Thursday, April 12, 2007

Flora Parade, Putrajaya, Jan 27, 2007

It was 15 minutes after 0700 when I parked the Ranger at the usual place where we parked whenever we were at Putrajaya Boulevard for the Merdeka Parade. The parade was scheduled to start at 0800 and by my standard we were late.As expected there weren’t many vehicles parked at the place and in fact I was expecting less crowd compared to the Merdeka Parade. Kak Cik and I walked the Boulevard towards the Palace of Justice and with a camera each we shot at will at whatever we fancied. I was searching for the shot but sadly until the end I could not get any, at least one that I really can be proud off. I guess it was not that I was losing my edge but more of getting myself familiar with my new Nikon.

I was right the parade merry people were less but decent in numbers. The other difference was there wasn’t any barrier put up by the organizer to separate us from the procession. Whatever it is Malaysian sense of timing was the order of the day yet again when the parade started way beyond 0800. The delay partly contributed by the unnecessary speeches compounded by a politician who could not give a decent speech.

As it was a Flora Parade it started with a colorful dance and we became photographers more that parade revelers. Crowd started to build up behind us while we were waiting for the parade to start. Behaving like a true Malaysia crowd most of them started to push everyone in front forward and many actually just simply squeezed themselves through inconsiderately trying to get a better view. I only managed to be patient for a while as once I could not a decent shot I became and behave like a true photographer albeit without an official photographer’s tag. I told Kak Cik to stay where she was and jumped over the crowd to join the parade to take photos. Obviously my act was not being taken lightly by the RELA personnel maintaining orders. They were doing it from different perspective I must add, not to the benefit of us watching and enjoying the parade but more just to make sure we were behind certain invisible line. I knew it was their job but adding few brains into it would make it more palatable for all. Some of us may not be professional or official photographers but we know our stuff no less and some decency and leniency from the menders would be good. At one instance, getting fed up with their continuous instruction, I just walk to the middle of the parade and started shooting. For number of times the menders faces kept coming into my view finder. Didn’t they know I could see the floats coming? I was not the stupid to be squashed by them.

Coming back to the parade I was actually a bit disappointed with it as nothing really different or spectacular about it. Just about 14 floats passing by separated by almost the same number of marching bands. In the end all was not lost for me as the flowers and colors changed my mood.

The parade ended almost on schedule and by that time the crowd got thinner as the heat and not so interesting floats got to most of them. Kak Cik and I of course patiently waited till the end. I took around 200 shots that day and still could not satisfy me.

We walked back towards the exhibition area with the crowd and as I was walking I could see a cameraman with a newsman was interviewing somebody. I did not think much of it until the newsman turned around and pointing at our direction. I was very sure he was pointing at someone behind us but I was wrong. He came straight at me introduced themselves as from TV3 and started to ask me a question. They actually wanted my comments of whether Putrajaya is a good tourist site and they wanted me to answer in a specific way. I immediately felt that they had their own agenda. I did not ask what program they were taping for but I just answered the way I want it to be answered. As I said I did not asked what program it was and until now I am still wondering.

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