The ads promoting “Malaysia: Truly Asia” aim to welcome visitors with a warm smile to a prosperous and modern nation, so the taxi fleet branded “the worst in the world” can come as a bit of a shock.

Even the locals are not spared the shabby service of unkempt and hostile drivers behind the wheels of decrepit vehicles who refuse to use the meter, overcharge and pick-and-choose which destinations they will travel to.

At the popular KLCC mall under Kuala Lumpur’s iconic Petronas Twin Towers is a typical scene, as a gang of cabbies negotiate with a young Norwegian couple just metres from a signboard warning against “taxi touts”.

“Flat rate, flat rate, no metre,” one driver insists as the tourists try to find a cab to take them to their hotel, less than two kilometres (1.2 miles) away.

Anxious to escape the baking heat, they agree to pay 25 ringgit (7.22 dollars) for a trip that would have cost less than three ringgit on the meter.

“Is it expensive? We don’t know, we thought it is normal here,” said the woman as they piled in with their shopping bags.

More frequent visitors, however, are vocal in their criticism and say that aggressive and unprofessional drivers are tarnishing the nation’s image as a squeaky clean and hospitable destination.

“I first visited Malaysia in 2006 and I was impressed by everything I saw except for the worst taxi service I have endured,” said Kabir Dali, an Indian tourist waiting in vain for a metered taxi at another mall.

“I paid a whopping 260 ringgit (74 dollars) from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport to town and was later told that was twice the proper amount.”

Complaints about taxis are common in many countries, but in Malaysia it has escalated to an outpouring of frustration, on blog sites and in letters to newspapers.

In a survey by the local magazine The Expat, some 200 foreigners from 30 countries rated Malaysia the worst among 23 countries in terms of taxi quality, courtesy, availability and expertise.

The respondents lashed the fleet as “a source of national shame” and “a serious threat to tourists — rude bullies and extortionists”.

Salvation is in sight though, as a number of smaller, up-scale operators enter the market to provide a more expensive but quality taxi service for frustrated visitors and locals.

The uniformed drivers, behind the wheels of smart new multi-purpose vehicles and sedans, switch on the meter as a matter of course and do not refuse destinations — surprising and delighting commuters in the capital.

Abdul Razak, operations manager for Dubai-based Citicab which launched here in January, said that even in poorer nations such as Thailand and Indonesia, taxis are smarter and the drivers far more courteous.

“I would say it is the worst in this region, undoubtedly. I have travelled to all countries in this region and our company operates taxis in many parts of the world. The situation here is the worst I have seen,” he told AFP.

“The vehicles are in shabby condition, the driver will take you if he likes your face — that is, if he agrees with where you want to go for the price he insists on.”

The government has called on taxi firms to lift their standards, but various campaigns have achieved little, and many blame the lack of enforcement on rampant corruption in the police and bureaucracy.

“It is difficult for the roads and traffic department to take stern action,” said a security officer at one city mall as he watched the touts swoop.

“Taxi operators and the company which hold the licences are all linked to some politician or another,” he said. “Drivers here are ruthless because they are unchecked by authorities who are almost non-existent.”

John Koldowski, from the Pacific Asia Travel Association, said that “less than desirable” taxi drivers have an outsize impact on a nation’s image.

“The first contact a tourist gets with locals is often during airport transits to hotels and it creates a very, very strong first impression, either be good or bad,” he said.

“Authorities certainly need to do their jobs and act upon any complaints strongly, quickly and visibly.”

Sourced from msn news.

Malaysia… BOLEH?

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All I have is a voice
To undo the folded lie,
The romantic lie in the brain
Of the sensual man-in-the-street
And the lie of Authority
Whose buildings grope the sky:
There is no such thing as the State
And no one exists alone;
Hunger allows no choice
To the citizen or the police;
We must love one another or die.

– W.H Auden

.sorry this is random ._. i just need to let off some pent of pek-chek ness

              I have something to say, and its definitely not easy to say it, neither is it to write for this might change the perception of a few people I know that despise cigarettes and maybe myself; for being a smoker.

              Starting way back when in National Service, my camp was one of the best camps in Malaysia. Being brand new and shiny , the facilities were nothing to wow at. However, when the sundry shop opened up, my pocket money wasn’t enough and I resorted to smuggling in cigaretts to sell to people at an amazing RM3 per stick. At that time I was wondering ” why do these people waste so much just for one cigarette?” . Now I know. When I was in National Service, I started smoking to entertain the people that bought cigarettes from me, because no one would buy if they had known you didn’t smoke yourself. For example, would you buy something from someone who knows nothing about something he’s selling? NO!. Definitely. So it started, and went on, and on, and on. Till I ended my National Service.

