I call him Chief. His official title is quite a mouthful: The Most Venerable Datuk K. Sri Dhammaratana, Chief High Priest of Malaysia.
Always feel happy to see the man, albeit only once a year now. Before his ordination to highest office, I used to follow him on his many charity missions.
He is also the founder and driver of the Ti-Ratana Welfare Society that operates homes for children (orphanages), the elderly, the infirmed and also halfway houses for abused women.
Outside the community centres, the society provides Mobile Medical Clinics and Meals-On-Wheels for the underprivileged.
Incredibly, in spite his busy schedule and solemness required in official duties, he still retains his zany sense of humour and power of recalling little details.
Whenever he sees me, he’ll bring up a funny, forgotten, random episode from the past for us to reminisce about. We’ll both end up giggling or laughing to the bemusement and puzzlement of the people kneeling in line to get his blessings.
In the brief chat yesterday, we spoke about the time we were at a multi-faith prayer session for Dr M’s second heart operation. Then we ended up talking about his surprise visit to a Orang Asli home in the middle of a jungle.
The cramped office space at the Buddhist Maha Vihara temple required the use of the Samyang 14 mm FE ultrawide angle lens. Samyang just launched their Instagram at @samyanglensglobal. One of my previous pics is featured in their showcase there.
Sony Alpha a7R, ISO 2500, T4, 1/160 sec.