So far it has been an interesting experience! Leaving Shepparton, Victoria yesterday I drove to Tullamarine and parked my car at the new Value Car Park, where the bus driver patiently waited for me to wander over. Clearly there was no one else on the bus and he was happy to wait. He told me all about how the car park was new – only opened a month – and then proceeded to tell me how to find the bus on my return. That was the last of the friendly faces for a while. People lining up to drop off their bags and/or check in seemed so grumpy! Mind you they did think l was queue jumping but as it ultimately turned out , I was not even meant to be lining up yet! So I sat, waited, chatted on the phone and watched. The airport was so busy!
Finally when it was my turn to drop off my luggage I stood in line with this beautiful young Couple and their 2yo son -who sat ever so patiently! we enjoy a lovely Conversation including discovering that their young son loved sharks! (David and Daniel might get a laugh at this!) l then proceeded do tell him all about the extremly dangerous cookie-cutter shark that is renowned for taking down U.S. nuclear submarines!!!
The flight itself was good. I sat next to a man travelling to Mawmbi, India watched a couple of movies, ate great food and slept. Managed to get about four hours sleep. I didn’t realise how similar the Malaysian language is to Indonesian! SO yes, as the announcements Came on, I actually could pick up on some words! I might have to come back and explore here some more! One of the ironies of traveling Malaysia Airlines was that on the entertainment screen it opened with a prayer to Allah asking him to protect the flight so that we arrived safely. As we sat waiting to disembark they started playing Christmas songs (rather than carols). Not only that but at 5dm as we arrived in KL the temperature was 34 degrees and the songs were talking about snow! I couldn’t help but wonder about the likelihood of anglo-christian-secular-westerners playing music that celebrated Ramadan or the Jewish festival of Hanukah! As one of those Westerners it does seem that the music was an obvious choice but it actually reminded me about the privileged position, we as Westerners hold globally. No wonder other cultures, nations and religious that differ to what we consider ‘normal’ are seen as a threat to social stability. It would seem that we are happy to talk about diversity, multiculturalism and equality as long as western ideology pervades and remains the common meeting point. Anyway the man from India and I shared a Common recognition of how misplaced and ironic it was that we left the plane listening to Christmas music singing about the joyous wonders of Aris ‘snowy season’!
Just to add to the ivories and juxtapositions between cultures. I sit here at a cafe called O’Briens- an Irish company – and was served coffee by a barrister who was Malaysian, Muslim and female! Yes ironies everywhere!
The airport at KL is just beautiful!
In about three or so hours I will arrive in Koh Samui! Can’t wait!