Sunday, October 03, 2010


There are times I doubt what I read from the paper, even The Economist as well. I always think it's totally cool to be able to meet the people affected by certain incidents face to face and ask them questions.

Talal: Excuse me, what is this button for?
Me: Oh, it's inclination - how steep you want your treadmill to be.
Talal: Thanks. It's my first time here.
Me: I see. Go on, increase your inclination, give it a try!
Talal: Erm.. ok *chuckled* But I'm doing this just for you.
Me: Ha.............
(second non-Chinese in 2 weeks' time?)
Me: So, where are you from?
Talal: Me? Jordan :)
Me: WOW! So do you always have wars with Israel?
Talal: Yeah, sort of. I was actually from Palestine, but moved to Jordan some years ago.
Me: *jaw-dropped* How's the situation with Israel now?
Talal: Bad. I hate them.
Me: Sigh..*feel bad* Is it possible for you to forgive them?
Talal: No. Because they just came to our land and took it from us just like that.
Me: And they kill your people, too?
Talal: Yeah, they kill our people.
Me: If the Israelites were to stop killing your people and stop advancing at the borders, will you forgive them?
Talal: *pause* For me, yes.
Me: Wow.. :)
Talal: Are you a Chinese or Malay?
Me: *smile* I'm a Malaysian.
Talal: Oh, MALAYsian. *noded*I ask because the Malaysian Chinese have never heard of Palestine.
Me: HUH?! Wait! Really?!
Talal: Yeah, they don't know where Palestine is and have never heard of the name!
Me: But I am a Chinese! *defensive, haha*
Talal: Oh wow, and you've heard of Palestine and Jordan and Israel and West Bank? That's cool.

Seriously, Malaysian Chinese, what have you guys been telling our Middle Eastern friends, huh?

After the gym, the both of us ended up at a Middle Eastern restaurant called The Roof in Bukit Bintang area. Talal recommended it, and it serves good Yemeni food. If we sit at the open air tables, we can have a good view of the busy street from top of the building (roof top bah). Then he bumped into a friend at the restaurant, Rami, and the three of us had our dinner together.

The best part was, both of them were from Palestine, with Rami stays there longer than Talal. And they told me the situation in Palestine: Hamas who supported by Russia and Iran, is now controlling Gaza, while Fatah being the puppet of US is controlling West Bank. They neither support Hamas nor Fatah. Because to them, Hamas is just flying the Islamic flag but are not true Muslims in their heart. While Fatah, well, they're just useless when it comes to standing up for the people when US takes advantage of them.

And Russia + Iran support Hamas because US supports Fatah. In other words, the war between Israel and Palestine were for the piece of Holy Land. But it's now become a war FOR another war - who cares about Jerusalem now? The real victims are Palestinians AND Israelites, and the residents in that region.

We also discussed many other random topics about each other's countries. One thing that shocked me the most was:

It's best if they (Muslim) were to marry to another Muslim. If they were to marry with non-Muslims, they're more encouraged to marry with Jews and Christians than with people of other religions. Because they all believe in the same God. Still, the Muslim spouse has the responsibility to continue to convince and NOT force his spouse and children to convert to Islam. If they never seem to be converting, the Muslim spouse has to keep on trying. That's totally not the story we hear in Malaysia. Rami says it's in the Al-Quran. He seriously said that. As I heard this, I forgotten to breathe for 20 seconds.

Eventually, their friends dropped by the restaurant to hang out as well. And a few of them joined our table, and they all spoke in Arabic which I couldn't make sense of. But I enjoyed it nonetheless. I was surrounded by a language (no, in fact, is a total different culture!) I did't have much exposure of, it's totally so cool to just stared at them and be amazed.

Soon, I told them that I needed to leave because I wished to rest early tonight. Talal volunteered to send be back my condo.

It's a total random evening in KL which makes me hate to leave KL even more. How often do I get to jump into randomness this often again?? And I enjoyed the food, the culture, the conversations and companies I had. I have not meet enough people in this city to call myself a resident here, and now I'll be moving in 5 days time :(

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