Last Saturday, I lost my grandma who has been battling Alzheimer since her 70s. A fighter, this woman fought her last battle in her 82 year.

Growing up, Pati spoilt us silly, us grandkids with anything we desired be it a radio or walkman. Staying in the same town we received more gifts, trips to town, the playground and weekends/ school holidays spent being pampered.

We knew the day would come. Yet somehow I felt that she would always be there, she would always be around. It did not seem possible to have a life without her in it.

Yet that day has come. Armed with memories of her dancing to the Lambada, giving and receiving kisses, being subjected to her interrogation about boyfriends, about traditional remedies or just listening to her stories, I’m left here, feeling empty-feeling lost.

How do you deal with the loss even when they are old? Even when you know its their time. Knowing you will never ever lay your eyes on them again.

How do you?

Pati, on the 7th day I finally feel .

You are leaving us for good to be with him….

Yet it still hurts…. But I’m glad to finally let go. It’s hard holding back and trying to be strong..

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On the way to work and back, on the way to groceries and back, on the way to practically anywhere, the sight is similar. The last few weeks, we all have been subjected to the eyesore that they call campaigning.

With flags, banners and picket cards line-up at your local barber shop, that favorite playground, the beautiful open landing, defaming ads in the newspapers,wherever you can imagine, they have it plastered reminding you that the time is now. It’s all dominated by the colors of blue, green and red, it is a wonder any of us can recognize any other color moving forward.

It does not end there either, even our personal lives are invaded. With manifestos arriving in our mail, SMS-es taking up space in our inbox to video-MMs-es defaming one party over another- the harassment by these parties are endless. To make matters worse, social media has exploded with the sharing of racist youtube videos, blog postings and images inciting nothing worth mentioning most of the time. As usual of course there is the coffee shop talk, where you see the uncles discussing politics over their morning coffee and newspapers (although the newspapers are hardly seen much these days). One thing that differs I guess is that you can easily see youngsters taking heed of the elections, you can see them taking an active role, an active part actually discussing of what is and what will be.

56 years and counting, nothing much has changed in terms of the sights and sounds as election looms near. There is the same ole talk. Same ole propaganda passing around, same ole promises. So what is so different about these upcoming elections that keeps me cringing?  Elections, politics- basically anything equating to those two words are often dirty, what makes this any different?

For a country that has been dominated by a single party made of up component parties (only for election purposes of course), time is changing and tensions are running high. What used to be a walk in the part for this party has truly become a race(no we are not talking about Indians, Malays or Chinese), a battle of the titans. It is no longer assumed or expected that they will win as they always have and then in it creates a whole lot of chain reactions.

Why in the first place can a single party or individual be allowed to rule for such a long period of time? Well, that requires an analysis of the political system that we are apart of that I will not be discussing. It is what it is.

This elections in fact is the dirtiest ever. They say 1Malaysia but is is merely a propaganda tool for they still use…race.. Races. Yes races are used as a pre-requisite to demand, to incite, to hurt and to insinuate nothing good. The words you keep hearing is I,My …..repeated over and over again. It is us against the world sort of situation. We don’t really see campaigning do we? We see defamation at every possible level. We see hate campaigns. Why do we allow it? Why do we allow people to campaign and trample another’s image and dignity as a basis for us to defend the worthiness of a party.

If a party is defined by how bad/unethical another party is, well I have to say your party is baseless and has no stand indeed. Also I believe there is no purpose of defaming another to look good- that is like every custody case in the country. If I have to choose to vote base on who is worse, that is truly sad.

Gosh look at the ads in the newspapers below;

dap silent dap

It does not end there either. We hear words constantly repeating about how we the Indians and Chinese are Pendatangs and we should go back to our own countries. It’s weird they didn’t feel that way when we contribute our salaries, business etc to the economy nor do they have such sentiments during non-elections. Oh come on, its pretty obvious. You are using race to define the General Election as a way to win. What better way to fuel people’s emotions? Religion of course. Race of course. That’s how you get people to get ticked off, to get angry, to get pissed, to fear the unknown  and to vote in anger and fear.

