have had a long history of having been colonised by several countries? Is it beccause we are a country that consists of many people from diverse cultures and beliefs? Is it because we still have not learned to accept that we are all different and we have to respect one another BECAUSE OF and IN SPITE OF our differences?

How many times have I encountered situations when there are parties and gatherings attended by various races and people from different faiths ... only to find that the food is not suitable for some people? How many times have I attended talks/speeches, etc. whereby the speakers have made fun of people who practise different cultures? How many times have I attended functions where everyone is seated according to the colours of their skin? How many times have I seen a lack of respect for, and an unwillingness to learn about people who do things differently? How many times have I heard some people who should know better prove to us that they do not know anything every time they open their mouths? How many times ...? TOO MANY TIMES!

So when is this going to end? Perhaps never. But as human beings who dwell in this country, calling ourselves Malaysians, it is time to :

  • make an effort to live WITH one another, not IN SPITE OF one another
  • try to understand why our friends have different practices and RESPECT them for what they believe in
  • not just tolerate one another (I hate that word), but to accept one another. We can always agree to disagree, but we don't have to fight one another for a single conclusion.
  • see one another not according to the colour of our skin, but as Malaysians who are different
  • love this country so much that we can disregard all the small matters that are petty
  • appreciate our individual heritage, our differences and our beliefs, BUT not let these cloud our eyes and hearts that we live in this country which is so blessed with such diversity

It is with pride that I say I am a Malaysian. I want to continue having that pride. Let me not, one day, give up on this beautiful country. Let me grow old with Malaysia, as a Malaysian.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

What kind of logic?

At this point in time I am just very disappointed and disgusted in some people who think they are so progressive. They think they are fighting for the rights of their own race. They think they can get away with insulting people of other faiths just because they have the number to do so. Perhaps they are right in thinking they can get away with it. Afterall, it was not reported in the papers exactly what they did - how they proudly claim that they are defending their rights to their place of residence and they would defend it to death. All because a place of worship (not their own) will be relocated near to them. They were not complaining. They marched and they brought along a symbol of holiness belonging to the other faith, and stepped on it. And with glee as well as pride, they claimed to champion their own rights. What utter nonsence! What utter disrespect for other people! And they want to say YEAH WE'RE FOR 1MALAYSIA! Utter rubbish! We shall wait and see if this will even make it to mainstream newspaper and news channel. Hypocrisy in its highest degree.
For those not in the know of what had happened, go to

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

No mood to blog

The last week or so, I have been sharing my laptop with hubby and he has been monopolizing it. Thus I was relegated to only having computer time late in the evening for a short while. Hence the lack of updates. In any case, I was not in the mood much.
So school is on a 10 day break. Nice to be able to rest a bit. A bit - because I still have to mark papers. And books. And entertain my little ones. And sit for a silly ole exam. So far, I have managed to not do anything significant. Just been reading, studying, watching TV, playing with my kids and the dog. Oh and visited an uncle who has just had a bypass. That's it.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


Someone commented today that English teachers' workload isn't as bad as BM teachers' workload. Reason being : BM has 4 hours each week and English has "only" 3 hours each week. So a BM teacher who teaches 4 classes of BM has 16 hours of BM to teach, whereas an English teacher who teaches 4 English classes only teach 12 hours. Tell me where the logic is when the BM teacher and the English teacher end up teaching the same number of hours if you count the number of hours they teach for other subjects? And since this is referring to Sri Aman in particular, tell me what BM teacher has to do RFP for niche area? What extra extra programmes do BM teachers have to run? What headache does a BM teacher have to have, planning how to spend the money that the govt gives to us? This is not to say that BM teachers do not work hard. What I am saying is "DO NOT INSULT ENGLISH TEACHERS WHO HAVE BEEN CARRYING THIS NICHE AREA BUSINESS AND DOING EVERYTHING TO MAKE SURE THAT THE SCHOOL REMAINS CLUSTER". It is demeaning to us to have to beg to be recognised. When it suits some people, we are praised and thanked for the good work we have done. When it doesn't suit them, our work is "not as heavy"! That comment really riled me up and made me wonder WHY we are doing so much work. Why are we working so hard to ensure that the school benefits as a whole although English is the niche area? Why do we worry about how the money is spent? We could have just as easily put our feet down and said that we would spend the money on ENGLISH and no one else! Where is the gratitude? Where is the team we have been talking about?

