Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Zhang Jia Jie 张家界 - The real deal

3 Yawns
People say picture speaks a thousand words and its true. I have no other words to describe the magnificent views in Zhangjiajie except that the cable cars were crazy. Whoever built it were crazy! How on earth did they managed it?! Its crazy I tell you. The ride was fantastic blessed with superb views. I was totally awed.....until now. 

I was telling my cousin that I pity those who has to go up the hill via this road. Doesn't it look worse than the ones at 'Tokyo Drift'? But you know what? We got a taste of this road when travelling to Tian Men San 天门山. Wasn't as scary as I thought. Phewwwwww....And the bus drivers were good. 

Another crazy road. *white on earth did they make that road??

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Zhang Jia Jie 张家界 - Travelling

0 Yawns

1st day of travel consist of 2 1/2 hours flight from Kota Kinabalu to Shenzhen, 2 1/2 hours bus ride from Shenzhen to Guangzhou and 2 hours train ride from Guangzhou to Changsha, Hunan. Basically whole day of travelling. 

2-3rd day - traveled from Changsha to Shaoshan, Chairman Mao Zedong's hometown. Visited his childhood home and Mao Zedong's square. After that was 7+ hours bus ride to FengHuang. 7 HOURS...please take note. I slept, woke up, slept and woke up..slept again and woke up and it was still 3.30 pm in the afternoon and the bus was still running. Everybody's head were dangling from the sideways. Caught some drooling..nah..LOL I was sitting behind so the most I could see was people's hair turned into a 鸡公头 (rooster head)After hours of 'fishing' in the bus finally we get to see FengHuang Ancient City. It was awesome and totally worth the 7 hours ride - at the same time was drop dead tired. 

Ah..let me show you something..

The megalong queues (sometimes lasted to close to about 30 minutes) we had to endure when entering tourist spots. China internal tourism is crazy. These people love cutting queues and pushing around. Now, it's not just the Chinese who are doing this. The Korean aunties are 2x5. Malaysians are too small sized to do anything. >.< Plus, our voices added up together are not as loud any ONE of them. Serious.

This is the scenic view in front of Chairman Mao's childhood home. It's so beautiful that I don't even feel like leaving. If only his old home is up for sale. :-P

Me and my cousin

The tour group at Mao Zedong's square. Try spotting youngster... :-P

Geese at a restaurant at FengHuang Ancient City. Hmhmhm...might have ended up in someone's plate by now. >.<

Vats of tasty wine. By the way, the alcohol content of the wine made by Tujia's are quite high. Approx 50-60% which is higher than your regular whisky. Gulp at one go and it burns like mad, though the smell is really good.

Map of FengHuang Ancient City. I was informed that there were 3 or 4 streets and a river. They even have bars (yes!) which is kinda cool. Someday I would love to stay for few nights to enjoy the village clubbing scene. Just picture ancient Chinese building with modern Chinese songs. Shopping at FengHuang is a must. In fact I regretted not buying some of the items there. Sigh..should I really make that 7 hours trip there in the future??

Houses built on stilts facing Tujiang (the river). The boats are for hired accompanied by famous Tujia folk songs (Tujia folks love to sing).

Another ancient city of Furong.

After Furong, we headed to Zhangjiajie.

Zhang Jia Jie 张家界, Hunan Province

0 Yawns

I just came back from this place and before I forget my most memorable experience there, I think I should blog about it. While gathering my thoughts, I shall post this picture as a preview to what is upcoming.

Friday, 15 October 2010

Illustrated history of mankind

3 Yawns
Warning: PG18
Found this really cool photo while I was surfing. .

Monday, 4 October 2010

Why I think is Namewee just an internet phenomenon (and not superstar)

2 Yawns
Alright, I don't know if he did aim to be a superstar but who cares, huh. This guy undeniably got talents but a misused talent I must say. He has the right voice but LOUSIEST lyrics (except for Negarakuku which is rather phenomenal).

Today I watched his latest video: 

The nice opening melody is totally spoilt by the frequent *toot toot self censorship and meaningless lyrics. I expected something better. :-(

From the look of his Facebook page, it seems that a lot of younger ethnic Chinese are unhappy with the things going on around Malaysia (who the hell is happy anyway). Hey, but there's a lot of other ways of expressing that gloom. Say, doing a parody? Or injecting loads of sarcasm? As an educated generation, the last thing we do is to express ourselves with vulgarities and profanities. Maybe an occasional 'f' and 's' word is fine but MODERATION please!

I think schools should start teaching pupils what is courtesy and fairness. You be fair to other people before expecting them to be fair to you. Agree?

Anyway, kudos to Namewee's many balls - but I did expect something better than this!!

p/s: This is a genuine demand/request for quality music.

