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Monday, August 27, 2007

One Voice, One Malaysia

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Updated @ 1318hrs: More blogs that have reported on the event (at the end of the post)

There's a feeling that Walski felt Saturday night that he had not felt in a very long time. It was a feeling of belonging... to feel that he's a part of something important. And on the past Saturday night, for the first time in a very long while, Walski felt it.

And it felt good.

Image hosting by PhotobucketPledging ourselves as one people, one Malaysia

Mere words can hardly describe the feeling Walski had at the moment the picture above was taken, which was towards the tail end of the Bangsa Malaysia Merdeka Get-together last night. You had to be there... re-affirming our pledge of allegience, the Rukunegara, and singing the national anthem, in the glow of candles held by a group of very varied people with one thing in common - that we're all Malaysians - is something that has been missing in Walski's life for a very long time. And based on what Malik Imtiaz confessed - that this was the first national day event he had attended - Walski suspects that this feeling of belonging has been missing from the lives of many of us as well.

Walski didn't attend the forum held earlier in the day, and only got there much later. At the end of this post, Walski has posted links to others blogs that have reported on the event more comprehensively.

Rocky got up to talk about a brief history of how All Blogs came about - oh, Walski neglected to mention that the event was held at the Blog House, the new home of the National Association of Bloggers, or All-Blogs.

Image hosting by PhotobucketThe picture may have come out underexposed, but definitely not so with All Blogs...

Jeff Ooi, whom from now on shall have the prefix of Y.B. (which at this stage in his political career, stands for Yang Ber-blog), also got up and gave us a pantun (traditional Malay verse).

Image hosting by PhotobucketYang Ber-blog (YB) Jeff Ooi...

Walski's personal highlight of the evening was finally, after all this time, meeting buddy blogger Howsy face-to-face for the first time. This is one fair-skinned, handsome specimen of manhood, whom Mrs. Walski said later, even puts her to shame (and yes, the Mrs is pretty fair herself)!
(Walski & Howsy, and more, in the full post)

Image hosting by PhotobucketSomehow, this is the way the picture came out...

Yeah, it's definitely one for Walski's treasured picture scrapbook... Walski also met face-to-face, for the first time, folks like SK Thew, the legendary TV Smith, Hafiz (aka the __earthinc), Lulu and the bubbly Cheryl, among others. And also the chance to catch up with old friends and acquaintences, and of course, make new ones.

Image hosting by PhotobucketWE WERE HERE!
(courtesy of TV Smith)

More importantly, we came to the crux of why we were all there - the unveiling of an initiative to reclaim our place in history - Pelitar, which stands for Penyanyang Legasi dan Inspirasi Tunku Abdul Rahman, which will carry the aspirational torch of Bangsa Malaysia to other parts of the nation, beginning with Penang, tentatively on September 16 (which incidentally is Hari Malaysia - the actual day Sabah and Sarawak joined the federation to form the geographical Malaysia we know today).

Image hosting by PhotobucketUnveiling Pelitar...

In unveiling this initiative, Haris Ibrahim, the man behind The People's Parliament, and one of the key driving forces behind Pelitar, gave us a reminder of what our Father of Independence, the late Tunku Abdul Rahman aspired for us, and in Tunku's own words, what he also feared. It is a reminder, a painful one at that, of how far we have actually deviated from what our Bapa Kemerdekaan had aspired for us. Today we stand as a nation divided along racial, religious and ideological lines... which is something the Pelitar initiative hopes to reverse.

Walski ends this post with another look at the Rukunegara and Negaraku rendition by candlelight...

Image hosting by PhotobucketSomehow, this is the way the picture came out...

And in the glow of about 50-some candles, we came together as one people, celebrating half a century of nationhood, during a night where race, sex and political affiliation became irrelevant. We were there for one and only one reason - to celebrate our nation, Malaysia, as one people - Bangsa Malaysia.

Other blogs reporting on the Bangsa Malaysia Merdeka Get-together (UPDATED):
3540 Jalan Sudin
A Little Taffer's Room
Big Dog
Euphoria in Misery
June x 2
MageP's Lab
My Journal
Rocky's Bru
SOB Nation
The Nocturnal Mind
The People's Parliament
The Sensintrovert
Yeah, sure, whatever