They don’t care how it goes down. They only care that it does in their way. To fill their pockets with money and power. You think they care about you at all? Think again. Once they are in power, your wants and their promises become a distant memory. So before it become another term of them deciding what happens to you, why not you show them who is in power. Show them that the people matter. Show them that they are working for us like how we work for our companies. They are in power because we wanted them to not because they are god almighty.

So when you place your vote this Sunday.

Think. Think. Think

What do you want for yourself, for your children, for your country?

“Our masters have not heard the people’s voice for generations and it is much, much louder than they care to remember.”
― Alan MooreV for Vendetta

Do you want to live in fear? Do you want to live knowing that those who are in power will blackmail you at anytime if you do not sing to their tune?

Let us remind them who is in power. Let us remind them that we are not indeed afraid of them. Any government that will rule regardless of party.

“People shouldn’t be afraid of their government. Governments should be afraid of their people.”
― Alan MooreV for Vendetta

We need them to realise that so we can truly be free. We need to send a strong message this elections .That the citizens rule. Time and time again we will need to remind them at each elections be it the opposition or the Barisan Nasional.  So break out of your prisons that hold you captive and make an educated choice.

The time is now. Vote wisely.

-An Entry on HighStage Marketing Perodua Service Centre In Teluk Intan- Unethical Behavior

On the 4th of July 2012, I drove back to Teluk Intan from my home in Kuala Lumpur, I felt something was not right with my brakes as it made some sounds (this was not the first time I have heard those sounds). The first time I heard them was basically right after Perodua Service Centre in Teluk Intan claimed to have changed my brake pads to new ones.  I did come back to the centre and there was no more noise at that point of time. But from time to time after that I kept hearing these noises, I even called the centre and mentioned this over the phone.  On the 5th of July 2012, I used the car around town and there was a loud screeching sound every time I used my brakes- I got very worried, the next day I went to the service centre.

I was informed that my brake pads was completely used and needed to be changed. I had already changed my brake pads when my car hit the mileage of 31,000km in September last year and found it very strange that my brake pads could wear out so fast. I told them it was impossible for such a thing to occur unless they had not changed my brake pads during that service.  My mileage is currently only 44,000km.

Upon checking, it was certain that the pads were definitely not one that had been changed-they had basically just cleaned it and ensured it did not make noise despite charging me for new brake pads. I was rather annoyed but was just glad that I had found out and something could be done.

I was advised to change it and agreed but I told them I would not pay for it again. They said they would change the brake pads for me nevertheless. The service advisor [Mr.  Liew Sei Lek   ] came by the service area, looked at the pads and disappeared-he did not say a word to me which I found was very rude. When I returned to the counter, the lady [Ms.  Vindra ] informed me that they would changed new brake pads for me. I was quite delighted about the news.

For some reason I felt uncomfortable and went back to the service area. I saw a used brake pad near my car and asked the mechanic if that was the brake pad to be fixed for my car, he nodded and said he was told to fix that. I commented that it was not new, he agreed.

I took the part and when to the spare part area/store and asked one of the ladies who was there concerning this, she said that was definitely not new- it was a display piece [I found it funny that a display piece was used- I wonder if their display cars are also second-hand?]

She said she would find out went back into the office and apparently was unhappy because I was causing trouble. At that point, I was pretty pissed that I was treated in such a manner- just because I was an Indian women on my own. I might not be a genius when it comes to cars but I’m nobody’s fool.

The service advisor re-appeared and told me it was courtesy for them to even consider changing my brake pads because it was not their fault and brake pads had no warranty. He also told me that brake pads only last about 30,000 km in terms of mileage, and mine had about 17,000 left. He also said that it must be the way I pressed on my brakes- that was the only reason it was worn out. I reverted by telling him this was not my first car and I knew better. He said what he could do instead is put back this old pads and ensure there was no noise.  I insisted he changed it and walked back to my car.

