Batu Caves, 4 April 2009 - At 2.30pm I headed towards Batu Caves to register for the KL-Maran Marathon. This is my 4th year taking part in this pilgrimage walk with hundreds of Hindu devotees (although I am not a Hindu). I was introduced to this walk in 2006 by Uncle Shunmugan who is a Hindu priest whom I met at a Veteran Meet in Bukit Jalil.
He will be celebrating his 80th Birthday on April 14 and has been taking part in this pilgrimage walk for the past 32 years! Despite his health conditions due to old age, he definitely put many young people to shame.
Arrived at Batu Caves around 4.00pm and headed to the registration table. In 2007, I had Peter Goh and Saliah joining me in the walk. It was one of the toughest although every year we are walking the same route. While we were performing the ritual walk round the temple on the final day, rain was pouring down. Our luggage left under a make-shift tent was all soaked with muddy water. I managed to savour a long pants and a semi-wet shirt for the night. All were soaked in their wet clothes the entire night without a shelter or proper rest place. That was the toughest test!
This year Amelia, Wai Mun and Pueh Tian decided to join me. After registration, I went round acknowledging and catching up with some of the participants whom I met the previous years. We were ushered to a cafeteria in front of a garden for light refreshment.
The Rela members and some of the participants from outstations having tea
The Police Sergeant (in dark blue & orange t-shirt) together with his officers accompanying throughout the journey to ensure the safety of the participants
Mr. Robin (wearing cap), the head of RELA and his men assisting the Police to ensure smooth traffic throughout the journey
Some of the devotees who arrived early attending the opening ceremony
Samy Shunmugan lighting up to start the prayer and seek for blessing from Lord Muruga
Datin Seri Indrani who is the Chairperson for the event giving a speech
First year was the toughest as I was not prepared at all but I definitely enjoyed the journey. It is an experience of a life time. This journey taught me a lot about life. It made me humble and more appreciative of people and things around me more than ever. This journey is like a self reflection to re-evaluate my life; How I perceived life and just be a human as I should be. To do my level best to fulfill my mission before being called back to the Almighty.