Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Ushering in the Year of the Ox

Revving up to the Year of the Ox is more of a grind with the KLSE index looking more bearish than bullish (Ox-ish?) . . .

. . . and is reflected in the lukewarm festive atmosphere around Chinatown.
Locals pass by celebratory pussy willows, not amused by their significance.
Others push on to earn a days' living, and for the last 12 days of the year.
Despite the money trees and good luck charms of last year, . . .
. . . it would seem that more are waiting for alms this year. According to Lilian Too, "2009 is a year when earth energy stabilizes, bringing recovery and relief from the previous year's difficulties. Strong earth energy suppresses water, so oil price should recede making recovery easier and faster....." (http://www.lillian-too.com/)
Last year, Too said the missing fire element is making the financial market look very unstable this year, suggesting that the uncertainties resulting from the US subprime problem may not be ending yet.

Nevertheless, she said the second half of the year will be better and that investors may accumulate shares when prices fall and take the pickings later in the year. Too also told investors to bet on real estate this year. "Earth is wealth, so buy property. But make sure they are landed property. You must be able to feel the earth and feel the wealth." (A Year To Think Big by Chong Pooi Koon, New Strait Times 15th January 2008)
Make of that what you will.

Meanwhile the only thing that remains bright is the wonderful blue Malaysian skies over Foch Avenue, now named Jalan Cheng Lock, and Central Market.

The stalls in Petaling Street are still manned by Mat Bangla, although significantly fewer in number, after recent criticisms by some politicians that Chinatown has lost its original flavour. Boys from Nepal and Myanmar have now taken over, and blend in more with the local crowd, until they open their mouths, of course.
You make the last dash through hassling vendors tempting you to buy genuine fake YSL or Fendi bags. You nip into Peter Hoe's shop above Popular Book Store for refuge. It remains a treasure trove of eclectic exotica, and the cafe still serves the yummiest cakes in KL. Thank goodness for some consistency and quality that you can depend on.

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