Pulai Baru: Finding Myself At SMK Katibas Again
|SMK Katibas: 5 years later, much has changed, but the serenity still remains.|
One that fills the soul with peace, allows the spirit to soar & provides the mind with clarity.
The plan was a 2-in-1 program at 2 longhouses. An educational event involving students in Song at one longhouse & an official event with Dato Sri Michael Manyin involving the local community at another. The dream was to demonstrate that the rumah panjai (longhouse) could be a place of learning & encourage tuai rumah (longhouse chief) to have learning programs conducted in their ruai (common room).
|SPM 1119 Tips & Tricks Session at SMK Katibas|
However, prior to arriving, I was told that the student event will be held at SMK Katibas. The day before the event, I found out that only the students of SMK Katibas would be involved. Even then, not all of the students were present because it was a Saturday during the semester break. Funny thing is the official event involving a minister was able to be held at a packed longhouse. I'm deeply saddened by this. University professors & other professionals were engaged for the underutilized student event.
|Definitely didn't expect to have my name on a monument commemorating the Gravity Feed Water System joint venture between SMK Katibas, TR Abo Dampah, & Bursa Malaysia. Thank you, kind friends, for including me.|
Anyhow, the show must go on. I did my best to help the students who were able to make it.
|Form 5 & 3 attendees at SMK Katibas|
Finding Myself AgainI admit I have been reeling from reverse culture shock & was feeling very lost prior to my return to SMK Katibas. I returned in hopes of working on impactful initiatives & making a difference. What I actually experienced was politicking, territorial-ism, red tape, apathy, mediocrity, & backbiting. I was starting to wonder if transformation was a pipe dream.
Looking over the landscape at SMK Katibas, I drew the clean, cool morning air into my lungs, as if taking the magnificent landscape in. I feel at peace once again. Memories of the place flood back into my mind. The ups & downs. I think about the many students like Katibas's in the rest of Sarawak. I think about how left behind we are in Malaysia & the world. If I do nothing, what is going to happen to them? A lost generation. Without the busyness of life, I found a moment of clarity. I have to soldier on.
Years ago, SMK Katibas was where I found my purpose as a teacher. Once again, I found myself here in this land. Katibas will always have a special place in my heart.
|Thank you for making my SPM talk at SMK Katibas possible, Hazelynn Rimbar, MESTR, SMK Katibas, & PPD Song!|