The Grass Cutters

It’s All About Teamwork

The residential area I live in is blessed with a good spread of green lawns and trees, part of the vision of the then CEO of the developer who modeled the residential development project along a countryside living concept. It was one of the main factors which attracted us to the place although it was a little out of the way from the amenities back then; and twelve years on, the ‘green’ has matured but also shrunk appreciably due to further developments, but there is still much of it left …

The Unsung Heroes – A Picture Of Concentration

The copious amount of rainfall and sunshine throughout the year in the tropics promotes its luxuriant growth, which means frequent trimming is required to keep the lawns neat and tidy. Weekends is when I notice the grass cutters presence most in the neighbourhood, either from the distant sound of their loud whirring mowers or seeing them at work. It’s a tough and humdrum job in my opinion, trimming square foot upon square foot of green lawn over and over again, and returning two weeks later to the same spot to do it all over again.

Working The Slopes

With a brush cutter mounted to the back and protective wear (i.e. face mask, shades and apron) on to shield themselves from the baking hot sun and flying grass clippings/twigs/stones, it can get uncomfortably hot and sweaty. A thankless job, but someone got to do it, and in Kuala Lumpur, this work is mostly done by foreign workers from either Bangladesh or Indonesia, earning about USD300-400 per month. They are employed by contractors who are awarded contracts by the local authorities to care for specific areas. Each area is tended to once a fortnight, usually by a team of 5-7 workers and a work supervisor.

Eye On The Grass

Among The Trees

Time To Regroup For A Break

Took these photos last Saturday morning after sending my daughter to her tuition class. Rushed back home to grab my camera when I saw this team working at a ‘nice’ location and the morning sunlight was good. Something I have been wanting to photograph and post for a while now to recognise these unsung heroes contribution to our society. Hats off to the grass cutters!

No full face shots at the grass cutters request.

All photos: Fujifilm X-E2 with XF 55-200mm

Prince Of Egypt – A Musical

The Wesley Methodist School KL (Int.) recently held a ‘Prince Of Egypt’ musical for three consecutive nights in late April. It was one of many events which the school is organizing to raise funds for the renewal of lease for the school land which will be expiring in a few years time. As it is for a good cause, we were only happy to support and bought tickets for the first night’s show.

‘Things Cannot Be As They Were’

It was literally a cast of hundreds with students from respective year’s and teachers forming the production team, contributing in one way or another their talent, expertise and time to make it a great showcase for the school. There were a few glitches here and there on the premiere night’s performance, but they were minor; and most importantly, everyone enjoyed the show.

‘Let My People Go’

‘I Will Not Be The Weak Link’

The epic journey of Moses from slave to prince to deliverer which has been told and retold for centuries was beautifully and colourfully brought to life within a three hour production with the right balance of play, song and dance. It was highly entertaining, an admirable effort and performance from the entire team, they certainly did the school and themselves proud that night.

‘When You Believe’ Duet

Soloists And Choir

‘When You Believe’ Duet

The Choir

Soloist And Choir

Song Of Freedom Dance

When You Believe Dance

When You Believe Dance 2

Audio And Visual Effects Artistry

The audio and visual effects team kept a close watch of the entire proceedings, timed their effects to perfection to create the right mood and atmosphere throughout the performance, one which particularly stands out for me is the ‘Parting the Red Sea’ scenes in the final act which I think was very clever and well executed.

Parting The Red Sea

The Pursuit

The Water Returns

The Finale

The curtain calls from the entire cast were absolutely spontaneous and charming, simply a delight to watch …

Curtain Call – Main Cast

Curtain Call – Main Cast

Curtain Call – Aaron And Hotep

Curtain Call – Jethro And The Three Sisters

Curtain Call – The Voice Of God And Narrator

Curtain Call – Supporting Cast

Curtain Call – Palace Maids

Curtain Call – Dancers

Curtain Call – Dancers

Curtain Call – Dancers

Curtain Call – Dancers

And the show came to an end at approximately 11 pm with the principal’s closing address …

Principal’s Closing Address

Seated quite close to the stage and in the middle of a row, I would have distracted the audience attention and enjoyment of the show with my photography. During the intermission, I found an unobtrusive spot further back the hall, and shot some highlights of the musical from thereon with a zoom lens. Not ideal, but I think it worked quite well for some of the scenes and moments, which I have posted here.

All photos: Fujifilm X-E2 with XF 55-200mm

A Room With A View – 2

A Room With A View In Downtown Ho Chin Minh City

I was already a happy chappy when the front desk informed they are upgrading me to a higher end room, I was even happier when I stepped into the room and noticed the beautiful view of downtown Ho Chin Minh City framed by the large window area with a vermilion lounge chair set next to it and a lovely looking floor lamp by the side. Another great setting for a ‘room with a view’ shot to add to the series, I thought. Well, yes, but it took a few days (I had the luxury of biding my time as I was on a long stay at the hotel) and a couple of attempts to get the right balance of lighting between the external surroundings and within the room for a proper balanced exposure, while at the same time finding sufficient drama in the sky for an interesting and moody shot, before I was happy with the outcome. Hope it works for you 🙂

Ho Chin Minh City is certainly developing fast with already a number of landmark high rise buildings dotting the downtown skyline, more are expected to join the club soon by the looks of the numerous high rise construction projects happening all round.

Photo: Fujifilm X-E2 with XF 23mm