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Wednesday, February 02, 2005

A Very Public Holiday

Yesterday was 1st February, City Day. Or Federal Territory Day, a public holiday for KL, Labuan and Putrajaya. When I was studying in JB, their City Day was on 1st January. (Johor does not celebrate New Year’s Day – for reason please refer to Tingkatan 2 Sejarah textbook).

Most KL people see City Day as a trade-off with Thaipusam. KL celebrates City Day but not Thaipusam, the opposite applies for Selangor. Complicated? Not really. Wait til we talk about Nuzul Quran. The important thing is that it’s a holiday. And for Malaysians, public holidays is a pretty touchy subject. In most private offices, a large portion of time in January is spent planning and talking about this matter. You’ll hear things like, “Wah, so many holidays fall on Saturday, wan. Wasted only lah” or “If I take Friday and Monday off, I get 6 days off, man!” and so on.

Last month at work, we were asked to submit our annual leave schedule. Now this is something new to some of us. How on earth are we going to plan for something 6 to 12 months from today?! My colleague, who like me, came from a contractor background commented that working with a contractor, people only talked about, not annual leave. Any mention of annual leave would probably result in a reprimand from the management.

Anyway, back to yesterday. You would think that it would have been a great idea to get some errands done around town where it was a working day. Fat chance. The whole place was jammed up with snarling traffic. With some professional maneuvering around the roads, I managed to escape to jams and get to the banks. Some of my friends who were working in PJ told me the traffic in the morning was worse than usual.

On the plus side, I have only 3 and a half working days to reach my Chinese New Year break. Woo-hoo! See? We can’t stop talking about public holidays!!


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