               It didn’t stop there, my peers started smoking in National Service too! Dang. To top it all up, we started smoking together, from a pack of 14’s to a pack of 21’s a week. Once in the morning, once after school; our daily routine. It was still control-able at that moment. Little did I know , I was about to lose the little control that I had over my habit. The 1 pack per week went to two and then three. I realised it but somehow, did nothing to stop it, regretably.

              After a total of 6 months , I started attending church. Jelutong Methodist Church. Its great. The people are nice and friendly, conflicts are about but still, theres a calming atmostphere about. One day, my fellow smoking peer said to me. ” Lets stop” , I was like HUH? well.. okay.. if you say so. lets stop together =D and we did.

             IT HURTS. The first day. I felt like I was being deprived of food. Tired, sick, headaches and moodswings came to me. I started to reconsider. Then I realised I wasn’t about to let myself die of lung cancer at a young age and be deprived of the joys of life just because of smoke. I admitted my habit to my parents and I told them I quitted. They were supportive. It feels sucky now. My lungs hurt like its being stabbed by a porcupine from the inside, I have a fever, I have flu , my head hurts, I pee yellow pee and worst of all I sneeze every 20 seconds. I went to the clinic just to troubleshoot my condition and the doctor told me ” Congratulations, you stopped smoking. The right way. Cold turkey. Your pains are normal and they are part of the healing process of your lungs and your body. Your body hasnt had this much oxygen in a long time and the blood sugar level is low. Thats why you’re weak. Relax. Give it a few days . It’ll recover and you’ll feel much better.” he said. I smiled. 

                    Thats about it. To the people I know who hate smokers. I tried one and I stuck to it . Im sorry for doing so but I quit. Realised it was doing shit to me and my pocket. To my friends who aren’t smokers. Don’t start. DONT START. If you do, and you get addicted, I’ll say I told you so; because i did. Smoking wont kill you. It’ll kill those around you.

I was lazing around my house like always, just before the exams when suddenly I realised SHIT. I didn’t study ._. and I used to think entering form6 would make me study harder because of the pressure and stuff. The government seems to think that we “the students” are getting smarter =x I don’t know. Maybe its just me but the time period given for public exams are getting shorter.
-UPSR 6 years to prepare
-PMR 3 years to prepare
-SPM 2 years to prepare
-STPM 1 1/2 years to prepare
Shouldn’t it be harder = longer time to prepare? That would mean ofcourse losing your childhood and youth. Spending the longer time the government gives you in school. You just might come out from there in time to get married and spend the life left in you working. Unless of course you want to study on and leave university by… 50? . I’m contradicting myself =_= . nevermind

I never really took the time to look back at my life and ponder about the things that happen in it. Somehow. I finally did. Much to my dismay though.

 So many things happened in that short 18 years that made up my life. My first steps, words; first day of school. Lol. The good ol’ days. Then there came primary school. In Minden Heights. My grades used to be all A’s =p now they arent that good, but im getting by.

 A few years ago i started to realise some of my friends were like fake money. They seem to be real on the outside, but they’re not; unfortunately. I know, I know. I sound like a sour puss pouring out my feelings onto an online diary, but this is the only way I know to get it out of my system; before it explodes

. I even realised a few years ago that im always the spare, for everything. People pour out their problems when they need you. Then, they go that other way after they feel better. Sucks; don’t it? I dont know if any reader will find this post. Since it’s already been inactive for a period of time.

 National Service; thats why its been inactive. Oh, national service ! The best thing that the government has come up with so far. Thought some may think that National Service is the child killer but its not all that bad. It teaches you not to be picky about food, to appreciate what you have and make the most of it, to realise how fortunate we are living on the greener side of the world and most of all, National Service will DEFINITELY give you alot of memories to look back on in your golden days or old age; whatever way you prefer it.

Yahhhhhhh , this is definitely a long winded post. Nobody will probably find it but; I finally got it out; some of it at least. Feels better =)

Touching words from the mouths of babes.
What does ‘Love’ mean?
A group of professional people posed this question to a group of 4 to 8 year-olds, ‘What does ‘love’ mean?’
The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined. See what you think:

——————————————————————————–

‘When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore.

So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That’s love.’
Rebecca- age 8

——————————————————————————–

‘When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different.
You just know that your name is safe in their mouth.’
Billy – age 4

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other.’
Karl – age 5

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs.’
Chrissie – age 6

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is what makes you smile when you’re tired.’
Terri – age 4

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when my mummy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.’
Danny – age 7

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more.
My Mummy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss.’
Emily – age 8

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.’
Bobby – age 7 (Wow!)

——————————————————————————–

‘If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate,’

Nikka – age 6
(we need a few million more Nikka’s on this planet)

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, and then he wears it everyday.’
Noelle – age 7

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well.’
Tommy – age 6

——————————————————————————–

‘During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling.

