Brisbane Flood


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(An aerial view of the submerged runway at Rockhampton airport on January 6, 2011 in Rockhampton, Australia – Photo by Jonathan Wood/Getty Images)

The last time I saw something similar is when I was flying over from Dubai and we had to stop at Dhaka on transit. Bangladesh had seen one of the worst monsoon season just couple of days earlier and as we neared the capital, all we could see is brown, murky water.

There were patches of land, occasionally on the sea of water and there was people, cattle and everything that the people managed to save in time on this small patches of land. In fact, there was way too much water all around us, I thought we just going to pass over the airport. At the end, we did land but I realized that the airport is only part of the land that was not flooded.

We were even surprised to see a long line of passengers waiting for the plane – some even boarded with wet clothes and bags and a sad face that explains it all – leaving the loved ones with an uncertain future whilst they fly away from the flooded city. Due to the worsening flood, we did not wait for long and soon we were back on air, leaving the flooded country with a sense of relief.

Brisbane fared slightly worse with the runaway sticking up like a sore thumb but things are still bad over there with 200,000 people affected. Back at home, we have not been doing too good either.

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First Day NaNoWriMo 2009


snow

(Photos – Snow peaked mountains on the way to work)

I guessed I fared better this than last year…

Despite not having a firm plot for this year, I have managed to complete almost 3,600 words on the first day itself. As I keep writing, I managed to get more ideas on how to expand the the current plot.

The mountains around Tehran have already showing signs of snow fall. So if winter comes up earlier, then staying at home means more time to churn out for words for my novel. I just need to make sure I am not distracted by other activities – such as curl up in thick blanket and sleep.

(To be continued)

When Government think is the best time to reveal the daily API?


AQI-Chart_20-1wttwsm

(Air Pollution Index – why is is being kept secret when it is crucial in informing the citizen on the actual condition of the air pollution in the country. Image source: http://pdsblogs.org)

There is a lot quarters crying out to the Government for the API reading and the DPM confidently inform that the Government has no plans to release the API reading. Luckily Pak Lah had a better sense of rakyat’s feeling and decided to lift the ban on API reading with immediate effect.

Now the ban is uplifted, Jeff Ooi has a good question on where to check the API readings. So, the upliftment of the ban may still have some teething problems. We are not out of the woods yet.

The question is why keep the readings as a secret in the first place? You can hide the readings but you cannot hide the haze. Assuming Pak Lah did not do the sensible thing, would the Government been agreed to reveal the API reading only after these things happened?

1. A MAS 777 with 350 passenger crashes in KLIA due to poor visibility and the death toll was high (The stewardess was unfortunately had little time to throw down the tray and knell down to pray. It happened too fast).

2. Two large oil tankers collides near Port Klang due to poor visibility and sank causing one of the biggest oil spills to hit Malaysia shores (Indonesia shores was surprisingly spared of this disaster)

3. Thousands of school children in several schools was warded in the hospital for severe breathing problem as their school was unaware the severity of the air pollution (a case of “tak apa” from the school officials and education authorities)

4. 50 cars piled up along Federal Highway near the Istana Negara due to poor visibility (another 20 cars piled up on the other side of the road when some of them slowed down to see the accident)

5. The national productivity drops by almost 50% due to too many people calling in sick or slowed down (count me in into the statistics)

6. Tun Mahathir holds a press conference on the API issue and…(well you all know rest of the story)

Luckily the API reading was revealed before such things happened. In case, you want additional information, you can check visibility observation reports here.