Moments later he came back to me after seeing me make a few phone calls with a different story altogether. There was also a Malay guy- named Yasir from Perodua HQ who was there, he insisted that the service advisor was doing me a big favour. It wasn’t his fault, he could not monitor everything- even if one of his staff did not actually change the brake pads he would not know. They had no service of who did what to whose car and since it was so long ago, it would be impossible to track [I do know for a fact that there is a customer history and I knew that a Chinese guy-the mechanic named Mr.Ho serviced my car during the break pad change- he has since resigned]. He was not always there to monitor, he could not be on top of everything- he insisted over and over again it was not his fault and that’s why customer feedback like mine was essential. He said out of courtesy he would change new pads for me [something he promised much earlier of course before I found him giving me old parts instead]

Through an inside source, I have reason to believe this is not an isolated incident. This is not the first time they have cheated people of parts or their service. It’s not just about buying something or replacing something, we are talking about lives. Faulty or non-functioning brake pads can cause lost lives, it is no joking matter. God knows how many accidents on the roads can be contributed to service centres like this.

I have been visiting this centre since I bought my car in 2009, I wonder what else I have missed or was not aware of- I’m deeply disappointed and worse still I feel very afraid for those people who have no voice-people who have no idea they are being cheated constantly. Being a small town like Teluk Intan, I never expected this would occur-small town people belief but it did and I will never return to this centre. I urged you to share this matter with everyone you know to push for an investigation to be made on this centre. If you have any information or share similar experiences with this centre please leave a comment here and contact me.

A copy of this will be sent to a couple of organization namely

PERODUA HQ,

PERODUA SERVICE CENTRE TELUK INTAN

CONSUMER ASSOCIATION

for now…

Psalms 31:9 

O’ Lord have mercy on me in my anguish. My eyes are red from weeping;
my health is broken from sorrow.

Those of us who have lost someone dear to us, be it a parent, a sibling, a good friend or even a relative can understand this-all too well…

When you weep till you have no more tears.

When you try to speak but are left with no voice.

When your heart aches as though someone has punctured your soul and left a knife in it.

When you feel that nothing anyone says can make it better… can make it go away.

When you feel like no one- no one truly understand how you feel, how you ache?

How you would take that person’s place in a heart-beat- if only.

It’s hard to even imagine a day without that person, let alone eternity. Yet, the truth being that it has happened You have no control over it- you wish you did. But the fact is that nothing anyone says or does can bring that person back.

So I’ll  pray that you have the strength to carry on, for the will to live through everyday-the  knowledge that he is safe within the arms of the Lord

He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and buckler.
Psalm 91:4

I pray that you find peace within this chaos. I pray that he will take you under his wing and shield you from the pain that overwhelms your soul. I know Glen will be there to greet him, to take care of him as you have taken care of me…

He has said, I will never leave you, nor forsake you.
Hebrews 13:5

You love someone, you open yourself up to suffering, that’s the truth. Maybe they’ll break your heart, maybe you’ll break their heart and never be able to look at yourself in the same way. Those are the risks. That is the burden.

Like wings, they have weight, we feel that weight on our backs but they are a burden that lifts us. A burden that allows us to fly.

 

 

 

Excerpt: S.4:26 Bones

Inspired by Diana Owen’s blog posting[http://diane-owens.com/2012/06/16/day-152-question-152/] on this question, I’d like to take a swing at it from my p.o.v.

This strength that we are supposed to conjure up to save us from life, from daily struggles, from turbulence?

Reflecting on her question[ What was the last experience that made you a stronger person? ] has brought me to question the exact same thing. What has made me stronger?

I think to be honest, I do not think one particular experience can indeed make you stronger, it is possible that a base experience could provide the path for many other experiences to take form  into becoming something that indeed serves to keep a person stronger-sane I’d like to call it. To say that one(uno) experience actually causes this would be mere fallacy but I do believe that it could begin there, could be the starting point. Then again, I guess we all look at the world from a different point of view, so..

Back to the question: What was the last experience that made you a stronger person?

