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Friday, September 12, 2008

16th September, a date to ponder

I was reading a friend's blog and it striked me about this date: 16th September, the Malaysia Day. It's one day that the politicians fight over whether to make it as a holiday or not(link 1/ link 2).

It is a very important day for it was D-Day when we Sabahans (of course I wasnt born yet) & fellow Sarawakians joined the Malayans to established a new federation: M-A-L-A-Y-S-I-A. Well, 45 years has passed, like in Susan's blog, how much progress have we made??

30 years ago, I remembered our 'dreadful' trip to Kuala Penyu visiting the grandparents. It was during our school holidays, poor dad had to put up with our laments, cries, whines for not wanting to stay at Ingkung Bundu (as we fondly called our grandpa. He lived in Kg Gana, Bundu)'s house for more than 2 nights. The shorter the trip the better. It wasnt that we were kurang ajar (illmannered) towards the elderly, but it was the condition of the place that we just couldnt stand.

First reason was the gravel, sandy road to KP. We had to wind up our car windows everytime there're cars overtook ours, or came from the opposite direction as it would cause the sand to stir up and went into our car. Air-conditioned cars were quite rare then. Rainy season would create puddles of mud, we'd be glad if we didnt get stuck in any of them. Journey to the kampung would take 2 hours if it didnt rain. The, the road into my ingkung's house, we have to go in to the jungle, up on a hilly area where those days, road were so slopey and bad that even a 4WD would have a hard time going up when it was pouring rain. At times, we had to get down from dad's car and walked up the hill under the rain so the tyres would not get buried in the mud.

Second reason, there werent any luxury, only bare necessities which depend on the generousity of Mother Earth. Public bathing at the well (I didnt have a problem until I grew up..geezz), down hill into the bushes near Ingkung's house. I swear I can get lost if I go by my self. Drinking water source was either from the well or the rain water.. It tasted horrible that we brought our own water from home. There wasnt any water pipe back then.
[added: I was on the phone with my cuz, he told me that even they have water pipes,but there are times that no water flowing in for weeks.. Too bad!]

Talk about cleanliness, there wasnt any proper sewege management.. The toilet was located 100m from the house, a place that you wouldnt want to visit at night. And while doing big business, the chickens and hogs were partying underneath.. if you know what I mean.. So, to prevent from using that toilet, we practically 'download' at home before going to KP.

No electricity, meaning that we had limited lightings at night.. Dad bought coloured TV for ingkung & nenek but it didnt work with the car battery, so Dad had to exchanged it to B&W and that worked fine. But who needs TV when we kids had fun activities as go to the corner of the house and started to tell some ghost stories or playing tapuk-tapuk (hide-and-seek). Good thing that Dad often made sure our cousins would be there too before us, so that we appreciated the trip (It was more like a bribery... Go to Bundu and you'd meet the cousins.. hahaha). Hmm... come to think about it, those trips werent so bad after all.. apart from what I had mentioned above.. but that's another story..

Our recent trip to KP for cousin's wedding. During our way home, we decided to try out the Ferry service from KP town to Kg.Binsulok, Membakut; but we got stranded for an hour due to the queue and the wrong timing as we arrived at 3.30pm, i.e. the ferry's rest.


Say Peace, while waiting for the Ferry. Lil c sneaked out from his carseat


Imagine, few years back.. yeap.. after 35-40 years of independant, only then the KP people, or I shall narrow it to my grandparents house was upgraded to better facilities. Too bad they were not around to enjoy them.

Things do progress, but I wonder does it really have to take 4 decades after independant for a development? The Sabahans who voted for Independence in 1963, many of them didnt manage to taste the better life that was promised to them, just like the fate of my grandparents.. In fact, it is very painful to know there are places in the rural area today still in extreme poverty and poor transportation...

I wondered what happened to the Sabah Baru Manifesto in 1994 where it promise to reduce Sabah's poverty level to zero in 2000?

Anyways, Happy Malaysia Day in Advance!

3 comments:

Fiona said...

My dad cakap kan last time waktu masih si Georgie saturang they have to go up perahu from Klias-Bundu bah.Water supply? Sia rasa sampai skrg durang belum ada paip sana tu .. only certain area saja ..the rest still harap tu lori angkat air punya,silap2 yg di ulu2 tu masih harap air perigi ..Sia ingat lagi dulu kami adik beradik selalu kasih jatuh tu gayung dlm perigi bah... selalu kami balik misti kena diarrhea. Wah sia lama sudah tidak ikut tu feri since itu jln Bft-Bundu kena bikin sudah.Wah ..those were the days ..I wonder what is the KP MP doing? No diff at all ....

ArMs said...

I'm proud to be a Malaysian! and bersyukur betul... just watch the news then any msian should be thankful for what we have;)

"...promise to reduce Sabah's poverty level to zero in 2000..." - Haaha no way la they do like that. It's up to the people of Sabah sendiri juga if want to make a difference. Government cakap ja (haaha macam anti-G this keeke).

karulann said...

Hehe... Joan, the "Sabah Baru Manifesto" is only the empty promise of Bad-awi and Musa crony only... That's why I'm surprised that lot's of Sabahan still vote for them during the last GE...

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