Saturday, March 30, 2013

Reminising - Cultural shock...

Today is the last Saturday of March 2013. It is a beautiful day. I decided to clean the patio and my little garden. After that had breakfast and then surf the Internet and start blogging; Nothing much just reminiscing these thoughts of mine.... In April 1971 I was send to Australia to attend a course under the Colombo Plan. It was the first time I had ever gone overseas and this trip excites me. At that time not many Malaysian goes overseas thus we were delighted to have been selected to go overseas; Australia. I was in my early thirty working in Malacca with two small kids. My spouse at that time was working at the Telecom Department there. It was difficult to leave the young kids and their mother but attending the course is very important to my career. I had no choice but to go for the three month course in Australia.  So with heavy heart I went. Three of us young officers arrived at the Perth Airport in the early dark morning. The weather was cold and the smell of the atmosphere was different. We are indeed in a strange place that personally I had never dream of been but here am I in Australia, a white man land. While waiting for the local representative to take us to the hotel we sat to have coffee. I look at the board at the back of the counter and saw they have Black Coffee and White Coffee. Not sure what a White Coffee is we decided to be on the safe-side by ordering Black Coffee. I notice that all the shopkeepers are white man and more white man are seen sweeping the floor, collecting trash and one even open the door for us. I was shock to see the white man doing all these things since back home during the colonial era they were the Tuan [Boss] and this is the first time I saw the white doing any manual works. I was shock to see the white or  MatSaleh were doing works just like us back home. Four hundred years of colonialism did that to our mindset; thinking that all white-man are Boss or Tuan. That was the first time I went overseas thus my reaction to that happening at the Airport. Anyway after spending three months in Australia I learned that we are after all are the same except of the knowledge we have. So it teaches me a very important lesson that knowledge is very important for us to stay independent and progress likes those in the west. At the course I learn as much as I could of how the Australian handle their rural youth. And of course while there I saw the developed country with modern  amenities at close range and that I learn too. On my return I use that knowledge I learned to introduce new Youth programme for the benefit of our young in the rural area. During the period of the course we were taken to almost all the cities in Australia.  The image on the left show us on a street in Melbourne, Australia.

Have a nice day.


Pak Zawi said...

Pak Idrus, a great experience indeed. You were the pioneers and you must have brought home a feeling of self confidence to propel you forward in your career.

Al-Manar said...

You thought the country was full of matsaleh as bosses. I thought they belonged to an arrogant lot. To my surprise they behaved with more polished manners than many of our people. They opened the door for people to get through first, offered their seat to elderly people and so on.

Elaine said...

Agreed with Al-Manar, they have better manners than many of us- especially the sales/customer service personnel.

Pak Idrus said...

Pak Zawi thanks for the visit and sharing your thoughts on the subject of this posting.

Yes it was a great experiences indeed since we were the pioneer officers of the Youth Ministry at that time. Base on the knowledge I gain in Australia I wrote a working paper entitle Projek Belia Peladang which later became a national rural youth program. The paper was discuss in the Ministry and because of that I was transferred to the Ministry Youth Division and start to work under the able leadership of the Division head Abdulah Hj. Ahmand [Pak Lah] I spend 5 years in the Division and got promoted into Division One of the Culture, Youth and Sports Service. From there I move on with promotion until I retired in 1989 at the age of 50 Years old.

Have a nice day.

Pak Idrus said...

Al-Manar, thanks for the visit and sharing your thoughts on the subject of this posting.

I had the opportunity to work under the British officer during the first few years of our independence. There were not that many of them at that time but I saw many when I was growing up in the forties and the fifties.

I am not sure about they been arrogant but I do know they were courteous and always work diligently in whatever they are doing despite been away from their homeland. I do adore them for their discipline in their dressing as well as in carrying out their official tasks. I believe I learned to be a discipline worker from them which later prove useful when I became head of department as I move on as government officer.

Have a nice day.

Pak Idrus said...

Elaine, thanks for the visit and sharing your thoughts on the subject of this posting.

Yes they are a discipline lot with good PR thus their customer service were always better. As a person who had work under the British Officer and latter on saw them working in the hospitality industries where they always kept the standard of the industries at a highest level I was sad to see the standard went down when the local took over from them.

Have a nice day.