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samedi 19 juillet 2014


I am at the International Airport in Kuala Lumpur, just one day after the news arrived that MH 17 enroute from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur with nearly 300 passengers and crew had been shot down by Russia backed rebels in the Eastern Ukraine!
What a tragedy!
So many households affected and more importantly so many lives altered forever, with unfulfilled dreams and inconceivable difficulties. Life is the most sacred of all and its puffing out, especially under strenuous circumstances, is never acceptable.
The mood at the airport was sombre, and people checking in to various destinations, in silence and there was no laughter and the lines moved quickly enough

Malaysian Airlines holds a special place in my heart. On a visit to my parents that I could remember, I flew them from Brunei to Singapore with a stop in Kuching on my way to Perth in Australia. I even remember the aircraft, A Fokker 100 or was it called the Fokker Friendship aircraft?
Soon after qualifying as a doctor in London, I needed to get back to Melbourne to begin my first job as a Houseman, I remember, it was Malaysian Airlines that took me home: London to Kuwait to Kuala Lumpur to Melbourne
Before South East Asia became a popular destination, one could easily get Business Class seats on MH.
I remember flying them from Los Angeles to Kuala Lumpur via Tokyo and then on to Madras in India!
I liked the fact that one could get Nasi Lemak for breakfast and then Teh Tahrek made to order.
The most memorable flight on MH was certainly the one from LHR to KUL to MEL and back with a short stop over in KUL. I remember sleeping all the way back to London!
In the last couple of years, I have tried to fly them internally within Asia, as well as a DXB to KUL flight and a KUL-CDG flight. In recent months, I flew MH on KUL-RGN, KUL-SIN, KUL-REP as well as KUL-CGK in addition to flying them domestically to TGG.
I would miss MH but it may be reborn as some form of a long distance Budget Airline? Under the leadership of that aviation dynamo, Tony Fernandes?
In the local news paper, the Union Boss had insisted that whatever happens to MH, the new management must not include the top three guys, all with lots of honorific titles like Dato, Tan Sri etc. As the union boss said, they were given a chance but they have shown they cannot manage this airline.
The same rag, owned by the government, had a small story: yesterday all Cathay Pacific Flights from Hong Kong to Kuala Lumpur were full but the MH flights were carrying light loads of groups travelling on discounted fares!

I will miss MH and also their lovely lounges at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport! (photos below)