Sunday, 27 April 2008

Change. It's a verb.

Well, it’s been a long time since I last wrote and of course, much has happened since then. I refer of course to March 8 and all that the results of the Malaysian polls signify.

The outcome was gratifying for a number of reasons. First was simply that the democratic process is clearly alive and well in Malaysia. It seems that the People’s vote does count for something after all. That realisation gives me (and many others too I’m sure) great comfort and encouragement.

Just as deeply satisfying was the overnight birth of a system of very real checks and balances. The chance to swing a wrecking ball at the walls of corruption and all else that has become wrong with our country is a compelling one indeed.

Some time ago, it seemed that so many people were falling into a deep sense of helplessness, despair, even cynicism. Perhaps it was a good thing. Perhaps it led to an attitude of ‘enough is enough’ for then came all those protest rallies and suddenly it seemed people began to realise the power of numbers. Ten thousand, twenty thousand, thirty… it doesn’t matter. On March 8 scores of thousands of little gnats came together and made change happen through their individual votes.

And the wonder of it all is that the change continues to happen.

Now, this is not a political blog. I have my political opinions but serve no allegiance to any political entity. Instead, I serve allegiance to a Malaysian Ideology built on a foundation of some very sound principles. These principles are apolitical, even if they have been politicised before. And indeed continue to be.

Still, I made a deliberate choice not to make Celebrate Malaysia! a political soapbox.
Instead, Celebrate Malaysia! has always been about making change happen, one person at a time. In October last year, I began a journey that would take almost 6 weeks and which would change me. I spoke then about the concept of influence and I expressed the hope that people who followed my story would, in their own way, be influenced. And changed. It was deeply fulfilling to discover that some people indeed were.

Change continues to happen. We’ve proven to ourselves that we can - ‘Malaysia Boleh!’ and despite the cynical and even satirical usage of that phrase since its creation, I can’t think of any that is more appropriate. The idea that we are not helpless is a compelling and empowering one, and like a drug, it consumes us and we want more and we want to do more.

Well, come the end of this year, around the time of the first anniversary of my little ride, I hope indeed to do another.

This one will take less than a week, but will be far from ‘little’.

300 people. 300 km. 300,000 Ringgit raised for 3 charities or worthy causes.

This idea may be mine, but the effort will be Malaysian. And as we showed on March 8, if little gnats get together, anything is possible. So, I have no doubt we can do this, and more besides.
So, come join me. It will be monumental, historical, and utterly Malaysian. It will need all sorts of people to make it happen - PR people, media, drivers, organisers, co-ordinators, sponsors, accountants, medical… the list goes on. If you’re keen to join me in planning and executing this, contact me.

We have 6 months or so, so don’t sit around. Let’s continue to make change happen.

Forever Falls - a day trip to Selama in Perak

Fishing in Oil Palm Estates It seems this part of Perak is all about waterfalls. We’d seen signboards for so many in our recent travel...