Friday, January 1, 2010

Faces of KL

I am a citizen of Kuala Lumpur. I call it home ever since the day I got married, at the Raja Rajeswary Temple, Jalan Ampang.

Atop the small mound, the 'ayer' chanted, ' Blessings ! Blessings ! Shower upon them, Almighty! The thaali was tied and the mrindagam, tabla, nadeswaran all created a happy din! His home , KL was mine henceforth. KL has given me everything - my creature comforts and a home with new beginnings. Importantly, this is where my husband and I have raised our family of 3 kids. We've crossed borders ourselves, steeped in different cultures and practices , enriching our lives among the multi -ethnic citizens of KL.

The city throbs long after I go to bed. It pursues a frenetic pace rushing headlong into the millennium to make its stand among other cities in the world . It has come a long way from its early beginnings and the original pioneers could not have known how its location has smiled favourably upon it. Indeed, fortune smiled upon the growth of KL from its first days and today, KL continues to thrive - a metropolitan city of 1.6 million people.

It stands unique - a city so diverse and dynamic. Its people, their faces embody the spirit and soul of KL. There are so many stories to tell and their stories cross borders and they ask for understanding for them to be heard.

It is not surprising that first -time visitors take a little time to adjust to the diversity and wonders of what makes a Malaysian!

Even for a KLite myself, there are surprising revelations as I stroll around KL. I guess it's the spirit that lives in us that changes the pulse of the place and the people who live in them. On a plane, you see nothing, on a motorway you see the backend of the lorry in front. Come, join me and let the faces of KL 'tell' their stories. There's more if we can sit down over a cuppa!

Bounce, jump, twirl, spin
Life is so merry and free
Because of you, I'm happy
Because of you, I'm gay
Mum and dad,
You make my day!

My son's getting married
The bride's a gem
Not arranged, just love at first sight!
Lucky thing, she's just right
At least his papa and I can sleep right!

Hey world! get ready!
We're the Champs!
Our desire is BIG
Our talents HUGE
Our commitment SOLID
So, here we come- world!

Beauty is skin deep
Some say yes, some disagree
Look at us
Creams, lotions make us beautiful
We stick by that!
But do not forget the smiles, the warmth
To bring it to your face.

Always greet your customers with a smile
It will go more than miles
'Coz they'll come back
To be clothed for the 'kill '
And that will ring your till!

Just ask politely
Do not be scared
The law of the land
Is also your helping hand

They say, grandad, take life easy
Well, by now I think I'm good at it!
I think of the days, what lies ahead
I haven't any answer
It's not in my head!

Hello, there! glad you called
Come over for curry
Hey! and don't be in a hurry
I have lots to tell
Let's make merry
'Coz I'm getting married!

Here I sit, on my haunch
Silently, eyes roving
Watching the world go by
They say life's a stage
And we're merely players
Well, here I am in MidValley Mall
Watching all.

Kopi tiam is not a word
It is my hangout.
Have a tete- tete
With teh tarik and mee
Time to meet my friends
Share and tell

Words of wisdom, words of faith
Prayers over, Friday noon
Time to share, be at peace
O Lord, Almighty!
We're grateful we are at peace.

She ain't heavy, she's my sis-in-law
Over the years, our paths entwine
Over time , our love endures
God bless my sis-in-law

Did you hear the new Bollywood movie is town?
Let's make it there tonight, brother
Let the dances and songs ease our worries
See you there, tonight
No worries!

Sweet sister, be my friend
I may not know what lies ahead
But I know it's fun to play
Let's do it together
Forever and a day

Mum says to dress pretty
That's what a growing lass does best.
Feathers for my hair, necklace round my neck
If boys still can't spot me
What the heck!

One and all, these faces are the faces of 1 Malaysia. Take a stroll around KL - there's no better way to get to know the city and her people than to mingle and see with your own eyes. They will take you straight to the heart of the local experience. I found them along Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, in a nasi padang shop, SOGO shopping mall, Semua House , Madras store, Jalan Masjid India, MidValley mall, Bangsar and Bukit Damansara - a microcosm of KL's rich tapestry.


  1. I loved the poem and the pictures. Happy New Year, Keats.

  2. I love this poem, and the pictures of real people living their lives. Best wishes to you and yours in 2010.

  3. Lovely posting!
    Happy New Year
    from sunny Cairo!

  4. Happy New Year. Nice posting. 1Malaysia mah. Hehe. I like to stroll alone in the city and feel the taste of the city by my feet.

  5. Awesome post, Keats! Love your little doggerels! You should publish a book made up of your narrative verses. I am sure you can illustrate it yourself as well!

  6. Happy New Year
    or in Dutch we say
    Gelukkig Nieuwjaar :-)

    Kareltje =^.^=
    Anya :-)

  7. Lovely faces! Wishing you all the best and a lot of blessings this year, my dear. I hope your son will have a splendid marriage and most importantly a new life with full of joy together :)

  8. Hi
    Lucy, thanks so much! these faces inspired me to write about them:)

    Gran, glad you like the poems. thanks for your kind wishes.

