Thursday, February 14, 2013

I am 64 going on 65

At this age, I always remind myself that I am living on a bonus age. Everytime I open up my eyes after I fall asleep, I thank God that I am still alive. I also remind myself that I can go anytime on God's will. But I pray to God that my life will be spared for a further 20 years as I still have a lot to do, a lot to fulfill my dreams. Thank God, come 1st April I will be joining ASWARA as its Deputy Rector (Academic and Development) the same status as Deputy Vice Chancellor of any university. I promise myself to do the best of my ability to help ASWARA to be a university of excellence. But that does not mean that I love UniKL less. I cherish every moment I am there. I love my students just like I love my own children. I want them to be the best. My love for my students and pray for their success and wellbeing goes also to the thousands whom I have taught and care - from the USM days when I was a senior academic and a dean of the School of Housing, Building and Planning to the moment I was the Director of the Malaysian Students Department in London looking after around 12,000 students all over the UK and the Republic of Irelend. They are all my children, either they address me as Pak Din or Abah. I also cherish the moment I was with the School of Environmental Engineering at Univ Malaysia Perlis. The students there were wonderful too. I will never forget the times that I spent at University Malaya as an adjunct professor, a professor at UCSI university and as a subject matter expert on sustainable construction at the Open University of Malaysia, albeit on a short span of time. Oh, yes, I did also teach at Cardiff University, Wales while reading for my PhD. All in all I must have a sizeable number of students at the 5 universities and education department in London. I must also not forget my brothers and sisters and children who were my staff at various organisations that I used to work with - the State Secretariat of Kedah, UDA, Dixon Homes, Akitek Maju, Bina Darulaman, CIDB Malaysia etc. Already a new private university has asked me to be its Vice Chancellor. I decline as I want to prove my worth at ASWARA for at least three years. So the university appoints me as an academic advisor to keep me interested in it. I like the concept of this university as it focuses on design and technology, on sustainable architecture, especially. At 64 going on 65, I at times forget my age as I keep myself very busy every second that I am awaken. It is almost 1 in the morning at the time of my writing. I just finished reading 2 books since yesterday. There are 12 more books to be read. Altogether I bought 30 books in the last 2 months - cost me around 2,000 Ringgit! Books on entrepreneurship, innovation, ethics, architecture , sustainable development, green technology, and of course books on Islam to prepare me for the long journey that my soul will have to endure when I am called upon. When I am not reading or writing (2 books to finish) I strum my semi-solid guitar or paint. My friends asked my how much sleep that I have each day and night? On average I have only 4 hours. A lot more to do.

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