He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.’
Cindy – age 8

——————————————————————————–

‘My mummy loves me more than anybody.
You don’t see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.’
Clare – age 6

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when Mummy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.’
Elaine-age 5

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when Mummy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.’
Chris – age 7

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.’
Mary Ann – age 4

——————————————————————————–

‘I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones.’
Lauren – age 4

——————————————————————————–

‘When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.’ (What an image!)
Karen – age 7

——————————————————————————–

‘Love is when Mummy sees Daddy on the toilet and she doesn’t think it’s gross.’
Mark – age 6

——————————————————————————–

‘You really shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.’
Jessica – age 8

——————————————————————————–

And the final one — Author and lecturer Leo Buscaglia once talked about a contest he was asked to judge.

The purpose of the contest was to find the most caring child.

The winner was a four year old child whose next door neighbour was an elderly gentleman who had recently lost his wife.

Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old gentleman’s yard, climbed onto his lap, and just sat there.

When his Mother asked what he had said to the neighbour, the little boy said, ‘Nothing, I just helped him cry’

LOVE IS ENDURING A CERTAIN SAME PAIN BUT RELENTLESSLY BEQUEATHING FORGIVENESS
by =)

Hiking, panting, running, shouting cam-whoring in the middle of the Penang National Park all the way to Pantai Kerachut was indeed a trip to remember =). Especially if you hike with the people that are closest to you.

https://i2.wp.com/bp0.blogger.com/_gZ59M-Rortk/R9TQm_-7s2I/AAAAAAAAAGo/IujvH6ye49c/s320/Image160.jpg

During the painstaking hours we took to the supposedly 2 hour hike to kerachut. Two instead of the usual lonely photo enthusiast Jess were busy taking pictures of all sorts;
https://i1.wp.com/bp3.blogger.com/_gZ59M-Rortk/R9Ta9v-7s6I/AAAAAAAAAHI/Tvjyqrxiut4/s200/Image069.jpgenthusiast

Vince and jess had a ball of a time taking pictures of everything they saw which included the elusive magic circle wand thingie that was never meant to be xD 

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To the chubi chubi circle leaves

https://i0.wp.com/photos-m.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22556_6681.jpg

And the elusive magic maple =0
https://i2.wp.com/photos-h.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22535_9256.jpg

After the much delayed arrival, and the many photo taking sessions that we had =)
I present to you. The majestic kerachut

https://i2.wp.com/photos-p.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22591_6333.jpg

And after that? We took a dip in the water where the war of the badak sumbu’s
and the shortyshorts took place o.o

https://i0.wp.com/photos-l.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22587_5148.jpghttps://i0.wp.com/photos-m.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22588_5426.jpg

Crouching dragon and hidden tiger joins to become the almighty london bridge??

Sadly after all that hiking! The calories burned were……
https://i0.wp.com/photos-g.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22598_8808.jpg

And we even met the orang plastik hitam of pantai kerachut =O
https://i0.wp.com/photos-o.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22606_1268.jpg
Which was manhandled by the.. amazing.. one of a kind!! Rachel Keng!!
https://i2.wp.com/photos-p.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22607_1578.jpg

But all good things sadly have to come to an end 😦 just for the moment though =)
And with that we left Pantai Kerachut; leaving behind our marks on the sand
https://i0.wp.com/photos-k.ak.facebook.com/photos-ak-sf2p/v194/134/20/1185428294/n1185428294_22586_4839.jpg

I’ll continue later =x Till then. Cya!!

A Chance To Start
How often we wish for another chance,
To make a fresh beginning,
To blot our mistakes,
And change failure into winnings.
 It does not take a special time,
To make a brand-new start,
It only takes deep desire,
To try with all our heart.
To live a little better,
To always be forgiving,
To add a little sunshing,
To the world that we are living.
Never give up in despair,
Never are you through,
For theres always a tomorrow,
A chance; to start anew.

A laughing face.
As I remember the times we spend besides the lake,
I just wonder, was it love or was the feeling fake?

The fun rides, beach blues and the lush garden greens,
Without you around everything is not just seen.

Giving up everything, just for your sake,
Is there anything, that you forgot to take?

Waiting up all the time besides the phone to ring,
Catching to the tunes of the songs we sing.

As my heart breaks, I try to fall asleep,
But still all our memories make me flip.

With everyday, the feeling for you gets tender,
And every moment, makes my love grow stronger.

I really couldn’t stand the pressure or the pain,
Not talking to or not seeing you, makes me go insane.

I really wished, I felt that we were still one,
do you remember, all the laughter and the fun?

Sharing my love to someone else is not my case,
So I hide my broken heart beneath a laughing face.