Wednesday, March 04, 2009

sapa doh paser mah

Alhamdulillah, I arrived safely at home. I wanted to post this earlier, but I was pretty busy relaxing and chillin' in my hometown, the hot and dampy Pasir Mas.

So here it goes...

My Akita-Tokyo Shinkansen (bullet train) was like always, right on time. Even with the heavy snow, they always depart and reach its intended destination right on time. I have much respect to the Japanese public transportation system.

One would suspect a train moving at about 200km/h would be prone to nauseating shakiness, but let me tell you that the Shinkansen is the most comfortable way of transportation that I’ve ever experienced; it’s incredible that even at that speed, I could still piss straight in the toilet. And it’s quite quiet too!

I really enjoyed the ride because the scenery from my seat was absolutely stunning; my view is fixed on the window. I really liked how the heavy snow has turned the previously lush greenery, to majestic whites of trees, river banks and paddy fields.

The only unfortunate thing about it is that each attempt at taking a great picture to visualize it to you here has failed; the reason is obvious: the bullet train moves at such high speed that it is hard to take a picture without it being very blurry; I just gave up after a few tries, then I sat back and just enjoyed the scenery while listening to Halim Yazid on my mp3 player. I guess those beautiful sceneries should only be seen with one’s very own set of eyes.


Upon arriving at Tokyo Station around 10:00 a.m, I rushed to change train and took the Yamanote Line to Hibiya, where I change to another line (I don’t remember the name) and took the rapid train to Narita Airport.

I arrived at Narita Airport around 11:30 a.m. and I immediately changed my winter outfit to summer ones… it’s quite warm inside the airport, and I’m about to go to a much warmer country in a couple of hours!

There was quite a long queue at the MAS check-in counter, so I waste no time and immediately lined up, as my flight is at 01:30 p.m.


30 minutes later, I got to hand out my printed-out ticket reservation to the check-in counter, and as I explained to the MAS/ANA employee about how conveniently they have cancelled my flight and moved me to an afternoon flight that made me miss my domestic flight from Kuala Lumpur to Kota Bharu on that very same day, the lady behind the counter made an extremely sad face, like a kitten who got scolded by its owner for doing something naughty.

She then asked me to follow her to the ticket service counter, and there I was given a new domestic flight ticket and a hotel reservation papers for my stay in KL that night. Then two other MAS/ANA employee joined the counter-lady, and with much synchronization, they bowed and bowed some more, apologizing for all the hassle.

Actually, I was not really mad at the whole situation because I don’t really mind being late for a day; but their excessive apology really made me uncomfortable because they made it look like a MAJOR apology after a MAJOR fuck-up; like mistakenly kicking me in the balls with their hard-leather-made high-heels. I know there are some who might like it done to them, but not me!

Well, the way they apologized might seemed sincere and all, but knowing the well-developed culture of Japanese customer service, I guess that’s all in their manual book. They’re just doing what they are taught by their seniors.


Anyways, the security check went well and I got to my seat as planned.

At first, I was being very defensive with the guy sitting next to me. I just said hello and then went into total silence as I read the book that I brought along.

Then when the afternoon meal was served, I just couldn’t hold the awkwardness anymore and tried to make small chat with him.

* The lunch menu for that day was just terrific; Gyudon with Soumen. Delicious! *

Although I knew my guess would be right that the guy sitting next to me is a Malaysian (Indian-Malaysian), I started my conversation in English, not in the national language Bahasa Melayu.

I don’t know why, maybe I thought that he would understand me better using orang-puteh-speak.

So begin the awkward conversation of two Malaysian nationals in a foreign language, instead of their own national language.

Then suddenly he spoke in Malay, in a distinctive Penang accent. I was so relieved! It was so rude of me to underestimate the language proficiency of my own fellow countrymen.

Anyways, the guy is an engineer for Hitachi, and he is going back to Malaysia after a week long briefing/meeting concerning a new product.

