Monday, August 31, 2009

My 1Malaysia Memories

Flicking through the newspaper today, one would see manifestations on 1Malaysia by various corporate giants are all over its pages. I don't know, to me 1Malaysia is not at all a new "concept". As I rummaged through the old family albums I found these powerful reminders from the past.

Angklong Team of Convent Seremban. Our teacher/conductor was Mrs Tan, a pretty lady whose hair was all the time neatly coiffured. The rest in the team comprised of students from mixed races. We won the Pesta Music competition in NS and as a reward we were invited to perform for the King and Queen at a Merdeka celebration in Dewan Bahasa & Pustaka.


The Year 6 Boria group. Chinese, Indians, Punjabi, Portuguese and Malays singing in harmony "Selamat lah datang kami ucapkan...." and closed each verse with punch line "Yea-bah!!"
(teka lah yang mana satu saya :D)

Convent Seremban Prefects Year 1976. Another mixed combination of students of all races. We sang, we ate and we cried together. Our headmistress was Ms Vickki Muthu and adviser was Pn Suria.

This is 1Malaysia to me. Cultivating the idea starts from young. There were no fancy adverts on tv or radio telling us how to be ONE. But we knew that we were ONE and how great it felt having each other.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with U.. all this 1Malaysia is bullshit... just some slogan from stup*d politician..

Anonymous said...

Kay, being an ex-Convent Seremban myself (same batch as your sister), I share your sentiments. Those days there were no slogans, we just knew the multi racial country that we are as we knew then through the friends and teachers such as Ms Muthu, Cikgu Suria, Mrs Tan, Mrs Kong, Mrs Gan and many more....

I am not sure if you remember Ms Muthu's mantra of "I must, I can and I will" he he! To this day I repeat this to my own kids!

Queen Of The House said...

Kay, my primary school pictures at St Nicholas Convent Alor Setar look a lot like yours too. We already had 1Malaysia back then ... then some stooopid politicians/policies ruined it all.

Kak Teh said...

we grew up with 1 malaysia, it is sad that the present generation doesnt enjoy it. I still have the 1 malaysia sentiments - and i echo QOTH. we were from the same school

Kama said...

Like kak Teh, I too grew up with 1Malaysia and am certainly none the worse for it. iMalaysia ni dah wujud lama - in another mould.

I think some people have preconceived ideas about 1Malaysia just because it it promoted by the government of the day - am sure if you ask them to elucidate, terkapai nak explain.

mamasita said...

True true! Dari dulu dah ada 1 Malaysia..I can't remember any clear-cut seggregation..we mixed around so freely with our friends from the different races!

I tahu! Dalam photo tu..you tengah nyanyi kat mikropon tu! Yang pakai gaun labuh!!

ummi365 said...

Weiii you were in convent seremban.. i was there to in std 1 and std 2.. i remember ms muthu.. oh that first day of school semua kena queue up tenguk macam mana nak kec...g kan..hahaha..

dah tak ingat dah nama my classroom. masa tu belanja 15sen je dapat air and mee sup kan hahaha.

kay_leeda said...

Dear Anon@6:19,

1Malaysia has been around for the longest we can ever imagine. The fact that we function side by side with all races in the country is the living proof.

Those politicians?? Let's pray that they know what they are doing for the sake of the country and our future generation.

kay_leeda said...

Dear Anon@6:46PM,

Oh...you were in Convent too? Yes, those teachers I must say they did a superb job. Not only with our academics, but also special attention was put on moral education and inculcating good values. All those teachers you mentioned taught me. And to the rest like Cikgu Zaleha (arwah), Cikgu Tengku Ainiah, Ms Lee, Uztazah Kamariah and many, many more, I salute them.

Yes, how could one ever forget Ms Muthu's "I must, I can and I will". During report card time, kecut perut!!!

kay_leeda said...

Dear QoTH,

Ahh...another Convent girl too!!! I really loved those year end concerts. From the costume measuring day right to the performance nite itself. Excited gilerrr :)

Them politicians?? Haiya.....they know how to talk only lah. Ask them to say out what exactly is 1Malaysia...terkial-kial!!

kay_leeda said...

