Well, another week of MOE (ministry of education course), with 2 nights at my favorite campsite - Tiloi island, where one can relax in the evening on the beach and watch the sunset or the clouds above Gunung Raya, the high point of Langkawi island. Energy levels fairly good. My back has been giving me no problems recently... highliting an Cairns chiropractor's advice : use it or loose it. I am slowly getting physically stronger due to the course - more muscle definition, lost quite a bit of weight around my waist - had some serious love handles there which I gained during my stay with my father 2 years ago. I started taking vitamin supplements (a variety of them ) during the course a little while ago - as the food really isnt all that good: a lot of white rice, quite a bit of fish and crab balls (healthy), a smattering of overcooked vegetables.
I also make porridge for myself every morning with my small solid fuel cooker. one of the poorest breakfasts is on day 1, when the kids are expected to function on a few slices of white bread and jam (yes you read that right). it really makes u appreciate the quality of such courses in Oz, where nutrition is far better, and kids get morning and afternoon tea with fruit (as opposed to tea biscuits , when they are lucky here). we get one or 2 fruit a day, mostly - not too bad.
Got of course a bit earlier than others on thursday morning, to have my wisdom tooth pulled out... turned out really fine. I was warned it could take up to 2 hours. But in fact it took 20 minutes. Had a local anaesthetic and the efficient chinese dentist lady pulled it out with some twisting. Gad. well thats that over with ! it had been giving me occasional serious pain, as it was rotting. Both wisdom teeth had grown sideways, and the other one will need pulling out later. cost 60 ringit , including prescription drugs = 20 aus$ ... wow.
At the dentist, I talked to a French couple who were here in a yacht. have been yachting for the last 20 years and know Malaysia very well. They were in their 60s. They said that in the last 15 years there has been a very noticeable rise in "integrisme" on Langkawi - ie Islamic fundamentalism. I asked them how this was felt, they said - in a distance towards them , in the increase of women with headscarves, in the large increase of signs in arabic writing.
Apparently other Malaysian places, such as nearby Alor Star or Penang (50% chinese population) are much more liberal.
This all comes from Saudi Arabia - which is gleefully exporting one of the most medieval and intolerant of all Islamic creeds: Wahabism - which says that the entire planet should be converted to islam, by choice and the use of force. Petrodollars and a miserable creed, creating Mc franchises all over the globe - financing Mosques, educating preachers, which in turn brainwash the populace. The French actually used the term "brainwashing". Wahabist franchises In Indonesia, Malaysia, Phillipines, France, the UK, Australia... all more or less covertly supporting worlwide Islamic terrorism , with vocal encouragement, or refusal to condemn, and with cash.
I read recently that the FIS - the islamic front in Algeria killed 150 000 algerians, in 90s. I remember that period well - we had bombs going off in the Paris metro due to that merry bunch. so Islamic terrorism isn't just a problem for the USA - it is active virtually everywhere, and is a very big problem in Islamic countries themselves - as witnessed in Algeria, and now in Irak. There have been bombs in Malaysia, also kidnapping of westerners... I knew of this before coming here. And As I said to my mother, don't pay a ransom for my liberation if I get kidnapped - I want to know the bastards can't use me to finance their murders and nihilism. And I don't want Al Jazeera and other advertising agencies for Islamic terrorism to use me for their little media circus showing the kidnapped on TV. Let it be known I will not be payed for, then They will kill me and hopefully not bother with telvised pleas. The British hostage was a case in point - whereas US relatives of kidnapped quietly acknowledged that their loved one was already dead.. The British dragged it out like nobody's business, running around like headless Eurochickens giving the terrorists a great advertising venue , with the result that he was finally killed anyway...
When I was in Kuala Terrenganu, on the other side of the peninsula a few weeks ago, there were big colour posters showing 2 and 5 year olds reading the Koran out loud in front of big crowds in a kind of rock concert venue. Brainwashing alright. The kids can't even understand what they are reading, let alone debate with the preacher.