Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Down memory lane ...Section 10 Petaling Jaya

Section 10 holds alot of memories for me.
I moved over here, as a matter of fact to Section 10, Jln.10/10F in late 1968. The May 13 tragedy occured in 1969.
There were not many incidents or clashes  between the races in this part of the  town.
But all the same we were vigilant. Curfew was still imposed  when night fell. Our community kept a watchful eye especially in and around  the lake at night. We tied white cloth bands around  our heads and equipped  with  sticks or any weaponry  we could lay our hands on.We had whistles too to blow if we saw anything suspicious lurking in the  bushes. 
There were movements in among  the trees alright  but of a different kind..lovebirds that is ..making out under the trees/bushes. The nerve  of them engaged  in a tryst and throwing  caution to the wind in a situation like this 
We trained our torchlights to warn them of imminent danger and getting the  message faded into the darkness.
I did not hear of any major skirmish  here. But occasionally i heard the wailing of ambulances and sirens of the police vehicles.
Whither they were headed i did not know. Anyway that was a close encounter during my sojourn  in this part of the city.
Anyway all's well that ended  well and i got married 2 years later in this very place.
That was one of my best moments in time staying in Section 10.

The place when i left 40 years ago then was freshly constructed with small plants transferred from the government nusery. They were no more than 4 feet high. The pond  teemed with small fish put in by the National Electricity board   every 3 months.

Fishing was allowed was a sad misjudgement. If fishing was prohibited in the first place we would now be having a beautiful pond  of aquatic life....for visitors to wonder and admire.

The trees are overgrown and in need of trimming. The whole landscape needed sprucing up.

Looks to me nothing much has been done.

People still flock to the place. But the pond stinks to high heaven. Surely there is someone who is responsible  enough to do what needs to be done. Over to you.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Great Wall of China

China has had 2 'great sorrows'  ie The Hwang Ho and The Great Wall of China.
In the days of yore The Hwang Ho used to overflow its banks, sweeping away crops, devastating land and drowning many.
The great wall was the scene of many untold misery and death. It was the brainchild of empire builder Chin Dynasty Chin Shih Wang or Shih wang Ti if you will. (247BC-212BC)
The idea of the wall originally at the northern frontier was to keep the marauding mongol hordes at bay.
He created an Empire and saw to it that it lasted.
He ruthlessly perpetuated his legacy as a great achiever, an able administrator as well.
China stays united today as a nation through his farsightedness and ingenuity.
He centralised control and removed linguistic barriers  by decreeing that a uniform language be established  throughout  the country. He had many great achievements  too but alas they were overshadowed by the  book-burning and  wall-building process that had blemished and demonised his reign. But  his legacy to future generations  has been enormous  and made a huge difference in the way  we live today. For that he has been immortalised in the  hearts of the Chinese  race...

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Spitter of a 1000 years ago

As someone just said,"That's 5000 years old culture! Seems impossible to change.
It's  an infernal habit but alas so hard to kick...otherwise it would have dimmed and dissappeared in the mist of time.
But it keeps on rearing   its ugly head to the chagrin  of passersby.
But kick we need to...for  the sake of health and hygiene.
Especially to keep rampant diseases like TB and Ebola at bay.
So try not doing it while you good folks out there are having a nice day.😊

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Beijing 21-28 Oct 2014

They say that, first impression stays and says it all.
How  true it is.

To prove my point. Bear with me. It was a quaint encounter that touches the heart. Believe you, me.

 We arrived in Beijing on 21st Oct midnight and found us ushered into the immigration checkpoint with much foreboding.

We have heard  many stories that i almost shuddered at the thought of being questioned and perhaps   even striped search. We will soon was all unfounded really. Much ado over nothing.

Moving on.....
A stetn looking but petite pretty officer went through my documents. Unsmiling..she looked up. She paused with my passport in hand.

