In our efforts to make Bahasa the national laguage in Malaysia, it must be appreciated that Dewan Bahasa and Pustaka is NOT the only institution involved or responsible. The schools, colleges and universities whether the medium of instruction is Bahasa or otherwise, the Government offices and business organizations are all responsible. It's not only the command of Bahasa that must be strengthened to meet the need of a developed country but also the command of other business languages particularly English, Chinese and Japanese. Spanish and French can also be of great help for going into the European, Latin American and Africa markets.
Is the Malaysians' command of Bahasa good after more than half a century of independence and more than 50 Bulan Bahasa as launched by Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka? ( Cannot get the date for the first launch in spite of many write-ups about it in the Google)). I doubt the ability of even some of the Malay students to express themselves in Bahasa as fluently as as say Senator Lee Lam Thye or YB Chan Soi Lek. But more disturbing is the English being spoken by many Malaysians, what more the students. Under the pretext of fooling around with broken English, they sometimes show that they fail to grasp even the basic thing in English grammar. Thus we hear things like " I did went", " He don't care one", " I so lucky", "it no good", etc, etc. It sounds most embarrassing at times. Sometimes back we have seen that even examination papers for schools cpntained a number of grammatical errors. No wonder Government is going to import more than 370 English teachers to teach English in our schools. Local teachers don't seem to be able to produce Malaysians with a good command of the language like before. One should tune to CCTV to see and hear how the Chinese in China have mastered the English or American language.
AS for learning other languages, the urgency doesn't seem to be there. Adults begin to learn another language when their work requires them to do so. But I'm wondering why schools could not introduce other languages as a fun class, Students can do anything they want but
must speak in the language that is being introduced. Yea, yea the school time-table is already so crowded, how on earth can you introduce a fun class? This probably is what is wrong with our education system today. We've taken away all the fun from learning and we try to pump in as much 'book knowledge' into the heads of the students as possible. And we force them to learn up things by setting up examinations after examinations.
But everyone knows that problem. Until someone high up there cares it will continue to remain with us making everyone inured to it. As they say: mind over matter, if the boss doesn't mind, it doesn't matter. So let's talk about something that does matter and affects all relationships ie. marriage.
Five of us attended a wedding in Lubuk Cina, Melaka, on Saturday. We drove off in one car at about ten in the morning expecting the normal road jams and the crawling traffic from KL and therefore giving a lot of time for that. The invitation card says it begins at 12 noon and when we arrived in Lubuk Cina at 11.45 am I suggested that we kill some time so that we don't appear too early. We visited the Lubuk Cina Mosque (a beautiful place indeed), relaxed, and then approached the place again. It was already full of guests and many had already started lunch - at about 12.05. After meeting the hosts and the relatives who invited us we also joined the feasting. Boy, the food was just excellent and sumptious and most of us had a double helping.
See pics. The feasting begins
After a hefty lunch we went into the bridal chamber and found the bride still in her homely attire. about to be ready for the warpaint and the the bridal dress. The bedroom was still not ready and a photographer was waiting for the bride to be done up.
A peep into the bridal chamber
From the time we arrived. the most entertaining part of the wedding occasion was the music playing in the background and the running commentaries which were fluent, humorous and lively. Guests were welcomed, funny incidents highlighted and family members given a friendly teasing. I just couldn't resist the urge to get to know him and finally got a picture of the pleasant young MC. He was not even formally dressed but and taking things in his stride.
(See pic - The Sweet Cameralady)
As I joked around with the MC, off record certainly as he kept the music going on joyfullt, the bride appeared all dressed up and accompanied by two young and angelic bridemaids.
The Fun MC.
It was not long after that before the bridegroom came and meet the bride accompanied by
The bride appeared with two angelic and young bridemaids.
a volley of kompang beats and drums - a traditional Malay reception for the bride and groom. All present
strained their necks to have a close look at the
King and Queen of the Day ( Raja Sehari) as they appeared in a gleaming royal attire. I managed to rush to a point where I could snap them entering the well-adorned bridal arch and you can see the result. Not a very good shot but a perfect angle. What can you expect of a handphone camera! The bride is from Lubuk Cina and the groom from Kulim, Kedah. That's a long way off but "Ikan di laut, asam di darat, dalam periuk mungkin sepakat". A marriage is really made in heaven.
The bride and groom
The wedding over we travelled back to KL stopping at a birthday celebration in Senawang. In the car the wife was silent and sullen. suffering from a tummy-ache she had had since two days ago. Could be that she had eaten a little too much. Out of expectation, after chatting around with the guests at the reception, a relative saw the wifes's sullen face and commented that she could be suffering from a windy tummy. A small massage session took place in front of everyone ( See pic) Duan the masseur at work
Hehehe. She did improve and could smile and laugh after that persuading some four or five people to go for a massage at that place. In a separate room of course.....
Oh, what a day. The Language of Business involves not only languages but family business sessions.