Sunday, 5 February 2012

Dear Home... what happened to you?


It has been a long time since I had the Chinese New Year reunion dinner back at home, it has been an affair at the restaurant for a while now.  But my aunt and my sis decided to cook and hence, we had our last reunion dinner back at home.

Speaking of home, it has also been a while since I went back.  I mean when I am back, it's usually for a brief stay as most of the time, I will take my Dad out for lunch or dinner.  So with the reunion dinner happening back home, for the first time since I moved out... I spent some time back at my home.

I arrived early, helped out a bit, had a proper dinner and stayed back to chill for a while.  It gave me an opportunity to actually spend some time looking around the house.... more specifically, the neighbourhood.

It's not the best neighbourhood but it was nice, or how it used to me.  Nice food store everywhere and most people are familiar faces.   Now though, it's like foreign land.  Most of the people of my generation have moved out while those of my parents' generation tend to stick around.  Well, either they stick around or they leave for the eternal resting place.

When I looked around after parking my car when I was back for reunion, I realised that the neighbourhood is now infested with .... honestly, I don't even know the origin of these people.  One thing for sure, they are not Malaysians - wait, maybe they do carry MyKad, you'll never know.

From the mid section of my house, I could look across to the mid section of other units within the block (yeah, it's one of those very old design of low-cost flats). My neighbours used to familiar faces of aunties and uncles who either man the nearby fruit store or hawkers.  Now though when I looked across, I actually saw all the rooms are now rented out to (again) people whom I can't accurately tell where their origin is.  And there were a lot of them. 

And they didn't give me a friendly look either.

The coffee-shops and convenient stores within the area have all been changed to either "mamak" store or middle-eastern eateries.

I feel like an outsider now, I feel like I don't know this place anymore.

One would hope that such drastic changes would be a result of progress... or development.  But no... I can't even find a word to describe the transformation that has taken place here.

And something tells me that this change that I am witnessing - will only gather momentum.

Just to digress a little... a country usually deports illegal immigrants.  But in Malaysia, I was told that all the illegal immigrants can just go to the embassy and get themselves registered and voila... they become legal.  I understand millions, who we have no idea why they are in Malaysia and what economic contribution they can bring into Malaysia can now call Malaysia their home.

After my reunion dinner, I thought to myself... Home, what happened to you?

I guess in the not so distant future, I will have to ask the same thing about my country.

Or maybe, I should asking already. 

18 comments:

Jun said...

this is how i felt whenever i went home in the last few years. it's a country which i don't even recognise anymore.

Tsu Lin + + said...

Very introspective post and I agree, while it used to be unsafe last time, and still is, it is now also "infested"(as you put it)!

And definitely not due to "development" or "progess".

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

well for me its not so much the "infestation" that I am not used to but just the diff races and the manners that gives me a bit of a shock esp after living in a "white" country.

that being said, maybe i am lucky, the area i stay in is generally the same, the areas i hang out remains the same..no infestation. phew.

Amanda Christine Wong said...

that's sad. same thing happening in sabah. the number of illegal immigrants is more than the locals. n some of them are 'eligible' to go to universities now. soon, who knows who'll rule sabah. tragic.

Sophie said...

I wouldn't even bat an eyelid. Been happening in my home state since before I was born. Have learnt to co-exist...

Anonymous said...

Alot has changed indeed , practically everywhere ! And as u mentioned it , I have to confirm that ' aliens ' do roam and have made Malaysia truly their ' home '.

Ms UnicornGirl

EdiÁ•ě said...

Home no more...

home is away

BN will survive... they will use all this money to win the next GE

Ping said...

Soon the Chinese will be foreigners in their own land but at least they can still enjoy their Char Koay Teow and drive their car around. Singapore attracts brains from Malaysia but here in Bolehland we put cart before the donkey.

The Angry Medic said...

OMG Zewt, you're still alive! And blogging! (I can hardly judge, I'm so lazy I have sloths protesting outside my house saying I give them a bad name)

Haha just dropped by to see how you were, old pal. Yep I recently came home as well, things have certainly changed - but I just feel old. (I'm not old okay. I'm still young. And ridiculously handsome.)

Keep blogging bro - I'll be back to stalk.

Terra Shield said...

Funny that you mention that. My next door house had a bunch of foreigners living in it for a short while. Before that the house behind mine.

amoi said...

so whats so bad abt foreigners?

i rather be served by the foreigners like bangla, cambodia, even keling pun tapah, in KFC, at least with low pay they wont run amok.

abang zewt, next time u become boss, dun forget to hire those foreigners, they are cheap and good. :D

TzeThon said...

no surprise that someone like you (who doesn't come back often) would notice the so called transformation. for people who live in KL we can also see the difference these days.

every day and night for the past 3 months and above. there are hundreds and hundreds (or maybe thousands) of indonesians gather outside the indon embassy to get their mykad (or whatever documents that are allowing them to stay in malaysia maybe forever). you can imagine the outrage and frustration we feel. the traffic and the plain chaos.

of course the problem is not only due to indonesians. other immigrants as well.

i'm so jealous of you. leaving this place without looking back.

dancingbunny said...

well, singapore is also infested as well...I feel the way you feel, all the time.

globalisation said...

I guess what you are feeling now is what "white" people in Western countries felt when they saw their neighbourhood slowly being infested by "slit-eyes, yellow skin" chinky from the far east.

ZACL said...

Hello,

Delighted to see you have resurrected yourself.

I read your feelings and perceptions of home. I could seriously empathise with you. I too feel like a stranger with familiarity, but with broken links in 'my own land' when I visit it.

Take care.

zewt said...

Jun - yeah... it's sad isnt it?

Tsu Lin - unfortunately, things look to get worse...

Constantly craving joe - you must have stayed in a very posh area :)

Amanda Christine Wong - oh yeah, i know the happenings in the east... the infestation is worse... you guys should really fight for a change.

Sophie - your home state?

Ms UnicornGirl - on a different perspective, some of these aliens do make an effort to blend in well.

Edi - couldnt agree more.

Ping - hahaha... by the time, charkueyteow not cooked by us anymore.

The Angry Medic - hahahaha good to hear from you!!! yes i am alive! we are certainly old pal... you are one of the earliest blogs i visited!

Terra Shield - have they been made malaysians yet?

amoi - i think there is a difference between hiring them, and legalising those are illegal.

Tze Thon - i do look back, else i wont be posting stuff like these... :) hard to not look back.

dancingbunny - the difference is... singapore is infested by educated ppl (mostly at least).

globalisation - hahaha... precisely.... karma.

ZACL - hi there... always good to see your perspective. i guess it's a global phenomena... everywhere is the same... but we need to control the immigration. at the moment, there is no control here.

William said...

The Australian government had been keen to se d illegal immigrants to Malaysia and signed a deal with Najib years ago. The deal fall apart due to Aussie court rule that stopped it.

CJane said...

i feel you. come to sabah and you'll see worse. i was at the hot spring in ranau 2 weeks ago: the last time i was there as a child, i remember it being a nice place filled with friendly people.

but now? they're infested with the 'others' ..every freaking pool are occupied by them. they even spit inside the pool like it's their father's backyard pool. sigh.