    BLOGitse, thanks for popping in from Cairo. It's lovely to hear from you. happy new year!

    ~Covert_Operations'78~, glad you like them so much!! i know I have someone who has great faith in me - you! Have to give the illustrations a pass though .

    Superman, thanks for popping in. When we want stories, we walk and look for them!! Like me, you too will have many stories to tell.

    Anya, in Malay, 'Selamat Tahun Baru' to you!

    ROSIDAH, Happy new year to you too. Hope you enjoyed your holidays. I look forward to the day he gets married, in fact all 3 of them! Will let you know the good news when they are ready :))

  9. Happy New Year! You have a lovely blog! Love all of your beautiful photos!

  10. Hi Lavender Dreamer, thanks for visiting my blog. Glad you like it:))Not being a professional photographer, it wasn't easy taking these photos , had to be very patient too! Am glad they helped me depict our people. Have a good year ahead!

  11. Great pics and such sweet little lines to go along. It was very pleasing. :)

    I wish you and your loved ones a Very Happy and Safe 2010!

  12. Hi Keats! Happy New Year to you all!!
    Lovely pictures and nice text to go along; great post to start the New Year!!

    Meanwhile Blogtrotter has reached 500 posts on all blogs with some views of «La Petite France, Strasbourg», truly missing your comments! Enjoy and have a first great week in 2010!!!

  13. Good Luck to Blog for FT.... ~bangchik

  14. Hi
    Indrani, happy new year to you too! glad you like the sentiments behind the poems.

    GMG, thanks so much for supporting my blog. great work on yours too. Will definitely keep in touch. have been busy!

    Bangchik, thanks so much for visiting and your kind wishes. Have been working hard on this blog competition. keeping my fingers crossed. Blogging continues and I hope to have more visitors.

  15. Sunshine Girl, I see happy faces in the many happy places that KL is to us. A muddy name but a rich and colourful place. My latest post is dedicated to you. Cheers!

  16. Hi Autumn Belle, yes, happy faces to greet the New year! I'm truly honoured to have your post dedicated to me :)))Thanks a trilion times, my friend ! Popping over right away! You've been a gem , standing beside me and encouraging me on. XXX

  17. I had a fun time reading all of these poems and seeing these friendly faces, you are a good photographer that brings out the best in people!

  18. For a while, I thought our National Day is coming. There's so much love and patriotism in this writing. ^_^

  19. Oh girl, this is my first time at this other blog of yours. wow ... love your work here.

  20. Didn't take notice of the poem until my second visit. They are lovely. Thumbs up

  21. Happy New Year to you. Thanks for popping over my blog. Am down and out after all the merry I hope I can visit Genting Highlands after Chinese New Year...Geez, the last I went was like 17 years ago

  22. I enjoy reading your article and lines of your beautiful poetry. I could sense your pleasure, love and harmony that you enjoyed there among those nice people and beautiful girls. They can be proud and happy of having you in their society. I wish for your son and his Gem abandoned of good health, love, peace, understanding and harmony. May God give them only what is the best for them! The same wishes go to you too and your husband. Thanks for sharing this beautiful post with us. I think it is not too late to wish you all a very Happy New Year.(hug)

  23. Wonderful poem to go with the photos. Great!

  24. Wonderful post as always - so rich, so inclusive, just makes everyone want to come live in KL :)
    Happy happy new year to you and all your loved ones, and look forward to sharing this incredible medium of expression with you!

  25. Wonderful post Keats :) Happy 2010 and we look forward to many more wonderful ones in the future :)

  26. Hi
    Rosey Pollen, am sorry for the late reply. Thanks so much for your compliments. Am glad you like the poems and photos too.

    Shingo T, thanks so much for popping in. great to share my sentiments with everyone.

    lili11, thanks so much!

    Bananaz,have a great year and thanks for your encouragement!

    alicesg, hope you have recovered from all the merrymaking. when you come to kl, hope we can catch up . that would be nice:)

    MedaM, glad to hear from you and hope you're keeping well. do keep in touch and I hope to share more of our lovely people.

    CheaHS@n, Happy New year to you and your family! Thanks so much for your support in my posts!

    Shiasta, i'm certainly looking forward to sharing with you. I love your poems - you express them so well. take care.

    M. Kate, welcome back! Hope you had a wonderful time during the holiday season with your family. Do keep in touch :)

  27. Beautiful! And I love the smiles on the faces.^^

  28. Hi Veronica Lee, love to hear from you:))

    Sashindoubutsu, the smiles are for you and everyone! have a good day!

  29. Well, that is KL, lots of surprises!

  30. Hi
    Pete, I've had many surprises talking to the folks in KL . It's interesting to get to know them, even a wee bit:)


Great to have you popping in!