Tok Mun starting her campaign

Well. This fiesty old lady never ceases to amaze me. Maimun Yusof (or Tok Mun) has started her campaign, according to The Star. RM 200 for a bilik gerakan and another RM 300 to fix the stairs to her dilapidated house is where her self-funded campaign money is going to that the moment. I wonder if she has people contributing to her campaign? My conversations with my friends about her over the last 24 hours has been a mixture of amusement and maybe bordering on the ridiculing. How is an 89 year old grandmother going to sustain herself if she gets elected? Where is her support structure? Those are indeed valid questions but maybe a little bit of simplicity and even naivety could be good for us all. Besides, the romance of the underdog against the established David versus Goliath thing has always appealed to me.

Portraits Of Cambodia

Portraits Of Cambodia

I love this image. The colours have popped out very nicely and the background is very ‘rusty’. This was part of a series of shots I took of the kids in Cambodia. They were lining up one after another and I told them to just squat down and look at the camera. It was mid afternoon and the sun was blazing so I had to be careful with the lighting. The sunlight bounced of the ground under me to the girl who was in a shade and she was standing about 3 feet from the wall behind here. I really enjoyed taking these pictures and it was so uplifting to see their reaction when they were shown their picture.

Canon EOS 30D EF 70-200mm f/2.8 at 110mm
f/2.8 1/200th ISO 100 Aperture Priority

Introducing Maimun Yusof

The Malaysian Election will be held on March 8 2008. The parties have started campaigning and posters, flag, billboards and signages have already plastered the city of KL (and I suspect other places as well). All this makes for good drama and news but to me, the best (and perhaps the most compelling) piece of news is 89 years old grandmother Maimun Yusof decision to run as an independent for a parliamentary seat in Terengganu.

This is a poor woman who has spent her life savings on the nomination fee (RM 10000). Here is a woman who has spent another RM 3000 on 1000 posters for her campaign. This is a woman who rides an old beaten up red bike telling people to vote for her Parti Kunci (the Key Party). The stacks are all against here with the opponents being seasons opposition. Its impossible for her not to know that the chances of her winning are next to nothing and yet she still does it. Why? To get publicity? To have a laugh? To spice up what could be a dreadful life. No. In her own words,

‘I may be old, poor and uneducated, but I know that I am making a right choice standing in the election as I want to see things change before I die’.

Maimun Yusof Campaigning
Image taken from the Star

I really can’t help but think that this woman put us all to shame. We talk and complain and rant rave about how things should be different and how things should change but what are we doing to change it? Would we put our life savings on the line? Whenever I think of Maimun Yusof, I get overwhelmed by a combination of shame and admiration. Thank you Maimun for the stirring you have given me……

Hello Again

I haven’t been writing for a long time. I’d like to say I’ve been busy but the truth is I was taking a break. My photography has taken a major reshuffle. I’ve sold off a lot of equipment to finance new ones. I was even looking into switching from Canon to Nikon but have decided against it (because I’ll still face the same issue described later). Having said that, I am still looking into radical change of gears. The equipment is just getting too heavy these days and I long for the days of being able to focus on the image rather than focussing on the equipment. The 1 D Mark III, as wonderful as it is, is just too heavy nowadays. Put a EF 24-70mm f/2.8 or the 70-200mm f/2.8 on the 1D Mark III and you have the hallmarks of a big workout. Am looking at the Leica M8 but the IR issue is still a worry for me.  But still, the India pictures were generally good although I messed up a few places here and there. Where is the next destination? Not sure yet but the yearning to take pictures is still very strong in me provided I can solve this nagging heavy equipment issue.