I guess for me there is only one, one that I hold on to with dear life. One that serves as that point, where I go nothing ….can be worse than this[ i will survive] Nothing at all. It serves as a great reminder to all things that occur around me[ but also serves to put a stopp.  To those who know me well, there would know that this experience would be the one in which I lost someone very close to my heart when I was 16.

Losing someone close you heart is like losing apart of yourself. Apart you possibly never knew existed, let alone was growing in you all along. When you do lose that someone, all sorts of feelings and emotions start appearing. Things you have never felt, things that normally meant nothing or could not move you to react among others. The thing about this sort of experience is that it changes you, for good? for worse? I do not know, all I know is as a result you become stronger, you become like a brick wall like the great wall of china sorta strength [really? yes really].

Now most would consider that as something negative to build up walls in that manner, but it kind of protects you, shields you. In turn it also feels you with something an amplified version of feelings be it positive or negative. It could be extreme paranoia, fear, desire, wants, needs, happiness among others. It is something hard to really tell what indeed is going on in a person’s mind to actually get to where she or he is.

But the answer to this question is like a double-edge sword, cause as much as it protects you, it also makes you just as vulnerable. Your experience also defines you, builds you to become who you are, sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse.

Strength can serve you well if used correctly, but wrongly can leave scars that forever remains. So you might be stronger than you think, but are you really strong? [yes, I can be very complicated, I barely comprehend myself sometimes :)]

Who likes racist? None of us do. Who likes people who are ethnocentric? I doubt any of us do.

I mean who would like a person who blatantly disregards another human being on their barring of race, religion, culture or anything else. But let’s be real honest here. Let’s be direct, let’s not put icing on the matter shall we?

Before you attempt to read this post, read it with an open mind. Keep emotions out of it. For this post is not a post one can read on an empty stomach, that’s for sure nor read when emotions are in high tide.

The Anti Presana Narayanan Wave

Who is this woman? Why is everyone placing such an importance towards this person? What sort of media coverage has this sole person attracted?

Has she done any good to society? Perhaps won an award? Perhaps she is a missing child?

Nope.nope.nope. She is now a famous character not only over Facebook or in the mainstream media in Malaysia and some say overseas but among the Tamils or would it be accurate to say the Indians- she has become the talk of the town.

Presana Narayana- an Indian female model, in her 30s who recently became a household name after making racist statement about Tamils on her Facebook wall through her idiotic status. According to valid sources, this is not a first time offence so to speak, she has previously made such strong racist statements on a Malayleee Youth Group on Yahoo via email to other members. I shall not disclose the content of that email nor the status message she posted up. Rather, I want to address somethings, least we forget.

Just a few facts I would agree on before heading down that road.

Yes, the woman is racist- no doubt about that.

Yes, she has to understand that she cannot be allowed to speak in such a tone about anyone be it about Tamils or anyone really.

Yes, she should be taught a lesson (which I think she has)

Yes, her excuses for such an outburst is not only lame, but ridiculous silly [which one of us have not been whistled at or disturbed by our fellow Indians in the community (regardless whether they are tamils, malaylees, telugus etc)

Below,  what the community has done about it;

  1. Opened up a Facebook page called Anti Presana Narayanan which has 11,555 likes which was opened on the 21st of May 2012, barely a week ago.
  2. Raised the issue up to mainstream press where Malay Mail covered the story.

The reactions of people?

The bulk of them hatred =with comments on wanting to rape the girl, hurt her family among other hateful things.

I mean get your head on straight, if you are indeed anti-racism,you would first not start a page on a person, specifically targeted a single human-being, fine if your intentions was to actually get the issue out fine, but why still continue is my question?

If the issue is indeed about her actions or her words? Why swing below the belt and talk about how skinny she is or what her face looks like or how you think she would fare in the sack?

Are you just having an adrenaline rush by being part of this wave? Are you truly understanding the meaning of anti-racism? No point claiming to be anti-racist when your pro-hatred, don’t you think?