Wondering what was amiss and  in bewilderment my eyes strayed to an electronic tablet before me.

Oh..this?? It was a rating service or Smile-O-Meters.

Well what do you do! Instinctively  i clicked on the smiley face. Hey presto..A glow lighted her face . 

I returned her sheepishly with  a wide grin exposing my teeth.
Aha..that was my 1st encounter of the best kind. 

And augered well for  my 1st ever vidit to Beijing.

It was a great beginning of my pleasant journey and meeting with the awesome  people of Beijing.

I gonna love it.So will you.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Yi Jin Jing

Ya Jin Jing
An ancient form of exercise that dates back to the Han Dynasty about 2000 years ago,
Yi Jin Jing is a prerequisite and key element for physical fitness of the Shaolin disciples even to this day.
Yi Jin Jing literally means pulling, pushing, stretching, twisting, turning and pumping muscle and tendon exercises.
It is co-ordinated with specific breathing and mental concentration.
In Chinese, Yi means "change".
Jin = "tendons and sinews" and Jing = "method".
There are 15 routine exercises. Each is repeated 10/20 times. The entire routine takes up 45 minutes to one hour 10 minutes respectively.
Relatively it is an intense form  of body and hand movement that aims at strengthening the muscles and tendons at the same time invigorating limbs and internal organs.
If practiced diligently over a period of time the practioner will feel, see and enjoy the fruits of his/her labor. It will certainly make a difference to ones wellness, vitality and energy.
Health will improve considerably in areas already mentioned.
This stringent health regiment if adhered to, will and can promote flexibility, speed,stamina, balance and mascular strength coordination of the body. Besides having a beneficial effect on the respiratory system.
Yi Jin Jing consists of 15 movements or limbering exercises which are performed, standing. They focus on tendon stretching and bone flexing, combining softness with strength.
This practice relies on the Traditional Chinese Medicine theory of 5 elements ie: wood, fire, metal, water and earth.
There is also a focus on spine turning, flexing and stimulating the nerve cords, exercising the internal organs and limbs.
There are some exotic hand postures like the Lotus Leaf palm,  willow leaf palm, Dragon Claw and Tiger paws.
The routine entails a smooth blend of gradual warming up to some very unusual twists and turns that really stretch the upper body and neck.
There is also plenty of lower limb stretching as well.
All performed in an upright position.
At all stages of the exercise, respiration movements or breathing should be natural.
This is because Yi Jin Jing involves guided movements dominated by the extreme shifting of position of alignment of tendons and bones.
The dramatic change in the movements are irregular and may hinder or disrupt the breathing process. The enforced respiration will cause dizziness for the uninitiated.
However there is no cause for alarm as it is a learning process and all will be well at the end of the day.
So exhale and inhale naturally to changes in the movement and the contraction of the thorax.
This will prevent the stifling feeling or shortness of breath brought on by the discordance between movements and respiration.
That is to say there should be harmony between limb movement and respiratory function.
It is a graceful form of exercise and when practised diligently over time one will certainly  reap the fruits of good health and vitality.
Happy stretching, pulling, pushing and twisting to robust health.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Fabian and Francis Cheah

My brother and I, 2 years apart are from Roaring Forties/ Baby Boomer Generation.
D-day June 6th was the anniversary of the Normandy Invasion of the allied forces against the Axis Alliance which also spelt the end of world war ll. Anway he was born on 6.6.1942. My birthday, 10th June 1944 has no special significance except that it was at the closing stages of the war. Contrary to popular belief about the atrocities pepertrated by the Japanese forces during the occupation my mother confided they were friendly and caring  Japanese too.
Could be because the battle  has concluded in Malaya and the combatants were replaced by administrators. The warring soldiers have left for the eastern front to fight more battles.  So it was really peacetime that we were born.
Incidentally both of us are Geminis for those who are horoscope fans. I am not an enthusiast though I did refer to it during my growing years.
Believe it or not I found  the Gemini traits in me and my the characteristics of a Geminian. Need I say more? Both of my sons are Geminians too. 