Excuse me, what is wrong with vernacular schools?

2 Yawns
I really do not know what is the hoo-hah about these vernacular schools except that it is just any other regular national schools, except maybe the medium of instruction is not in Malay. 

Recently there are spat amongst the Malays (I'm not sure left or right wing since I can't differentiate it) and those so-called very Malaysians inside out to the core called for the abolishment of vernacular schools. Outrageous I tell you! For the record, I did not graduate from vernacular school but I'm still going to speak for it nevertheless. I'm all for learning mother tongue.

Point one - Regular National type schools does not offer mother tongue subjects

Ya ya..we all know the pride of Bahasa Jiwa Bangsa (language the heart of a race) and the super importance of English being the international language. Everybody is rushing to brush up their fluency in English (some refused to improve their English because they think being monolingual in Malay language is sufficient to survive in Malaysia) that mother tongue seems completely obsolete.  So they start attacking those who are determined to learn and speak mother tongues by saying that these people refuses to assimilate. Anti-social they call them. :-(

  • Mother tongue = adopting the Singaporean definition, it means the language of one's ethnic group regardless of actual proficiency.
Mother tongues are symbol of cultural identity. Speaking any other language besides Malay or English does not make someone less Malaysian. Malaysia is made up of many many races and religions. So being strictly monolingual or bilingual doesn't look very Malaysian, don't you think? Ok, at the very least, it doesn't hurt to acquire a third, fourth or fifth language. Vernacular school is the solution.

Point two - Malay language is a compulsory subject in vernacular schools

Clearly, if vernacular school students are 'retarded' in communicating in Malay, the solution is to call for more quality language education in these schools. Get more proficient Malay language teachers perhaps?

Hate their squarish accent? Not everyone is perfect lah. We don't poke fun at those who can't speak fluent Mandarin aside from giggling from an out of tune pronunciation. Look, I've mis-pronounced hell load of times. Lantak lah!

p/s: Speaking about fluency, does anyone actually speak Bahasa Malaysia BAKU?

Point three - the Laws does not prohibit it

Please refer to Article 152 of the Federal Constitution and Section 17 of the Education Act 1996. 

Article 152: (1) The national language shall be the Malay language and shall be in such script as Parliament may by law provide:
Provided that -
(a) no person shall be prohibited or prevented from using (otherwise than for official purposes), or from teaching or learning, any other language; and
(b) nothing in this Clause shall prejudice the right of the Federal Government or of any State Government to preserve and sustain the use and study of the language of any other community in the Federation.

Section 17 Education Act:   National language as the main medium of instruction.
(1) The national language shall be the main medium of instruction in all educational institutions in the National Education System expect a national-type school established under section 28 or any other educational institution exempted by the Minister from this subsection.
(2) Where the main medium of instruction in an educational institution is other than the national language, the national language shall be taught as a compulsory subject in the educational institution.

Am glad that Malaysian laws are supportive of allowing everyone to learn other languages. As a matter of fact, Malaysians are envied because we can are multilingual. Never mind if we can't master a language 100%. Who cares, as long as the message can go across. 

Point four - Hindrance to unity?!

Look, enrollment to vernacular schools are not limited to that particular type of race only. There are so many Malays and Kadazans who are fluent in Mandarin that I have to beat myself to shame for being illiterate in the Chinese characters.

With due respect, openly name-calling Chinese as 'mata sepet' (squinty eyes) and Indians 'si botol' (drunkard) is more hindrance to unity especially if it's coming from a  person representing the National Civics Bureau. Though I do not have squinty eyes but I can't understand what is so hard about referring to a group of people properly. 

Further, the curriculum in vernacular schools are approved by the Ministry of Education. They learn the same Malaysian history and geography as other national typed schools. So what unity are we talking about here?

Actually, the truth is that malicious prejudice against others is much much more a hindrance to national unity. Eg: stereotyping ethnic Chinese as 'ultra-kiasu' or 'pelacur' (prostitute), stereotyping Malays as lazy pigs, stereotyping Indians as cheaters, snakes. There may be favourable percentage to the truth of those stereotypes but I'm sure there are much more positive ways to address the problems rather than to express ourselves in the negative manner.

I believe in the sayings of 'birds of the same feathers flock together'. I too get ostracized whenever I don't belong to the same wavelength with others but hey, that's the reality of life.

You and I have been of school age so we know that kids are skin colour blind. It is the parents and teachers who should re-educate themselves or refrain from sowing seeds of discord and disharmony on their kids. But with cases like Siti Inshah's, I think well....I rest my case. 


Until and unless the government provide mother tongues as subjects in national typed schools, I think it's only fair to keep those vernacular schools.


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