Come one, like I have mentioned before ,none of us are saints. Especially in Malaysia, there is a slang/special words used for every race from the Chinese to the Indians, Malays and other races. If you have never said anything bordering on racist fine, but I doubt anyone of you are  a saint.

Racism is ugly. Coming from a mixed marriage I understand this better than most. I know how it feels to be labeled by your race, religion etc. What is uglier is hatred, what is uglier is people getting together under the guise of unity of anti-racism but instead or targeted a single human being with acts of hatred.

I do not agree with what she said, how she said it, why she said – frankly speaking I think no attention should have been given to this women. She is not worth even talking about yet here we all are debating about her, talking about her and worse still being ugly because of her.

What makes you and her different? If you are just as ugly..You might not be throwing out racial slurs but hatred?

And you think you are taking the high road? Think again.

If only we cared as much about other things like how corrupt our systems are or how children go missing everyday, if we put as much effort towards all the other issues that really mattered, as much as we did for this particular person, wow- how great life would be.

But, oh well people will be people. Do think about what you are doing and what you are saying. Karma can be a bitch, the question is are you really certain that god will only punish Presana Narayanan, cause the way things are going look likes tens of thousand of people are dangerously drawing close to being , if not just as bad, but worse than all the things she says or is doing.

God bless us all.

This is going to be a short post [yes I do know what that means].

I had major issues the first year I came to live in Kuala Lumpur mixing a little too much with certain quarters. Let’s say it got ugly and leave it at that. But that is not what this post is about, it’s about that gel that holds everything together even though at times, I do feel I should do away with family ties altogether due to the constant drama [yes every family has it I know :P].

What is it that holds everything together? Cousins.

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No matter what, no matter when, no matter how- we somehow always ensured that we were OK. We always ensured that our relationship flourished, it grew-regardless. Although I don’t see my cousins much, as much as I would like too, I know deep inside we all know that we can rely on each other when it does matter. I know that I can rely on them, that they won’t let anything affect us being family.

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                                If nothing else, I’m blessed to have my cousins.

p.s- to da cousins yg tak der gambar jgn marah yer, tht’s all I could find-most picture ripped off cousin punya FB walls!

With all the drama going-on with families these days [mine-included], it makes you kind of wonder about what is really happening around you. It really makes you think of things way ahead of your time. It makes you question, what would you do.

The thing is when such a thing appears to me, be it in my mind, through a conversation or even when I see the realities occurring right in front of me- the answer is always the same and it always will be. There will be no question of economics, comfort, convenience or any such thing because like the post says, it is a given! There should be no question at all.

What am I rambling about? Parents.

As I see my grandparents getting older (hitting their 80s and older) I see all the squabbles, the hesitance of their children in taking care of their own parents and it makes me really sad. I mean imagine years from now, you too will be in that position. I just can’t fathom how anyone can even consider, even for a moment whether they should or should not take care of their parents.

Imagine if your parents thought that about you too. Now that would be real COOL don’t you think. Nah, my daughter is crying too much, my son shits too much…she started writing on the walls again, she keeps asking me questions and bugging me. If our parents threw us out then, we would not be where we are. 

Now, don’t get on your high horse and tell me it is different. Frankly speaking, it is not. When your parents reach that age, they will fall back into that cycle, they will become kids again. The question is will you care for them, as they cared for you?

For me, it is a given. Should it not be for you too?

 

Since Mother’s Day is tomorrow, today’s post will be on the top 10 things I would like to cultivate from my mum. Some are things that require time and effort, some are things that take years to build, some are things that might never be learned, some are things that comes with time and maturity- but all of these are skills I’d love to have if not today, one day.

So the top 10 are :) Drum roll please!

1. Courage

2. Intelligence

3. Awesome cooking skills- mum says it comes with a lot of practice and passion.

4. Ability to forgive- mum is like a durian [appears to be very hard on the outside but super mushy inside-forgives so easily]

5.  Grounded

6.  Resourceful

7. Persuasive

8. Run a household

9. Tend to a garden

10. Be as close as she is…. to my daughter/son [if lah]