Without any maids, our mothers cooked, cleaned and took care of the whole family. They still had time to chat with neighbors.
Everyone had candy floss, fizzy drinks and shaved ice with syrups. Diabetes were rare and aspirin/panadol cured all illness.
We rode adult's bicycle to school, the richer ones had their own mini-bikes. Ironically, we all had problems with our brakes, and after running into the bushes a few times, we learned how to solve the problem.
Prefects were a fearful lot - more fearful than the teachers. Detention class was like going to prison for a day. We had "public canning" in schools.
NO ONE ever won the big prices on "Tikam". It was a scam but it did not stop us coming back for more.
(Original photo from Florence Enau - reproduced by Sarawakiana@2
Photo of Florence and a young Malay Boy in 1967 in Kuching)
Motorbikes were rode without helmets. It was rare to ride a private taxi. Taking a bus was luxury - we either cycled or walked everywhere.
We drank water from the tap and NOT from bottles.
We spend hours in fields under the sun, playing football or flying kites, without worrying about UV ray. It did not affect us anyway.
We roamed free catching spiders and did not worry of Aedes mosquitoes. We kept our spiders in match boxes and ready for a fight anytime.
With mere 5 pebbles, girls played endless games and with a tennis ball, boys ran like crazy for hours.
When it rained, we swam the drains and canals to catch "ikan keli", none of us were dissolved in rain.
We shared one bottle of soft drink with friends, NO ONE actually worried about catching anything.
We ate salty, sweet & oily foods, bread had real butter and sometimes condense milk. We enjoyed very sweet coffee, tea, and "ice kacang" but we were not obese because WE WERE OUT PLAYING ALL THE TIME!!
We left home in the morning and played all day till hunger drove us back home. When needed, our parents knew how to find us. NO ONE actually watched over us and WE ALWAYS WERE SAFE.
WE DID NOT HAVE HANDPHONES BUGGING US. We rode bikes or walked over to a friend's house and just yelled for them!
We did not have Playstations, X-boxes, Nintendo's, multiple channels on cable TV, DVD movies, no surround sound, no phones, no personal computers, no Internet. WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them! Our TV was black and white.
We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and we still continued the stunts.
We did not have birthday parties till we were 21, i.e. when we started to take noticed of girls.
We have not heard of the word "Bumiputra". We only knew our friends by names. Their parents were Pak Cik and Mak Cik or Uncle and Aunty.
In badminton, we did not change the shuttle as long as it was in flight. Regardless of how many feathers were left in the shuttle, our game continued but still Wong Peng Soon and Punch Gunalan made us proud in Badminton.
Match-boxes were always "chilly" or "king kong" brand - to own a box of matches from a hotel was something great.
Regardless of whether we could afford one, we always knew Maths tuition was Ringgit Malaysia TEN (10) a month.
All parties were held in the Town hall.
We felt please to see a policeman and we were always edger to tell police everything we saw.
Morris Minor and Volkswagen beetle were on our roads - driven alongside Kingswood, Vauxhall, Opel and Chyrsler. Executives of companies drove Peugeot 504. Japanese cars were considered "inferior". There were no traffic lights only roundabouts.
The whole Kampung came together during kenduri and all took turns to "kacau dodol". Chinese, Indians and Malays were all part of kenduri and all of us spoke Malay.