May 21, 2016
At Double 7–My Thoughts
In two days I turn 77 on May 23. Yes, it has been a long and difficult journey for me with more than my share of ups and downs. I did life my way. Of course, there are stories I could tell you, but I would spare you all the agony of my rantings which are often about the good old times, and there seems to be nothing great about the present. Most people have no time for grandfather stories, so I shall spare them the jarring pain of putting up with mine.
Dr. Kamsiah and Din Merican (77)
Yesterday, one of my students at The University of Cambodia asked me. “How does it feel to be Double 7?”. My answer to him is also a one liner. “I don’t feel a thing.” Like Poet Robert Frost, I say I have miles and miles to keep before I sleep.
Senator John Glenn once remarked: “Too many people, when they get old, think that they have to live by the calendar.” I don’t. So my life goes on and I lead a life of many possibilities, with occasional missed opportunities, although I may feel nasty towards former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad for his legacy of kleptocratic governance, and Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Najib Razak and his bunch of corrupt, incompetent, and irresponsible cabinet ministers for making life difficult to us.
Senator John Glenn of Ohio–My Hero and Role Model
You may remember that John Glenn, this well known astronaut from Ohio turned politician, became the oldest person at 77 to board a U.S. Space Shuttle. He is my role model for exemplifying the ethos that we shouldn’t let age define and cripple us. The calendar is a useful way to let you know the date, but if you let yourself to be hemmed in by your chronological age, you may lock yourself out of potentially valuable opportunities. You can bet I do not intend to remain static and come my remaining days.–Din Merican