Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Highlights of 2012: Three Cheers for Malaysia!

The sun rose, golden and glorious. The strains of a familiar tune resonated in the air. A flag was hoisted, and it was unmistakably the glorious Jalur Gemilang. Yes, today was no ordinary day. It is Independence Day! (Not really, just its eve, since tomorrow is a holiday and we don’t go to school on holidays, so there).
Anyways, with patriotic sentiments running high throughout the assembly point, everyone sang with some extra-special gusto to ‘Negaraku’, standing tall and proud as the Jalur Gemilang fluttered high above. With solemnity, an oath was said, binding all of us to the noble precepts of Rukun Negara. As our country becomes 55, one could notice that the significance of these two seemingly simple things was dramatically magnified, heralding 55 years of sovereignty and independence.
After that, a prayer was said for the betterment of the nation, and the assembly turned back to history with our own expert, Pn. Azizah, the principal. She definitely embodied the historical importance of the 31st of August, because she dished out quite a long speech, describing the freedom fighters of old and how we should honour their deeds and take pride in being a rakyat Malaysia!
With that as a taster, we then became part of history, as we relived the seven cries of ‘Merdeka!’  as shouted Tunku Abdul Rahman at Stadium Merdeka. With every cry, the general mood rose to patriotic heights, making everyone feeling even prouder to be Malaysian.
Then, two performances were presented. The first told of a grandfather’s terrifying account of the Japanese Occupation and its end with Malaya’s independence, which definitely elicited his grandchildren’s attention (and the crowd’s too). The second ventured to search for the true meaning of Independence; with its whimsical Mat Sikals mistaking it for anarchy, pulling a wicked sense of humour, only to be chided by a freedom fighter’s speech. Audience-engaging, these demonstrated that even the next generation understands the sufferings of old.
Starting on an upbeat vibe, an aerobics took place. It was received with much gusto, which got everyone into a pseudo-flash-mob. However, everyone got crazy when the strains of unexpected YouTube phenomenon ‘Gangnam Style’ were played. Too bad the teachers weren’t in fitness garb, or else it would’ve gotten more happening!
The celebrations ended as songs as notes blasted through speakers, cajoling everyone to wave their flags and sing (though not so melodiously) to familiar patriotic songs, such as ‘Jalur Gemilang’, ‘Malaysia Berjaya’, and ‘Tanggal 31’. As the songs draw to a conclusion, everyone started waving their flags in elation. Then, it was all over…. What, all over? The fun just started….Well; I’ll just have to wait for next year.

By Kiwan Richard, 16, SMK Bandar Utama Damansara (3), Selangor
This post is part of the line-up ahead of the blog's second anniversary. All these posts will be taken from articles written by students featuring the school on School Times, the educational pull-out from the New Straits Times.

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