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The weekend that has been

Yesterday was a school day. Instead of going to school, I made my way to Sunway University College instead to attend a symposium.
It was a FUN time that I had there. FUN? Symposiums can be FUN? Yes, very much so. I truly enjoyed the sessions there. It was good organisation by the people in SUC. The first session was by Dr Moses Samuel, a UM lecturer. His address was a little dry but still informative and certainly reminds me why I never want to study in UM! Then we had the first workshop and I went to one conducted by Timothy Wong on Teacher Profile. It was about how we need to recognise our strengths and weaknesses, as well as the type of persons we are. Most importantly, I am reminded that my students too are of different types and they have their different strengths and weaknesses. Therefore I have to adjust my teaching style and lessons accordingly.
Then it was lunch. We had a good lunch, nothing too fancy but much nicer than those lunches we get during our own staff development sessions.
Next was the second workshop. As assumed by my lovely friends, I chose the one on pronunciation conducted by Hugh Leburn. He was a good presenter. We had fun pronouncing words and sentences. I am reminded of the time I took a paper in one semester during my degree programme. We used to be ever so noisy with all the sounds we tried to make according to the phonetic symbols. I am so going to email Mr Leburn one of these days!!!
Then we finished up with the plenary address by Prof Alan Maley. He is THE authority on Reading when I was studying. We had books written by him as our texts. He was a wonderful presenter and his session of 1 hour ended just too quickly. He is a very funny man and was full of anecdotes. I know what I learned from him. WE HAVE TO MOVE WITH THE TIMES. Being a teacher is not about books and board anymore (though there is absolutely nothing wrong with using books and the board). We have to explore other possibilities and other newer text types and source of information. We have to try not to lag behind and become dinosaurs in the teaching profession. I shall strive to move along with technology and all, with whatever time I have.
Spending the Saturday in a symposium might not be everyone's idea of a good time, but it was a break from the routine. And it was a good learning experience. I certainly feel refreshed about my teaching job. Most of all, being there with my buddies made it all the more enjoyable.

Today I went for a brief visit to UPM for their Dogathon. Last year I was there too, but much longer. Today was just a quick HI and BYE visit. The crowd is much bigger this year. There were many people with many dogs and many stalls that sold doggie things as well as having exhibition. We took the kids there just for a look-see. Then we went for a quick lunch and came home.
Jonathan is unwell. He has had a fever since yesterday morning. He was still very active and all until tonight. I guess it's taking its toll on him and he looked weary by dinner time. Hopefully he is going to recover soon. He's not going to school tomorrow.

So tomorrow is a school day. I was going to sigh, but I told myself NO! Instead I am going to remember what Pastor Peter Tsukahira said today. Sunday is a day of rest. Monday is the beginning of what I am supposed to do. So I shall look forward to tomorrow and do the best that I can.

Monday, August 10, 2009

My new dog

Just got him half an hour or so ago. So this is HOT news. LOL. Well, he is a brown coloured golden retriever aged about 2 years. My son, Jeremy, says to name him Dusty. The kids have not seen him yet. Haha. Oh well, we shall see how things work out.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

TESL 93 reunion

Met up with my TESL coursemates today for Hi tea at Equatorial, Bangi. Here are the photos, courtesy of Shazreen. Sitting between Dr Fauziah and Aida. Notice the other table at the back?

Posing ....

More poses


The group that met up, minus those who left early.

No, I did not kick Azlan!

Concentrating on food and Dr Fauziah's words of wisdom

The early birds, actually.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


It is a dangerous thing, starting a rumour. You can cause panic or you can destroy someone's reputation. You can even change the course of history.
I heard a few rumours the last few days. one rumour has it that Sri Aman had 4 confirmed cases of H1N1. Now how the rumour started, I have absolutely no idea. All I know is suddenly someone called up to ask if that was true. Up until this very minute, there is still no confirmed case. Who started the rumour, I am very interested to know. It is sheer irresponsibility that causes someone to start kind of rumour and turn people panicky.
Another instance of a rumour having adverse effects is the one about someone in school having someone sleeping over at her house. This causes the said someone to lose her reputation, not to mention the reputation of the other party. Now what could cause a person to start that kind of rumour? Jealousy? Envy? Or just plain meanness?

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Getting that break we have been craving!

For weeks, my buddies and I have been saying we needed a break and the end of August was kinda long to wait. I guess our wish has been granted, although not for the reason we hoped. Not that we have a reason proper. But, yeah, we have been granted a week off. School is closed for a week. No one has been confirmed to be a victim of AH1N1 yet. But many students have been having fever and flu and various other ailments. Perhaps it is just as well, and all of us get the bit of rest that we desperately need. Not that it is going to be that much of a rest but at least we get to sleep in a bit, and do some other work that have been pending.
I know I will get to spend more time with my boys. I will try to be a good mother and make them pancakes or cakes for breakfast / tea. I will prepare lunches of pasta too, if they like. I will try to take them for evening walks if the weather is good. Oh and I will complete my PMR Trial Exam paper.
On another note, the Chng is down with appendicitis and will have a surgery tomorrow. Get well soon, yeah!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

I need to get out of this rut - and I will

The last few weeks I found myself in a rut. It was not something I could do much about. I just felt down and was probably wallowing in an almost self-pity pile of mud. Then I realised something. No one else can get me out of this except myself. So I am going to hold on to the rope that has been thrown to me and I am going to pull myself out of here. This is not the kind of place I want to be for a long time. I am going to shake off the mud and I am going to clean myself up and get going with all the things that need doing.