08 January 2010

Do Not Be Afraid of Travelling

When I asked a teacher friend a few months ago if he was interested in joining me to Thailand, he rolled his eyes up and asked, “Thailand???!!!, you want to get shot there kah?? No no. I don’t want to die in a foreign country”.

Weeks later, i returned home from Thailand still in one peace. Later when I met up with him again, he said “You were lucky”. Of course, he never travelled any further than KL (even though I knew he could afford it). People with those fears like him would never travel. What a shame.

A few months back, I was taking this picture when I got texted by my mom.

Apparently she got so worried by the ongoing H1N1 epidemic and all the news of increasing number of deaths from it. She asked me to come home right away. And that was only my third day in England!

I texted back something like this to her: What have you learnt from your years of servicing the church? Just pray and I’ll be alright. Have faith in Him.

And later on the same day, I was taking this picture when a sister of mine texted to me, quipping about the same thing. H1N1.

I texted back to her: H1N1 is all over the world now, including Malaysia, even Sabah. You too should be careful. You are as much likely to contract H1N1 as I am here.

And a few days later, I was savouring the beauty of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris when I got another SMS from another sister of mine, asking me to come home right away.

This time, I couldn’t take it any longer. I felt robbed of my supposedly happy and undisturbed travelling moments.

I texted her something like this: What’s wrong with you people?? You expect me to just pack up and go back to Malaysia just like that? After years of planning and saving up for this trip? I waited for 20 years for this damn trip to materialize and you want me to cut it short just because of that stupid H1N1 and that damn stupid paranoiac worries of yours? You all can go to hell. Now, let me enjoy my trip and leave me alone!

Of course, I didn’t say the last few sentences (even though I really wanted to. Don't blame me. I was so upset. Grrrrrr).

Well, just to make my point here, travelling is not anything like committing suicide or something. Every now and then we get news of people drowning in their own swimming pools, get killed at the backyard of their house, involved in a road accident just a few yards away from their home or workplace. I mean, accidents and mishaps can happen to anybody regardless of where they are and what they are doing at that time.

And if you think that other countries are less safe to be than in Malaysia, think again. It is a hundred ten times more likely that you get mobbed in Petaling Street of KL..

than in Oxford Street of London..

I got robbed at least 3 times in a supposedly safe residential area in Petaling Jaya when I was studying somewhere around there not so many years ago.

If you’re worried of the people, people in England are a hundred ten times more nice and polite than most people here in Malaysia.

While English people would say SORRY even if it is us who bump against their shoulder, people in Malaysia would usually shout out their anger by saying ‘ADUHHH! Mana you letak mata you???DI lutut kah???’. [Meaning, where the hell did you put your eyes?? In your knees??] I say it because I’ve seen it (not done it :-P). So, we might be more likely to get harmed here in Malaysia than in other countries. 

Unless we are talking about contracting AIDS or any other STDs, then we all know how to avoid or prevent them.

But mishaps and unfortunate occurences? No. They are beyond our control. It is all in the hands of Allah. We can only take the neccessary preventive measures to minimize the risk.

So, put away all the negativities off your head, and those unnecessary worries. Do not be afraid of travelling because you don’t know what you are missing.


chegu carol said...

ya, i normally get the same reaction as well when i went traveling before. when i went to bangkok, there was riot on sumthing going on that time and my colleague asked, 'tidak takut kah mau pi sana?'.... a year later when i went to manila, again they asked me the same question but this time regarding the unexpected climate changes. and this was exactly what i learned from my mom and i told to my colleague, "death is certain. if i fear i might die there, i may never get out of my coconut shell ever."..i wanted to continue, "...just like you" but i didnt. :)

aneejamal said...

..wakaka..semua pun d tgn Allah..doa byk2 pd Allah utk keselamatan dunia dan kahirat kita..tp 'mgkn' sebutan Allah kamu tidak pekat mcm sebutan dlm bahasa Arab..cua try pronounce dpn chegu Lena..sa blanja ko Little Italy kalu ko bule pronounce dgn nahu Arab..kihkih..no offence ah..sa mau tgk brapa ramai yg bule sebut Allah dgn nahu yg betul..even we the muslim pun(termasuk imam d Masjid Negeri),byk failed..

JIPP said...

Carol: You've got it just right. Sometimes people fear over things quite too much for the wrong reason.
Anee: Hehe. Memang susah tu sebutan Arab. But for Little Italy,sanggup saya practice ngan Cigu Lena. Promise ah. :-)

**~Pu-3~** said...

Wah i get what you mean.

H1N1 was at peak last summer holiday, and i have been waiting for my trip to hongkong and japan that time. Its so annoying how people try to make me cancel the trip after saving up and planned for the trip for 2 years! Fortunately my family let me go at the end :)

JIPP said...

yupp yupp. exactly the thing I went through. Almost spoiled my travel days. You did the right thing by going on with the trip.:-)


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