Monday, August 31, 2009

Merdeka celebration in Penang

2009 marks the 52nd anniversary of the birth of my country, Malaysia. Back then in 1957, it was known as the Federation of Malay States, together with Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore. Singapore withdrew from the Federation in 1963, and the current Malaysia was formed.

In Penang, the spirit of Merdeka is hardly seen, as far as I am concerned. Is it only a Malay thing? As I could see a few odd Malay cars draped in the National Flag, and some Milan buses too, uncharacteristically sported the flags all over their windows. Some Malay houses did have the flags as well.

However, I know a lot of Malaysians in Penang, whatever their races, celebrate Merdeka in their own ways. At Queensbay, there was a galore of cheap sales and to cap it, there was a nice firework that could be seen from my window last night. People also took the opportunity to travel in this three-day weekend which also marked the last of the school holidays.

A group of cyclists rode their bicycles around the city center to promote healthy living and a closer step towards a greener Penang. It may seem like a small effort and hardly make an impact but still... it was done in Merdeka Spirit.

At Little Penang Street Market yesterday, despite the threat of the rain, a big crowd gathered to enjoy the relaxing atmosphere and be entertained by performers. Some of them did sing some songs dedicated to Malaysia.

At Fort Cornwallis, there is an old flag pole overlooking the sea opposite the Esplanade. A navy sailor and his mate, 52 years ago, brought down the Union Jack from this flag pole when we achieved our independence. A big celebration was held at the Esplanade. People from all walks of life thronged there to see the event. Have you seen this photo before? Maybe not. So, here it is, for your viewing pleasure.

Selamat Menyambut Hari Kemerdekaan yang ke 52. Happy Birthday My Malaysia!

Little Penang Street Market
Last year's report on National Day Parade in Penang

1 comment:

  1. Just dropping by to say hi and I like your blog!!
    Thanks .