Perth, Australia 2014 – Overview

My wife, Livia and I visited Melvin and Tania’s abode at Perth after Christmas. Melvin is one of my hengtais during my wedding and we knew each other since we were 15.

They migrated over there couple of months ago. They now live in a place called Secret Harbour which is about 40 minutes away from Perth City.

Secret Habour. Most houses around here are single storey.

Although we arrived after Boxing Day, the city was a little bit dead. Most of the shops were closed and the streets were pretty empty.

We spent some time in the city before meeting up with Melvin and Tania. We didn’t want Livia to travel too much (she can’t sit still!). We stayed at Sheraton Hotel and got a pretty good room thanks to our friend Elaine of Luxenomad.

Livia was very pleased with the room.

We got a free upgrade thanks to Luxenomad and also a baby cot. The room was spacious and comfortable. They even supplied us with a bathtub for us to bath Livia.

Victorian building at Perth City

A street in Perth City

Saw this while walking to the city from our hotel

Perth City at night

It was our first time travelling with Livia on such a long journey. But the journey there was pleasant. Livia was in a good mood but did cry a little bit. She has this habit of staring at strangers and then smiling whenever they look back.

Livia poo-pooed in the plane once. We changed her in the airplane toilet. It has a baby diaper changing table. Things I didn’t realise until I became a parent.

We got Livia a bassinet. We had to top up RM300 for the seat. We also got free Heinz baby food.

I’ve always enjoyed flying over Australia. The view from the top is amazing.

The weather was scorching hot during the day but cool at night. We literally had to bath in sun tan lotions. Livia became tanned too especially after spending a day at the beach. Livia loved the beach. She crawled around the sand and played with the water (and even tried drinking it!).

Another couple, William and Rachael, stayed with Melvin and Tania at the same time. It felt like my university days when I had 7 other housemates. It was like a party everyday. W & R were having their honeymoon in Perth and we traveled around together. They were quite good with Livia. Wife and I could rest a bit while they play with Livia.

Livia and W. Livia doesn’t really like strangers carrying her but W & R were exceptions.

Most of the attractions of Perth are outside Perth City. We made couple of road trips around Perth on a 7-seater KIA Van which Melvin rented (all of us chipped in for the rental).

Livia however didn’t enjoy the ride on the van much. She doesn’t like to be strapped down on the car seat. Wife had to distract her with food.

Melvin cooked us delicious food throughout the stay. He made us breakfast and dinner. He’s a good cook hence food was always tasty (and he just started a new job as a cook!). He even made us kangaroo burgers!

Livia was pleased with the food

Roasted pork!

Mushrooms and Hainanese chicken.

Barbecue was in our menu too.

After 7 days in Perth, we made our trip home. Melvin fetched all of us to the airport. Tania came back with us to Malaysia leaving Melvin alone in Perth. His home was no longer the lively home he saw for the past 7 days. But I guess he’ll be glad that we left him once he saw his electricity and gas bills.

The journey back home was terrible though. Our 2:30AM flight was disastrous because Livia was screaming and crying. She refused to sleep on her bassinet hence my wife had to carry her to sleep. My wife barely slept. Lesson learnt: Don’t take midnight flights when travelling with a baby!

Kuala Lumpur Bar Committee 2015/2016

In 2013, I had to stand for election to get into the Kuala Lumpur Bar Committee. It was my first time trying and I had go against 13 candidates. I managed to squeeze into the 10-men general committee.

Last year, I got into the committee against but there was no vote as we had exactly 10 people running for general committee.

However, this year, we had 3 people running for chairman and 11 people running for general committee! It triggered an election. The 3, Amir, Peter and Ravin, who ran for chair were also former committee members.

Each of them were given chance to speak. Amir came out with a powerpoint slide and even sang for the crowd! Peter on the other hand gave a powerful speech on how he would improve the KL Bar and how he would go on the ground to solve problems. Ravin presented his visions and plans for the KL Bar for each committee.

There was also some heavy lobbying going around to garner votes. It was the first time I see campaign being run on WhatsApp and Facebook. I was a little bit worried that I won’t get in as I didn’t do any lobbying or even announcing my candidacy on Facebook. But I knew that what matters was my 1 1/2 minute speech to the crowd. If I’m convincing enough, they may vote for me.

Many of us prepared written speeches. I did mine too. I spoke about how I will revamp the website, introduce new member management system, online payment and digitalizing KL Bar records. But as soon as I spoke, I started to hear chatters and I realise many are not listening.

Fortunately, I got voted in with the 4th highest votes (a spot which I also share with Dee Wei). Ravin was voted chairman of the Kuala Lumpur Bar taking over Dipendra who retired after 2 terms. It’s a tradition that every Kuala Lumpur Bar chairman will retire after two terms. Out of the 10 new committee members, 7 were from the previous term.

Most people left after the cast their votes (its a secret ballot). From the 200-300 over people, only 20 were left in the hall. The last item of the agenda allows any members to raise any matters and SI Rajah, a senior lawyer (called to the Bar in 1968), addressed the crowd with some of his ideas. Two of his ideas caught my attention. One being an establishment of an archive for the Bar consisting of historical information, documents and materials He had this idea after he tried to borrow a wig from the Bar Council and he couldn’t get one because the Bar Council does not keep such wigs. Interestingly, wigs were never compulsory in Malaysia. I approached SI Rajah after his speech and I said I was very interested in his archive idea. Hopefully we can work something out.

The other idea he had was an establishment of an “incubation center” by the Bar Council for young lawyers or lawyers who want to start up their own firm. He said that one of the foreign bars had this incubation center to help lawyers with their first few stages to allow them to kick start their law firm. But this idea may be difficult as the Bar Council is running out of space.

Anyway, glad to be re-elected again. Hopefully my plans can be completely rolled out by this year!