Family and Kiwanis

Our second day in Johor Bahru (JB), begins with a serious downpour as seen in the photo to the left.  It wasn’t like someone turned on the tap, rather that they had opened the sluice way.  The amazing part was that less than twenty minutes after it stopped there was no water visible anywhere.  The drainage system that I have spoken of is extremely efficient.  As you can see from the photo of grandson Vince, the ground is hardly even wet.

Then we were packing luggage in the van and off to what could be called brunch.  Kim and I were not leaving after just one day, however we did have an engagement for later in the day and would be shifting to a hotel for the night.  Kent took us to a great place to eat and we had a most enjoyable family meal.  Around the table is Kim, Vaness, Valen, Kent, me, Vince, Jaclyn and Vanessa.  At this point I don’t think I had really gotten used to the reality of being with our grandchildren.  I certainly like these type of meals, eating is relaxed and conversation is ongoing.  Definitely a good way to get to know family that I have just met.

After some good visiting (and eating), the family dropped Kim and I off at the KSL Resort Hotel in downtown Johor Bahru.  We were staying the night here so that we could attend the Governor’s Gala of the Malaysia Kiwanis District Convention.  Turned out that we were not just “attending”, but we were to be VIP Guests at the dinner. 

Now the hotel is part of a huge shopping complex as well.  Kent dropped us off at one of the shopping centre entrances and we embarked on what could very well have been an episode of Amazing Race.  Finding our way through the maze of shops, passageways and floors to the hotel lobby was most assuredly an adventure.  Signage was notable by its absence and directional knowledge of those working in the shopping complex seemed to be in a similar state.  Eventually after a number of ups and downs, along with a few “you can’t get there from here”, we reached the hotel desk and checked in.  Our room was quite nice with a good view of JB from about a dozen floors up.  Kim came over to the window to admire the view and almost immediately recoiled back into the room.  You see, she is not a great fan of heights and two things kind of threw her off.  The first was that the windows were floor to ceiling and the second was the notice on the window indicating “Warning – Do Not Lean On Glass”.  Once past that, we relaxed for a while and then got ready for the dinner.

As previously mentioned, it turned out that Kim and I were VIP Guests at the Governor’s Gala.  Although I was attending as Kiwanis Western Canada District Governor this was not expected, however it was a terrific experience.  On the right is the VIP table for the dinner.  Each of us had individual service during the dinner while the remainder of the room had table service.  It took a little getting used to, but we managed.

We had many friends in the room whom we had met over the last few years, either in person or via Facebook, making for a most pleasant evening.  Along with us at the VIP table was fellow Governor Cheng Lian Teh, Past Governor Doris Choo, Past International Trustee Chia-Sing Hwang, International Trustee and District Counselor Warren Mitchell, and Incoming Governor Simpson Tan to name a few.  On the left is a photo with Doris, Lian Teh and Warren, while on the right I was asked to join in a photo with a number of distinguished Malaysia Kiwanians.  All in all it was a wonderful evening recognizing outstanding Kiwanians, learning about Kiwanis Downs Syndrome Foundation, Kiwanis Careheart Centre and other District activities, as well as visiting with friends and meeting new folks.  Terrific job was done by the organizers.

Kim and I would like to express our thanks to Governor Lian Teh and all the Malasysia District Kiwanians for the invitation to the Governor’s Gala and for the awesome reception that we received.

Tomorrow we are looking forward to be back with the grandkids.

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