Thursday, July 26, 2007

Rhythm of the Flame

I have always love art more then science, even at school. But then in order to compete for the scholarship I took up science stream for my MCE. True enough with reasonably good result I easily got my scholarship to further my study abroad. But then science is actually the quantitative rather then qualitative part of art. It is the real rather then abstract part of art. Living is actually an art in many forms depending on one beliefs and idealism.

Now that I have done with studying and intensive working, I tend to spend more time with Art, appreciating the work of art as well as understanding the people that devoted their life to it. My scope on Art covers painting, sculpturing, music, theatre and poetry.

Among my special friend in art are Raja Azhar and Shahimah the husband & wife owner of Artcase Gallery at the Great Eastern Mall, Jalan Ampang. They are just great couple who devoted their life to art. Raja Azhar art work is always par excellence and in a dynamic mode, currently he is very much in Glass Work. My appreciation to Raja is not only limited to his art work but also his love to Shahimah that a bit handicapped due to an unfortunate incident that befallen her many years ago. Their love is abstract and beyond physical attraction. Through them I gained much knowledge in art appreciation and the reality that you can make it rich and good on whatever field you choose provided you give nothing but the best in your work.

On 11 July 2007, I attended the opening of another Art Exhibition by Raja Azhar & Shahimah at the Great Eastern Mall. The exhibition “Rhythm of the Flame “was officiated by YAB Toh Puan Mahani Idris Daim – the Founder / Chairman of Yayasan Seni Berdaftar . The participating artists includes Mark Elliot ( Australia ), Raja Azhar, B. Jane Cowie ( Australia ), Elizabeth Newman ( Aust ), Dominic Fonde ( UK ), Zuzila Zain ( M’sia ), Michelle Mayes ( UK ), Kalil Ibrahim, Rafi Ghani, Ismail Latiff, Latif Maulan and others.

Some of the shots taken for remembrance & sharing with friends. A reminder to me that it doesn’t matter what we choose in life but once chosen we must give nothing but the BEST, then life will be more fulfilling and meaningful.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Merdeka - ANGGUN 50

Beautiful poem by Datuk A Samad Said on the commemoration of Malaysia 50 years Independence.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Al Fatehah

Al fatehah to the 6 RMAF Officers that died in the Nuri crash.

I am both sad and angry that it took 5 days to find them and hope the old Nuri will be replaced once for all. Too many Nuri has crashed ... and definitely we need to equip our SAR Teams with better high technology equipment.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Missing Nuri & Crews

It has been four days of searching for the missing Malaysian Air Force Nuri Helicopter and its six crews. Today more then 1300 search and rescue (SAR) personnel from various agencies have been deployed for the SAR operations. I am really sad that we still could not find the missing helicopter and crews despite its happened only 10 minutes after leaving the Sg. Besi Air Base.

Something is definitely not right in terms of the safety and emergency system for the Helicopter. We should not allow our aircraft to fly without automatic release/ transmitting electronic positioning identification radio beacon ( EPIRB ) . The EPIRB is now mandatory to be carried on all merchant vessels and it will automatically release if the ship sink. Without it and high tech search equipment our SAR team is facing a tremendous difficulty in locating the victims.

I am sure the SAR Coordinator is using all his expertise and standard SAR procedures to find the victims but the failure until today shows that our capability in SAR is still low. The Government and RMAF must take this matter seriously – to upgrade our SAR capability and also to replace the more then 40 years old Nuri.

During my early days of heading the National Maritime SAR operations, I have flown on the Nuri on many occasions and used the helicopter on my SAR missions. The Nuri has served its time and the RMAF deserved better air craft to full fill its responsibilities in air defense and emergency missions.

It is difficult for a layman to comprehend why we failed to find the Nuri & its crews despite its happening 10 minutes from the Base. As a former SAR person I could understand the tremendous pressure on our SAR team but then we must look beyond this incident and mission to ensure we are not shamed again in future as a result of our poor capabilities.

Let’s all pray that the divine help from Allah will assists the SAR team in finding the crews alive.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Close Encounter ... A Samad Said

KLCC was unusually busy last Thursday …… 4pm on a working day the place was packed. It must me the Mega Sale at work or success of Visit Malaysia Year campaign.

As usual I will always drop by the PETRONAS Gallery whenever I have free time. I was surprised when the Gallery Director ushered me to Datuk A Samad Said as I entered the space, as if the “Sastarawan Negara” is waiting for me. I play the friendly Malaysian and shook hand with Pak Samad and wife who apparently have been waiting for more then two hours there to be interviewed by some reporter. We chat for a while on his exhibition and of course his frustration having to wait for the reporter. He must have thought I am the reporter when he first shook my hand.

Luckily the reporter and his camera crews arrived shortly after that and I gracefully excused myself to look at the Pak Samad Exhibition that on show. It was a very good exhibition by Pak Samad on his poetry, painting and writings. In fact Pak Samad takes the trouble to explain to me the process of writing his poetry i.e. a few drafts with red ink corrections before balancing the “suku kata” creating a poem with a spirit. The next step is creating a painting out of the poem. I felt very much privileged having Pak Samad explaining his work process using his work book. He did say that his method is based on his 1950s education background and not necessary followed by the new generation’s poetry writer.

That short close encounter made me understand why there is only one Pak Samad . He is a much disciplined person in his work, belief and excellence performance. Of course as we chat away we get to know each other better …. Like our common friend Wan Shukry Wan Karma and Kak Teh who were classmates to his wife. To Pak Samad and wife thanks for the close encounter ……. I hope they will never make you wait that long in future.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Asia is the place to be ....