It was inevitable that our conversation would touch the topic that everyone talks about now: the Japanese (and global of course) economic meltdown.

He acknowledged the fact that his own company (Hitachi) is affected but he said that it was predicted that this fucked-up condition will only last until March, as the Japanese economy finishes its current fiscal year, in which every extra baggage are let go, to start a new fiscal new year a lot more stress-free, starting from April.

I hope he is right.

The flight made a brief stop at Kota Kinabalu International Airport. I took this opportunity to perform my Solat, take a huge dump, and relax while I read The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins; just to fill in the waiting time.

I thought when I arrived at Kota Kinabalu, I could take a brief walk outside to breathe the air of Borneo for the first time, but they just won’t let me do it. I can only stay inside the small airport the whole 3 hours.


I asked for the Spanish Chicken set for the in-flight dinner to Kuala Lumpur. My curiosity of how it would taste like helped me make this decision, but really, it was nothing special; it tastes like Ayam Masak Merah with extra tomato, and a lot milder. I finished my meal rather quickly, not leaving behind even a single seed of rice, like I always do.


I arrived at KLIA rather late, at around 11:00 p.m.

Claimed my luggage, then I went straight to the elevator to go to the first floor.

As I reached for the close button, a lady with her luggage trolley came rushing in the elevator, relieved that she made it.

I asked her “which floor?”

Then she mumbled something about her baggage and what floor should she go to claim it. She looks exhausted, and I mysteriously find her bushy tired eyes… attractive. Maybe it’s because I’m flight-tired too.

Anyways, I was not in a hurry (although slightly tired) so I guided the Turkish lady to where she was supposed to be waiting.

As I left her to be on my way, she said “Terima Kasih” and gave me such a beautiful smile, I’m blogging about it.

Nothing beats an honest, friendly smile. That really made helping her worth it.

I wish I knew how to speak a little Turkish.

The Concorde Inn room given to me was not that bad. It was quite spacey, clean and most importantly, FREE of charge.

I have an annoying trait (can this be called trait?) of not being able to go to sleep quickly if I’m in a place that I’m not used to, unless I was very tired. So I did push ups and sit ups till I have not one ounce of energy left, then I went to sleep.

I woke up at around 6:30 a.m. by the hotel staff’s morning call, washed my face, went outside for a little jog around the soccer field near my room, took a bath, brushed my teeth, long pisses and shit and all, then I went to take my breakfast at the hotel’s café.

I was pretty hungry so I ate a bunch of sliced beef, 2 plates of nasi lemak, some roti chanai, roti bakar, bihun goreng and 3 glasses of milk to wash all that down. Everything was tasty and nice. Me likey!

My level of excitement jumped a couple of notches up as the plane gets closer and closer to the Sultan Ismail Petra Airport.

The landing was a little bit bumpy but I won’t waste any time worrying about it, so I smiled and waved goodbyes to the friendly air stewardesses as I rushed to baggage claim.

At the arrivals gate, I could see a bunch of people take turn welcoming and shaking hands with one of the passengers on the same flight as mine.

So apparently someone famous was on that plane.


Carrying two heavy bags, I walked steadily towards 3 smiling faces that are very dear and close to my heart.

“Ummi, sapo tadi hok oghe ghama-ghama ‘sale tuh?”

“Ooo tu la Khairy Jamaluddin”


“Cekak tok kena. Tu la ‘natu Pok Loh”

“Aaa kena, kena. Tapi bakpo maghi Klate nyo, sini ke banyok doh tuke kaghut?”


  1. “Aaa kena, kena. Tapi bakpo maghi Klate nyo, sini ke banyok doh tuke kaghut?” <-- hahaha

    Omg... you call your mom Ummi TOO? That's cool! And weird at the same time hahaha.

    Have fun in Malaysia!

  2. so u call your mom UMMI too? hohoho i thought you're MOMMY-calling type lol


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