Back in Malaysia since yesterday! Currently trying to heal from bronchitis, and meanwhile, here's an update! Rewind please!
17th June 2007
Paranoid about missing the bus, my very harried mom made us all go early. Tossed me, my dad, my luggage and dumplings (for my grandma) straight into the car... only to get out moments later because her car ain't working wtf. We reached Corus Hotel very early though, and ended up sitting on the stairs, slightly shivering from the morning chill. I've only packed my bag the night before and man, if you ever need an expert to stuff the kitchen sink in your luggage, I'll be THE one to do it! Such skills that I have acquired; I would actually feel prouder if it weren't for the fact that it's one heck of a useless skill =___=;;;.
Anyhoo, the double-decker bus finally rolled in, 15 minutes shy from the departure time. Weeks before, I was insisting on sitting on the Konsortium (because I'm a cheapskate and Konsortium ain't that bad!!), which would probably save us back about 80 bucks, but my mom wanted me to try the apparently "high-class bus". I got a kick from how they tried to make everything sound so high-end; on the side of the bus, there was " AEROLINE The Convenient Way To Fly".
Um. Fly? The only way that a bus would fly is when it hits a barrier and somersaults through the air. THEN you will say, "Oooh, flying bus!" before it comes crashing to the ground and bursting in flames. Then a smartass would go, "Oooh, dying people!" =_____________________=;;;; * tosses smartass into fire and burning metal*
And oh oh, the announcement! I found it so funny that I actually copied it down:
"... There is a toilet in the lower deck for light usage only. I repeat, LIGHT USAGE only. If you're going for heavy usage, kindly inform me, we could stop at any restrooms down the highway."
One , upper and lower deck. Ahoy there sailors! Two, "We'll be stopping by the restrooms as a passenger would like to do a Number 2." Okay, they didn't actually say that. I just love how they keep emphasizing the light usage part. It's even printed in A4 and stuck on the wall in the toilet.
On the bright side with rainbows and woodland creatures, Aeroline has the extra leg space, television and servings of food. Well, water bottle (Evian!) and fruit cake.
This is probably the first time that I'm travelling on my own, not to mention that in two days I'll be flying to Vietnam, and understandably my parents, especially my mom, were quite worried. No matter how old I am, they will always see me as the baby of the family... it's a quarter annoying and 3-quarters heartwarming. To be honest, I still can't believe that they let me go. The first part of my life was a very sheltered one... I was book-smart but nothing else and I hated it. My mom's overprotectiveness used to drive me up the wall and I can still remember the fierce arguments that ensued whenever I voiced out my desire to take public transport; I fought with her for four years before she allowed me to take public transport. We're like night and day, and yet at the same time, we have the same ground; our basic principles. After that, it was gradual process of letting go. It must had worked because I was on my way to Vietnam on my own ;P. Back to the alone part, I've always travelled with PY and suddenly there's no one to chat with or camwhore with on the bus.
What did I do then? There will, of course, be the sleeping, and most possibly snoring. Then a call jolted me awake, which was my mom worrying that SG immigration will confiscate the dumplings (FYI, the dumplings made it!). On the bus, there was this family with two boys. The boys were squabbling, as boys usually do. Then when they are tired, the younger one would climb to his brother's side and they would sleep hugging each other, which is so sweet!!! Then they would wake up and resume squabbling.
And I did a lot of thinking. I was trying to remember the girl who used to enclose herself in her own world because she was so afraid. She fumbles in the real world and she couldn't bear the pain of being so useless, so she escaped. She soared and reached great heights in her dreams. It felt so safe and happy and comforting. She replays it, over and over, hoping that if she wish it hard enough, it would magically come true. But her eyelids were only screens to a fictional movie played by idle brain. She can't keep her eyes closed forever, and when she did open her eyes, she was stagnant while everyone else is in front. Dust laid in her hair and skin, undisturbed. Dust from her lashes fall like snow when she opened her eyes. It seeps into her vocal chords, and her throat rusts from the lack of use. That time I kept thinking that I'm brave but in truth, I was cowering in fear. And it felt so bad whenever I open my eyes. I was so happy in dreams, but when it came to the real world, I couldn't help crying. For years, I'm still healing from a past hurt, a betrayal so great, that it made me into the person I was then; meekness, nice little doormat, master escapist, and the dweller in people's shadows.
The girl still appears once in a while, whenever I screw up and she would peek from the door and say, Come with me, let's run away!! and her outstretched hand looks so inviting. The world were I would be perfect and I could do no wrong. My own created reality; an altered one, made to fit. But I've learnt over the years that it's us who has to do the fitting in without compromising the person that you are. The world is not, and will not, revolve around a single entity. Nor will there be a fairy popping up and offering to turn back time for you. Running won't solve the problem. Living in the real world isn't as hunky dory than the fictional one. So why the real world? You won't be as happy. People here disappoint you, hurt you and leave you. But then daydreamers are forgetting the joy of growing as a person. I'm still very a child because I deprived myself so much in the past. Sure, things rarely go my way and there's more heartaches and sadness in comparison to the amount of happiness that I experienced. And the happiness that it gives me cannot be compared to the ones I get from dreams. It goes deeper to the roots of your being. It reaches into corners that you never thought existed. It's so much more fulfilling, like rich rich chocolate where one drop is enough as compared to the sugary mix weak chocolate that you could eat forever and don't feel full.
I live for that ounce of happiness. As long as it still exist, I will remain right here in the real world.
I don't want to feel afraid to go further, be more than I am. Time has been wasted for many years and though it would be easy to lament of the loss, I refuse to. I want to grow. I'm not as brilliant as some people, but I will not grudge. I will follow my own pace.
The late bloomer is on her way.
As my thoughts came to an end, I've reach Singapore. Eager to meet my aunt, grandma, uncle and niece. I never used to feel that way. It's funny that the older I grow, the more appreciative I am to have this big big family.