Upon arrival there was already a swarm of people flooding the registration corner. I made my way to the UWA booth, registered my name, and the person in charge gave me three things in return. Everyone else got the three things as well.
The Malaysian Flag
They must have thought we, students who study overseas may have forgotten how Malaysian flags look like. So they gave FREE mini flags away to remind us of our country flags look like, in hope that we will remember it while living our lives here outside Malaysia.
The event booklet
When I was handed the booklet, all I can think was, darn it !! Why this booklet is made of such cheap materials? Blue lousy paper with printed black ink... Wah lau, so inappropriate for an event of such status.
Inside the booklet, there it is, the printed lyrics of the national anthem. Gosh, I was wondering when was the last time I actually stood still like a rock and sang that anthem. I believe it was years back when I was in secondary years (2001), with the weekly school assembly at the hall, when every student were
forced required to sing "Negaraku". How many years has it been since I have not seen or heard of that anthem?
A mysterious envelope
At first I seriously had no idea what was inside the envelope, and whatever documents or sheets of information given to us can be just in plain papers. However... there was a piece of blue looking paper inside...
Yiippieee... Mr Money Cash !!! AUD10. Am I supposed to be happy receiving AUD10?? I was thinking to myself, the bus that directly services from the hotel to my place in Nedlands should not be running after 6.00pm, and I might need to take a cab home later. Pardon me for being calculative, but AUD10 was just not enough for my cab fare. Come on, what can anyone do with just 10 bucks? Go have a Value Meal in KFC ??
And so I went in the hall, and found myself a table somewhere in the middle. The hall was already packing up with people, and unfortunately, the number of chairs and tables available could not accomodate everyone present. I estimated 20-30 people standing at the back for almost one hour before more chairs were provided to the audience. Well, a typical Malaysia event don't you think? After all, Pak Lah is our star and hero, be it hail-storm or fire-storm, people will still make it just to see Pak Lah. That is a true spririt of a real Malaysian
which I find myself seriously lacking of
The entire event listing was rather formal and straightforward. The arrival of the Prime MInister, the "inspiring, uplifting, influencial and one million dollar worth" speech from the Prime Minister, followed by question and answer sessions open to the hall. I must admit though, I find the speech from Pak Lah rather calm, relaxing and peaceful. That clearly reflects the nature of person he is, I believe and portrays his sincere and genuine intentions in speaking the words. He has this "I am a good man, I am an honest man, I speak for peace, I have good intentions" kind of tone that flows smoothly throughout the
lenghty standard one hour speech. I admire that quality in him. A different approach than conventional fight fire with fire and offensive styles.
I shall quote a small bit of a memorable piece I learned from Pak Lah's speech. "Patah, tumbuh, hilang, diganti". The phrase is in Malay Language, which can be translated as "broken, but regrown, gone, but replaced". Well, it may not sound that appropriate after my 50 cents worth of translation effort, but hey, the message is clear. We need progress in whatever we do in our lives, Whatever that is broken or lost, must be fixed or replaced in order to move not only onwards, but upwards. That is one rather significant rule of thumb for success.
And of course, the moment EVERYONE has been waiting for, the FOOD. We were sitting down comfortably in the hall, but to my surprise, the food was NOT served in the hall. There was a buffet style table setup just outside the hall, and we have to walk our huge heavy asses out the room, line up with hundeds of other hungry vultures, just for the food.
Just look at the lines !!
And yeah baby, my plate full of goodies.
And the best part of all, Pak Lah was only one table away from me !!! I was less than 10 Meters away from him !! Ok ok, I know I sound overly excited here.. but hey... a boy has a right to be happy, has he not?
There was the photography session. I was seriously hoping to get a one on one photo shot with Pak Lah, but I guess that dream was just too sweet to be true. All we had were group photos, whats worse, categorised by universities. Yeah, imagine me sardined into a frame of photo together with hundreds of faces I have never seen before. There were like dozens of cameras lining up the front for the shoot. I just could not find a way for my camera to get in line. Sadness.
I met up with quite a number of people, mostly from other universities. Unfortunately, I did not have the chance to take pictures with everyone.
Here is the lovely Lorinda from Notre Dame. She is currently doing her final year, just like me !!! She knows not of Malay language, and for her to survive more than one hour of blurness while Pak Lah was delivering his "meaningful" speech, I truly admire her !!! Of course, she has a blog too !!! Wooo-hooo.. another blogger on my list.
And finally, here is the gorgeous Charmaine, aka Cynical-Idealist, the blogger whom also from Kuching, and studying in Perth, just like me and Kenny Sia !!! Thank you so much for informing me about this particular event Char !!! I trully appreciate it. Yeah, without her, I might never even see Pak Lah in person for the rest of my pathetic life. I owe you one Char !! You guys out there, check out her blog !! She has some good reads there.
So to all Malaysians especially the people in Sarawak, do keep an eye open for the local newspapers
no more tribune, sadness who knows, possibly you may turn into a page with the group photos of Pak Lah with UWA students, and go find yourself a magnifying glass to zoom in the image and view the angelic and full of pimples face of yours truly !!!