By P Chong Saturday, 23 January 2010
It’s most refreshing when I look back to the days when 300 of us Malaysian students of different colour, race & creed were living in distinct harmony & peace, 8,000 miles away from home, in a little spot near Liverpool, UK, we called Kampong Kirkby.We felt proud to be who we were . . . Malaysians. I doubt we were even conscious of the fact that Azimah was different from Kim or she from Arul. We saw & perceived each other as friends & colleagues, though the first was of Malay origin, with Kim as a Chinese and Arul of Indian background.(Not real names).That was in the 50s & 60s of an era gone by & sadly missed.
The state of affairs in Malaysia these days is far from desired, and absolutely unbelievable that racial disharmony & discontent can come to breed & exist through the politicisation, polarisation & manipulation of the ruling UMNO. When looking in from outside & abroad the country, we can see how futile, ridiculous and indeed sad though laughable the narrow-mindedness of the UMNOputras have turned out to be – desperate for power to be perpetually in their hands. The aftermath & virtual defeat from the last election have made this desperation even more so. Who in the saneness state of mind would imagine playing politics & connotation with a little religious word which called for reverence & respect in the name of our same Maker.
They have been playing the political game for far too long & are now losing their sense of direction, good judgement, fair treatment & blind for the overall well being of the country. People can get so emotionally uptight that temperature flare & tempest roar! Devious politicians know full well that with a little political push & pull, an ugly scenario can erupt . . . not again with May 13 history repeating itself!
The world today is an open world, transparent & unconfined. Globalisation & the high tech world of instant communication mean that the people around the world get to know instantly whatever is happening. You can’t conceal . . . you are revealed!
With hindsight, I was looking back at the life & love of the Malaysian teacher-trainees in Kirkby College. It was so beautiful. Can’t help wanting to relive those days all over again . . . when relationship was good and life was free & easy. I could see Azimah’s curl & lovely hair style with her face & smile clearly visible . . . Arul looked equally great in western blouse & skirt as in her Indian saree. When different festivals came around such as Hari Raya, Chinese New Year or Deepavali, we all got together in joint celebrations, dressing up in sarong & kebaya, cheongsam or saree. The array of different colours just enhanced further the beauty of the joyous occasion.
I remember too, the opportunity of enjoying our cultural concert of a variety of music & dance. There was this diminutive Malay lady singer who rendered equally well both English & Malay songs with her golden voice. Not forgetting though, there was this equally small Singh who could sing & match melodiously with her. No names mentioned here, but I am sure Kirkbyites would remember them.
Alas the College song we sang of the “Land of Golden Chersonese” that seemed so far away has finally gone away beyond our reach! As one famous writer would utter: “Cry, My Beloved Country!”
With all the rich natural resources, Malaysia should be “exploding” in its economic development. Instead it is “imploding” within with all the trivialities of race & religion.
Everything could be set right again if political vision is on the right track. The ruling elites have been fortunate thus far to have a population mass so docile & resilient, but with mounting pressure & continuing unfair superimposition, all hell can break lose and then paradise would be lost!
Tell yourself this:
“Whatever to be it’s up to me!”
A Chinese by Descent
An Australian by Consent
Related Posts by the same writer:
1. Kirkby – Down Memory Lane (June 2009)
2. Kirkby College Memorabilia (August 2009)
3. Tun Dr. Mohamed Mahathir – A Tribute With Repute (August 2009)
4. Malaysia Merdeka! (August 2009)
2 thoughts on “Kampong Kirkby”
Hi i just want you to know we have a site called memories Of Kirkby on Facebook and the malaysian college has been mentioned and a few photographs of the college is on the group site and hope you would like to join. http://www.facebook.com/groups/memoriesofkirkby/10150341990877505/?notif_t=group_activity. Thank you. Jay
Hi again i put a post on about Memories Of Kirkby and we like to hear from you and other Malaysians who came to kirkby in the 1950’s to add your memories of the college and other area’s of Kirkby to the Facebook group site and have over 3,880 members from Kirkby and other parts of the world who once lived at Kirkby (Ex Pats) and have over 2000 Old and New Photographs of Kirkby and it’s History and is also a reunion Group for people who have lost contact over the years and for people reminiscing. it’s a great site and would. once again Jay.