Dear Kak Teh,

Indeed it's sad. When I ask my girl how many Chinese or Indian friends she has at school, her reply was ONE. What a pity kan? They don't get to experience that excitement of being in school with the other races (plus the competitive spirits too).

Lucky we have two Chinese neighbours. Itu lah yang dok boleh buat cerita and examples ke they all.

kay_leeda said...

Dear Kak Puteri,

Yes, we all did kan? At the market, my late father's favourite fish monger was the typical China man. Okay je they all, siap bertepuk-tepuk lagi. Then the newspaperman was the Indian fellow whom he always joked with. Isn't that 1Malaysia - the "thing" everyone is talking about now?

Tak faham..tak faham....

You are right, when asked many don't know head or tail what is 1Malaysia..sigh.

kay_leeda said...

Dear Mamasita,

You are so very right. No segregation, seronok je kita lepak kat newsstand yang berbangsa India. Siap boleh dapat gula-gula free lagi kan :)

Wahh..you so pandai make that guess lah. Yup...I'm the one harping on the microphone. Masa kecik-kecik tak tau malu, org suruh nyanyi...saya belasah je :D

kay_leeda said...

Ummi,

You too from Convent Sban?? Know wonder otak kita serupa..har..har. Oh...Miss Muthu tu tok sah nak cakap lah..memang takut ..err more like respect her so much.

Yess..mee kat canteen tu sodap!!! Entah apa lah yg auntie canteen tu letak..wooo :)

Anonymous said...

You can take a convent girl out of her school but you can never take the convent spirit out of her. Today's school may have more facilities but lack identity.

JackieM said...

Hi Kay, just came across your blog; saya pun dari Convent Seremban - class of '84 - left mid-year in Form 5 because my family emigrated to Australia. I remember Miss Muthu and the caning sessions when our report cards were out; and having my exercise book thrown across the room by Miss Lee because of a grammatical error which I've never repeated ever since. Bittersweet memories, lol. And my friends were evenly split between Malays and Chinese, plus a couple of Indians.

Angela TMK said...

Yes... brings fond memories indeed. I was from the class of '77. Convent was known as CHIJ (Convent of the Holy Infant Jesus) Seremban back then. They introduced Malay medium for Geography and History subjects during my time. Miss Muthu... who can forget her. I saw her at Shah Alam Section 6 market a few years ago. Still spotted the same thick glasses and hairdo. Come to think of it, she quite resembles Mrs Courtney of "Mind Your Language".. Back then, we were always associated with St Pauls Instituition, the boys school a couple of streets away. Secondary school head mistress fondly referred to as Sister Monica or Reverand Mother... Such a sweet little ol' lady, who was very strict with us. A stroke of the cane for each subject failed. The dreaded moments of being at her office and punished for plucking our eyebrows or having our skirts above the knee.. Fear strikes those who were within earshot of her claps.. But what fine people she brought out of us. God bless you Sister Monica and may her soul rest in peace. Sister Catherine our literature teacher... such a beauty she was and a mild tempered lady, yet well respected for her love a patience for her pupils. Miss Lee was my Form 5 class teacher. Lovely lady. Softspoken but dedicated. They live in our hearts forever...

Oniey said...

never had any cane from my convent teachers. Good memories are cherish and treasures for the whole of my life. Though am Malay and from kampung, Mrs Lee was the one who spotted me "blind" and need to have glasses. Wonder how she did it.

Anonymous said...

never had any cane from my convent teachers. Good memories are cherish and treasures for the whole of my life. Though am Malay and from kampung, Mrs Lee was the one who spotted me "blind" and need to have glasses. Wonder how she did it.

Anonymous said...

Miss Muthu thwacked me just once across the palm for my bad handwriting. She never needed to do it again. Sister Monica was special :) She always used to tell us about the little engine that could and how "it doesn't matter if you win or lose, it's how you play the game" :) By the way, my mother was Mrs Lee from Convent Primary.