This is one the best article being published on my views regarding Global Maritime Economy. It catch the headlines of Global Maritime News - being published by more then a dozen International Business Media. It's really worth the research effort I made on the paper. The write up below was published by Taipei Times ........ One of the reason Jaff Point is launched is to ensure I keep writing and to keep my blogger friends Ancient Mariner & Tampin Linggi company.
DOMINANT PLAYER: Asia is the place to be, and analysts say the rise of China's economy is doing more to boost intra-regional trade than harm local operators
AFP, KUALA LUMPUR Tuesday, Aug 03, 2004, Page 10
"Over 430 new container berths are required in Asia-Pacific region to handle container traffic in 2011, at an estimated cost of US$27 billion."

Jaffar Lamri, president of the Malaysian Maritime Institute Asia's shipping trade is expected to grow sharply led by China and India, but the region must enhance security and invest some US$27 billion to build over 430 new container berths by 2011 to meet rising demand, shippers and analysts said yesterday.

China's booming economy and its emergence as the world's second top container market will boost intra-regional trade, rather than threaten the growth of other Asian ports, they said at a two-day maritime conference in Kuala Lumpur. The Malaysian Maritime Institute president Jaffar Lamri said Asia remained the dominant player in the global shipping industry, with its container trade projected to grow at an annual average rate of seven percent between 2000 and 2007. Eleven Asian ports are already among the world's top 20 ports, and contributed 46 percent of the world's total container boxes of 20-foot-equivalent-units (TEUs) throughput, he said. By 2011, he said Asia was expected to handle 206.7 million TEUs, including 64 million in transshipment and this required large port investments to cope with the growth. "Over 430 new container berths are required in Asia-Pacific region to handle container traffic in 2011, at an estimated cost of US$27 billion," Jaffar told the forum. He said China was emerging as the world's second-largest container market in line with its economic boom and growing trade with the US, while India was a "sleeping Bengal tiger" that would be a major player if it awakens.
"China and India are leading the industry but I think smaller countries are developing their own niche markets. I don't think China's growth will be a threat to the region. Volume is growing and the industry is big enough for everybody," he said, adding that Indonesia and Thailand have strong growth potential. Worldwide, he said container traffic was projected to grow from 87.1 million TEUs last year to 94.4 million this year and to 104 million next year. By 2010, it is expected to hit 400 million to 460 million TEUs and 510 million to 610 million in 2015.

Ashwin Pavan, regional commercial general manager for shipping giant Maersk Sealand International, said China was an important market for shippers and Maersk has positioned a large fleet in the country to tap the boom. "I don't see China as a threat to Southeast Asia but its growth will help to boost intra-regional trade," he told reporters on the sidelines of the conference. Maersk views Thailand and Vietnam as high growth markets but Indonesia's potential is dampened by its weak security enforcement, he said. "Security is a big concern and has been underplayed by shippers. There is a slowly growing awareness among regional governments on the need to improve security but it is still not where it is supposed to be," he said.

Earlier, Malaysia's Transport Minister Chan Kong Choy, in his keynote address, said the government was committed to anti-terrorist measures for ports and vessels imposed by the International Maritime Organization. He said 84 out of 86 Malaysian ports and 358 Malaysian ships engaged in international trade have complied with the International Ship and Port Facility Security code, and plans were underway to establish a single port authority and tighten shipping regulations next year.
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Walk the pounds away

At last I am back to my healthy lifestyle and routine after going hay wire for the last few months. The morning brisk walking with my significant half around Tasik Cempaka about 4 km routes has been my favorite’s activities for the past few years. Somehow my new hobby "Golf" has managed to disrupt my healthy lifestyle. The pressure from colleges for me to take up golf after leaving the game about 15 years ago – really upset my routine. Actually I am quite happy with golf because it’s quite a challenge to hit the small ball over 18 holes - a lot of skill and paitence is needed. The four hours taken to complete the game provide and avenue for closer bonding between golf buddies. Now that I am able to play tolerable golf I have decided to keep my golf to minimum and catch up with my weekends brisk walking.

Actually the brisk walking not only contribute tremendously to my health and provides an effective therapy for me and wife. The one hour routine provide and excellent setting for us to communicate and talk on many issues in a pressure less environment. She will tell about her office politics, progress on research and projects and most importantly how she and kids is doing. I will usually be a good listener and provides advice on critical issues she is facing or bothering her. I will also share with her on my current issues and thoughts. But really that one hour routine followed by breakfast at our favorite’s restaurant i.e. Puteri Bongsu and Larizz provides a therapy that money can’t buy. I found out that by missing the healthy routine its not only strained our health but also our communications therapy.

I am sure my simple therapy is applicable to all of us – in our busy and hectic weekdays schedules we just seemed not be able to communicate effectively with our significant half. We are always chasing time to send children to school, tuition, groceries and watching favorites TV programs, meetings friends etc. It is important that we spent time together in a relax environment …… it can also be going to movie or window shopping etc to take up the strain from our wife which have been acting as superwomen all week.

I am not about to give up golf but will scheduled it such that I won’t miss my morning walk two weeks in a row. More driving range than the green or perhaps weekdays golfing where possible.

A picture paints a thousand words

Collecting paintings is one of my favourite hobby . Here I share one of my favourite collection by Khalil Ibrahim . Beautiful watercolor of Trengganu fishermen on the beach. The special feature of Khalil's work is that he could draw and paint as if the figure is alive and in motion. If you look and study his painting carefully most of his men figure seem to have similar shape of hands and body. This painting reside in my bedroom and I like it better every day.