We grew up in extreme poverty.....we were rich once but that  was before our time. Grandfather was a famous and rich contractor in town. He had 2 sons and a daughter.However after his death the eldest son squandered the family fortune. My father the youngest was left with a bungalow. He sold it to start a sawmill but that went kaput too. We had to rent out the premises to make ends meet. We rented to a coffin maker. Yes coffin hewn out of a tree. My brother and I have slept in coffins before. Red and brown ones. Sounds morbid. But that was our playground. We were 12 and 14 years old.

Swimming was our hobby.Hardly surprising as the meandering perak river is just behind our door.Almost every day at high tide would find us frolicking in it

My Bro was a strong swimmer. The perak river was about 1000 meter wide.  He attempted to swim across and almost got swept away if not  for friends who threw him a line. 

He once dived into the raging river in between boats with engines running and sharp propellers churning up water and steam. Why? Just to retrieve a durian that have fallen in. Wewrre passing the fruits from boats to baskets at the jetty.

He was athe gungho type like the shenanigans.  Had many close calls and close shaves in his life. He fell from a tree and walk away from it.unscath.Standing on a tree branch about 15 feet high when It broke under his weight. But it floated down instead because of its leaves. 

He dived into a one foot deep pond thinking it eas deep and escaped with a bump. 

He crashed his BSA motorcycle into the bentong river. A hanging tree branch broke his fall but a branch pireced his lips. His bike broke in two.

 He school..sometimes he won ...sometimes he lost. But he was my brother....never back down from any trouble.

But the worst case scenario was his biggest bout with cancer...leukaemia.  Doctors Gave him 3 months.He was determined to was during this time that he found God and found his life back. That was 22 years ago. God be praised.

The river was full of crocs too. But fear was furthest from our minds.we heard of stories of people being snatched away.

Funny thing the only fear we had was drowning. We have friends missing while swimming only to be found 5 days later entangled at tree roots or branches 5 miles upstream.

Like tarzan we could swim. During the duruan season we would be seen helping unload them from heavily laden sampans from the interior. For every big ratan basket filled with approx.50 fruits we were awarded one big fruit.

One incident while passing up the fell into the churning waters created by moyor boats. Without any 2nd thought my bro dived in to retrieve it. He could easily have been dragged and cut into smithereens by the boat propellers. 

Those were the brother and spent our young days living out the life of Tom Sawyer and Hukleberry fin by Mark Twain. 

We spent much if our growing years living in the wild of rubber estate and secondary jungle. 

It was a rough and tumble from hand to mouth. Rice was just crumbs from left overs. Eating rice mixed with kopi o. Vegetable was paku or kungkung from mosoon drains. Soup was from a stand pipe.

Raw unions and garlic and salt were vege to us. Living on red cross ration...only because my sister was a member.

Things got better when sister came home from England...1959.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Colossus of Imperial Rome

Touted as one of the 7 wonders of the world and one of the greatest works of Roman architecture and engineering.
It is also known as the Flavian Amphitheatre located in the city of Rome.
This magnificent iconic symbol still stands strong today.
Built by Emperor Vespasian in 70AD and completed by successor Titus in 80AD.
Having said that...Now the burning question is...were Christians really martyred ie fed to the lions in the arena watched a capacity crowd of 55000 people in ancient times?
History tells us that Titus on the occasion of its opening in 80AD held games for 100 days and nights. 5000 animals were slaughtered and roasted  and feasted on during the marathon celebrations.Trajan, successor to Titus held a 117-day killing spree involving 9,000 gladiators and 10,000 animals.
No where in the history annals were there any mention of Christian persecution at that time in history much less about them being being thrown and devoured by beasts in the arena.
Besides the Emperors who built the colossal colosseum were Christians themselves. Give it a thought.