Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Ironies of Progress.

We have very good road in Malaysia. But enjoy it at more than 90kph in KL/Selangor and 110kph elsewhere, you'll get a ticket that costs RM300. Even the locally produced cars are getting better with top speed reaching 220kph.Unfortunately you cannot test their capability. Infact at times in certain areas where there's no traffic or congestion, you must go at only 60kph or even 40kph. You can have the chance of seeing a bicycle overtaking your powerful luxury car.
unreasonable speed limit
Cleanliness has improved so much in the towns and shopping areas, especially the Malls and shopping complexes. Still, there are places where you can't find a trashcan or 'tong sampah' within easy reach to throw your used tissue papers, food wrappers, bottles,cans, etc. You've to keep them first in your pocket or handbag until you find a convenient place to throw them away. And that for some, may not be a rubbish dump or a trashcan. It could be on the well-swept roads or the sidewalk, the drains and even at the corner of a shop. Hey, you can sometimes see the missile flying out of passing cars. Or rubbish bombs dropping from a high-rise building.So do look up sometimes when passing such residential areas.
bicycles can go faster
Talk about modern residential areas with swimming pools, parking lots, beautiful gardens etc.If it's located in the heart of towns and cities, you certainly can't run away from the hustle and bustle of the urban life. Rooms and even lounges are often small and air-conditioned. So the older folks can go to the little park of garden for a walk and get some fresh air. But can you get the peace and quiet that yopu want. Cars and motorcycles, especially when owned by the young ones, instead of being fitted with silencers, are now fitted with exhausts as large as a cannon. And they do make a noise as loud as a cannot but on a sustained basis. They can cause your eardrums to collapse.
milky rivers
Well, go to the countryside if you want peace and quiet. Have a picnic by the sea shore, the riverside, the lush green hills. Better still buy a second home or a weekend hideout there. Have you done that? First of all the water at the seashore, the river and the stream may not be the 'sparkling, sweet smelling, and invigorating life-force' like we read in the novels anymore. It can be full of oil spills, silt, rubbish and scums. Some streams have been turned into rubbish dumps. Worst of all you don't get the peace and quiet that you sought for anymore. Bulldozers, tractors, huge old trucks, generators, water-pumps, high-powered lawn mowers, chainsaws, and a thousand and one modern machanized work tools could be producing the cacophony that can make you crazy. Green and lush hillsides in both the urban and rural areas are being mechanized away to be replaced by the brick and iron jungle. That's modernization at its best.

The greatest pity, the green playing fields in both urban and rural areas are disappearing. In the urban areas, commercial and residential edifice takes over. Modern playgrounds and courts are exclusive for members. In the rural areas the playgrounds are often left uncared for until the secondary jungles take over. Yes, the youths have left the villages or kampungs and the old folks don't spend their leisure hours in the 'kebun' or the fields anymore. You will find them discussing politics at the coffee shops. No worry though for their sons and daughters are graduates and earning a good salary. Sell a piece of land and they can perform the haj, if their normal saving is noit enough.

Hey, we are a progressive and modern country, fast moving to become a developed nation like the US, UK, Japan etc. But the ironies mentioned, and those are only a few, are real. You may not see them living in your luxury homes. But the kids who are being tortured from small to attend the kindergartens, the schools, colleges and universities, the tuition classes, the extra-curricular programs,the youth camps, the national service etc are feeding the strain.I used to like dreaming about being a kid again. But now....I don't think I like it anymore.


norzah said...

alhamdulillah...I see now more visitors from Malaysia. Thank you guys. Hope you care to comment even with one or to words.

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