Malaysia has lots of shopping malls. Within these malls, children’s playgrounds are also springing up. They can certainly be a place to keep your children occupied while you shop. However, within these playground areas lurk an unseen danger.
Microbes transmitting diseases often lurk in abundance, clinging to the paraphernalia associated with these places. The swings, the carousel, the slides, the ball pool and the list is endless. The chances of picking up a nasty infection from these places is rather high.
Playgrounds are not monitored by the authorities for cleanliness. Eateries and even kindergartens are often under scrutiny, but these public play areas has escaped strict surveillance. Many do not even have basic precautions, for example hand scrubs. No one even knows how often these places are disinfected and cleaned.
Many parents can attest to the fact that children often can fall ill after a visit to a public playground. However, establishing a relationship between the two is almost impossible, unless an epidemic arises in a particular area.
So my advice to parents are the following.
1. Ensure that proper sanitizing facilities, e.g. hand scrubs are available at the entrance with a strict rule that all must perform a hand scrub upon entry.
2. Cleaning maintenance schedules must be publicly displayed.
3. Compulsory checks on body temperature
4. Limiting the number of children at any one time
Without these four compulsory criteria, I feel that playgrounds are flouting rules in ensuring the safety of our children from infectious diseases.
Every year when our graduates don their gowns, the fanfare, akin to an annual football cup final involving two traditional “enemies”, begins. Attracting new graduates to be part of your organisation requires a good tactical team backed up by solid resolve from those in power. Singapore seems to have gotten their act together while in Malaysia, we seem to be in disarray. Or rather the more apt word is “disinterested” or “apathetic”.
Malaysia keeps lamenting on the problems of brain drain but we are doing little to really stem the tide. It is almost as if, they actually want these bright talents to leave. Their attitudes and approaches surmount to “Good Riddance”.
Our country lacks tactical master planners. There is no foresight in their thought processes and they are just happy to exist in mediocrity. Their priorities are often misplaced or misguided.
Hence many of our brightest actually take up more lucrative, constructive, well thought out offers from across the Causeway. Who wouldn’t? As I always say, Malaysia is building castles on shifting sand. The facade of modernity is flimsy and cannot withstand the force of globalisation where meritocracy, hard work, wittiness, productivity and pure common sense are essential survival tools.
Unfortunately, our education system promotes none of this. As of now, we are being whipped by Singapore. The longer we are in denial, the tougher it would be to pull ourselves out from this rut.
We are getting our battle with dengue all wrong. Despite all the campaigning, the sight of shrewn rubbish by the roadside is a common sight. This is a classic display of total apathy of Malaysians.
They don’t really care or love the country when there is just no concern of public cleanliness. It also cements the fact the Malaysia is stuck in a third world mentality.
I fear much of it is due to an ineffective education. The concept of basic manners is no longer being taught well or at least the message is not getting across.
The current surge of dengue is a manifestation of years of total neglect about keeping Malaysia clean. We rely on foreigners to clean out country for us.
This is just pathetic!
Christmas is going to be different every year. The children would grow up and there will be no returning to the past.
The innocence now will be temporary. The pure excitement, however, is invigorating in a world filled with hatred and spite.
I will miss today, some day. Reminiscing the moments that I am about to experience. It’s a surreal thought.
Perhaps that is the magic. It’s hard to remember most things but with digital technology, these memories are immortalized.
That’s the spirit of Christmas. The ability to allow one to reflect on a positive note, to always appreciate the present as it slips slowly into the past.
Blessed Christmas everyone.