The Sky never was the Limit...with God

Ramblings and reflections of one growing in stature and wisdom and in his walk with God :)

9:11 PM


Etched by Isaac

Brickfields cendol. The stall outside the 7-Eleven. Still as good in taste and amount as always, albeit with a higher price (RM2/2.60) small/large. I maintain that this is the BEST cendol in Malaysia, beating out both Penang and Malacca. Yes, I am prepared for the cendol wars. =D

My past six weeks in Malaysia have been spent at home and in and out of hospitals, malls, shops, and food places. I can confidently say that in the past one year that I've been in the UK, the price of everyday stuff in KL has gone up by about 10-25%, depending on the exact item. Nowadays, RM50 doesn't last very long. =/

"The good old days..."

The preacher, Bishop Mosa Sono had very many excellent points in his sermon which I had the privilege to attend, but one which has stuck in my head till now (amazing actually) is this - "...the good old days are OVER!!" 

See, I've always been the nostalgic type, so those words hit me particularly hard, especially in the current times when reality bites - money isn't what it used to be, friends and circumstances have changed, family and self are slowly, but surely ageing, and medicine, or rather, the idea of medicine, seems to be a faint shadow of what it used to be.

Time to move on?
I guess so.

Or maybe not - the current heat of affairs in the UK, led by the cohorts of junior doctors (read: all doctors below the level of consultant) dismayed and angered by the upcoming forced contract, has somewhat convinced me that yes, there are still good men and women out there who will stand united for the truth they believe in - that despite all they shoulder, they still care about the bigger picture. They are pushing for a move forwards, not backwards. As an outside observer stuck in the chasm between Malaysia and the UK, I find it comforting that there are still outlets there for them to voice their frustrations, without being immediately shut down.

The UK has its own share of frustrations with its government. Here in Malaysia, we are no different. Talk about green grass. After completing my elective posting, I have had sufficient time to gather enough information to come to the conclusion that the house officers in Malaysia are overworked and heavily burdened, but at least they are paid well above the minimum wage, which isn't the case in the UK. But then again, here we have to carry out our duties in a mix of at least three languages (my goal of Years 4 and 5 is to learn Mandarin), the career progression path here is a tad murkier, bureaucracy is tougher on us, and public awareness of health is lesser (although better public awareness doesn't always translate into better compliance or preventative measures against bad health).

When we meet up, my friends and I inevitably discuss the progressively burdensome problem of "HOW to buy a house when the prices are SO high??". Unfortunately, we have no good answer. The other frequent topic which pops up is the rising cost of living, and local happenings, besides the mandatory updates on each others' lives. I have realised that we do exactly what we saw ''old'' people do last time: meet up, drink tea, and chit chat, and nothing but that (okay actually sometimes we play badminton, or walk around malls, but still, yeah).

Now that I have but slightly over two weeks remaining of my time in Malaysia, planning has become quite important. I think I've already covered most of what I intended to do, which is awesome. A trip down to Seremban is probably in the works, as well as a few other meet-ups here and there, but besides that, it's just time well spent at home with family. I don't know whether I'll be back here next year. Considering the flight ticket fees, and the fact that there will not be a second elective posting, most likely not.

Part of what I have left to do is to clean up the links on the sidebars of my blog - most people stopped blogging a long time ago - I should reorganise the links to reflect the current times. Sad, yes, I know. I also have yet to organise my digital collection of items. I have to do this soon. Procrastinating too much. I'm gonna land in the UK just about 24 hours before the first session of 4th year. Jet lag is going to hit me hard but ah well. Can't really change the ticket dates now, plus with the haze, there's the possibility of my flight being delayed (which is a bad bad thing so nope hopefully not).

Sometimes my blog posts make sense, and sometimes they don't. This time, there was dinner in the middle, so it's most likely that this post lacks a clear sense of direction. I don't know. There's a huge part of me that yearns for the days of yore, but the other half slaps some sense into me and says, "Move on,". God is the great "I Am", not "I was" or "I will be". That's one thing I will keep my mind on.

I often throw my friends the question - "If you could change one thing about your life so far, what would it be?". It's interesting that it's a question that really makes them think for some time, and that most of them say they wouldn't change anything about it. For myself, I wouldn't either. There's just too much to be thankful for, even if my current outlook on life is a lot less positive than when I was a bright-eyed boy leaving secondary school. Even my more cynical self can't deny how good God has been. Surely He must have some reason for keeping me alive, and so I don't get to leave Earth just yet. Just a bit longer... I guess. Sounds morbid, but this form of humour is pretty common amongst medical students. Or at least those I tend to hang around with. Okay, maybe it's just me.

Realising that what Dr. Subra said a long time ago about Medicine was totally true - "Too much of anything is good for nothing," - I've come up with my slightly modified version, "Everything in moderation, including moderation,".

I will try to catch up with posts from the past, as previously planned, but these will be of lower priority compared to current updates. The struggle is real. But for now, off to watch the Chinese drama with mummy! Such a luxury, being able to sit on the sofa, just watching TV. Something I should have done more of last time. Ah well. Times have changed. Also, when a family member is hospitalised, one's life priorities get realigned really quickly. Thank God it's all good now. As a medical student, I tend to forget that most people don't usually go to hospitals, and that their experience there is more towards being scary than being educational.

I hope to help institute change. I just need many more to stand firm with me. We shall improve Malaysian healthcare - let it be the best it can be. We have work to do. Time to do it.

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