Happy Birthday Federal Territories ! - Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Labuan. The Federal Territory and Urban Well-Being Minister, Datuk Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin announced it would be a month long celebration, with events to bring people together - to celebrate our togetherness. This year's celebratory theme is '1 Wilayah Perseketuan, Maju dan Sejahtera' ( 1 Federal Territory, Progress and Prosperity)
I really couldn't let this opportunity slip by to find out the buzz at Dataran Merdeka. After all, I've ' breathed' FT in my being, in my posts for the past 3 months of the Blog For FT competition. I am a KL girl! Here's my big chance to wish KL ' Happy 36th Birthday!'
1 February morning was one dedicated for the young and old to shine, embracing the able- bodied and the disadvantaged groups. An excellent mix, I would say as all could mingle and show their prowess in their capabilities. I missed the flag off of the cycling event where veterans took part too.
I was glad to see the uniformed groups in action - doing smart, well- rehearsed turnouts before the judges. In the scorching heat, they marched and impressed the audience with their footwork and strict timing to deliver precise formations under the judges' keen scrutiny. If it is anything that our youths should join, let it be a uniformed organisation like the Scouts, Cadets, Red Cross etc. Many facets of discipline and values are learned and we have our youths ready to face the future - for themselves and the nation. Kudos to FT for bringing them on!
I wandered round and immersed myself in the activities. One of the volunteers casually asked, ' Miss, nak try ?' Not one to pass off an invitation, I had my share of fun too - a wheelchair race from my challengers!! Really, through fun, we can begin to empathize with wheelchair users who have to get used to wheelchairs for most part of their lives. Putting oneself in their shoes is always humbling.
There was aslo a game of soft tennis and football for the blind and the wheelchair users. It was all in the spirit of a game to enjoy, a helping hand and company to keep too.
The much younger children also had their day with parents and families to cheer them on. Honestly, in any performance, don't the little ones steal our hearts away with their naturalness?
As we cherish our successes, the celebrations will continue. Like all KLites, our hopes, our dreams are with you KL. May we progress and prosper. May this place we call HOME be our dream home. In the Muhibbah spirit of 1 Malaysia , let's also celebrate our huge diversity of folks.
The cadets were smartly -attired and performing a good turnout at the rhythmic march parade competition. The sun was beating down but not a step amiss. They gave a commendable performance and the crowd rewarded them with an appreciative applause.
All eyes on the march parade. The ceremonial pomp is always a draw and who can resist the footwork and precise formation ?
The Bomba group, vying among the other uniformed groups - Bulan Sabit (Red Cross), St John Ambulance, Scouts, etc.
When it's hot and you've done your bit, you deserve to have some fun and camaraderie with your friends. I guess they must have risen with the cock crow to be there for the important day.
Watching intently, learning too - the Bulan Sabit (Red Cross) members were part of the audience.
If there's one free, fun ride, this upih pinang race is for you! Never mind the load - it's mind over matter! As I watched several rounds of the race, the upih performed admirably - none broke.
Wouldn't Datuk Lat, our beloved cartoonist love to see this in action? In his book, Kampung Boy Yesterday and Today, he recalls the traditional games of kampung life. Take a upih from the pinang tree and what do you know - a Malaysian sleigh ?? Tons of enjoyment from simple pleasures !
Children had their share of fun and prizes too - a game of blowing away flour on a plate to reveal some sweets hidden. No hands, ma! But I would caution inhaling flour in the excitement! Luckily, no untoward accidents. When the game was over, the white faces just didn't matter - the prizes were waiting for them.
I thought they would melt in the heat but these little ones proved me wrong! They looked as cool as cucumbers as they waited for their turns to appear on a big stage to perform. With Chinese New Year round the corner, they were looking their best - in cheong sam and sam foo.
Liew, one of the basketball players who represents Malaysia was seen having a swell time with his friends. His girlfriend brought him there to enjoy the muhibbah spirit of the day. I was watching him for a while. He really had the stamina to keep going! He works in an internet business.
Could I have resisted the invitation to have a race? The boys did not put me off! I was the 'wayward' one - a wee slope in the pavement took me off the straight for the race!! The boys were volunteers from UiTM ( University Teknologi Mara)and they were there to lend a helping hand in organising events etc.
Achit, one of our paralympic Malaysian basketball players was thoroughly enjoying himself - from the wheelchair and up from it, refereeing a game.
Achit, obligingly posed for me and we had a friendly conversation. He has been playing basketball for 5 years and he's proud to represent Malaysia. Training is in Balakong with MSSM (Malaysian School Sports Council) and when he's not training, he works in a cyber cafe.
The eyes have it but in this football game, you have to be sure of yourself. I saw the blind and sighted, both being blindfolded to kick away. Gosh, wonder what the goal keeper was thinking of - what's coming his way??
Gear yourself for a game of paint ball and there were many eager takers. Pump up the adrenaline and be ready for the shootout!
Hasan Basri ( left),84, taking part in the KL Ride in conjunction with Federal Territories Day at Dataran Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur - NST picture by Abdullah Yusof (from the NST report on Tuesday, 2 February,2010)
As mentioned, I missed this event. But seeing En Hasan Basri , all of 84 - all smiles and fit as fiddle on his bike, it sure lifts my spirit. Here's wishing him many more birthdays to come. Way to go, grandpa !
Last of all, Happy Birthday Federal Territories!