Missing my Bangsar

I woke up this morning to news reports (and WhatsApp messages) about the extension of the Movement Control Order in Malaysia for an additional two weeks. It was originally meant to end on March 31. Thinking about it reminded me of this video that my friend Jason – you might remember him as the prolific food blogger of the past JasonMumbles – had sent to me over the weekend that he took while out getting some essentials.

Video credit: Jason Lioh

This video really got to me – I’ve been an emotional wreck the past few weeks anyway – because it was so strange to see the Bangsar I knew and loved look this way so early in the evening. It’s not completely unfamiliar; that’s how it looks like in the middle of the night when I used to head home after being out late with friends. But those days are far behind me.

But I think why it was so shocking is that this is a far cry from the vibrant and buzzing Bangsar that I grew up in. On top of that, it also brought home the reality of what is going on in Malaysia (and the rest of the world now) considering that it is where my mother still lives. Ee che – what I call my second sister – who until a few days ago was stuck with her family abroad due to flight cancellations and shut downs, live nearby too.

That little bubble called Bangsar is where I’ve always felt most familiar, comfortable and safe.

So, I thought I’d dig out some of my former articles in my The Bangsar Boy column about the neighbourhood for those of you who want to reminiscence along with me about how things were before, or those of you who might be wondering what the hell is this Bangsar thing!

Or if you prefer something more visual, here is a video of the Bangsar I remember (except that it usually has less of me in it, especially over the last few years!). This was a trailer my friend Yuen directed to promote my book in 2017.