Thursday, 23 December 2004

A sense of (mis)direction

Recently my mother and sisters came from Kelantan and stayed at my place for 1 whole week. Very much aware that the main reason for their visit was to explore KL instead of playing nanny to my Dearest Daughter (DD), I encouraged them to go out. Since my house is not anywhere near a bus or lrt station, the only way was to drive my Kelisa.

That Monday night, I gave them a map to Tesco Puchong. From my house in Section 27 Shah Alam, I figured that it’s safest to go to Tesco Puchong since the route consists of mostly straight roads with only a few turns. My sisters are accomplished drivers back in Kelantan, but the roads (and drivers) in KL kind of intimidate them. After reviewing my map and upon a lot of convincing by my Dearest Husband (DH), they decided to take the plunge. So, at 8.00 pm, off they went in my Kelisa – my 2 sisters, 3 nieces and a nephew.

I sms’ed them at 8.20 to ask whether they had arrived at Tesco and if they had any problem to get there. Came a reply from Kak Nun, something like, “Not yet. Not quite ok. But we’ll try.” I thought that was strange as Tesco was so near. At around 8.40 came another sms to say that they were had arrived at Tesco. Fuhh! By around 11.00 pm they arrived safely at home. Not too bad, or so I thought.

The revelation came a few days later. On the way to Tesco, they took the wrong exit towards Putrajaya / Kajang. After sometime, they realised that they were lost and made a u–turn. From there, they managed to find their way to Tesco.

On the way back from Tesco, they were supposed to make a u-turn before the traffic light. Due to the faulty map (drawn by yours truly), they made it all the way to the traffic light and was not in the right lane to make a u-turn. Instead they made a right turn and as a result, had a tour of Bandar Kinrara, Technology Park, Bukit Jalil area and beyond. Another u-turn and they made their way back home.

A trip that was supposed to boost their confidence ended up being the opposite. It didn’t help that my Mother (who was against the idea in the first place and didn’t go with them), gave them a mini lecture of the dangers of driving in KL. Suffice to say, future trips to Subang Parade and Shah Alam City were aborted. They ended up staying at home the whole week watching TV, which they could well do in Kelantan. I’m not sure whether they watched 8TV and Channel 9 though. Those stations are not available yet in Kelantan.

I blame myself for the fiasco. What appears as a straight road in my mind consists of a few twists and turns and exits. For me who’s already familiar with the route, I only remember the straight road since that’s the right way to go, but for the uninitiated, it’s a totally different sight.

All is not lost, however. My Adik (younger brother) picked them up on Friday. From his house in Gurney Heights, everywhere is within an arm’s reach. There are buses, lrts and taxis to choose from. My sisters made full use of their stay there to go shopping. My nieces had fun in the swimming pool at the condo complex day and night. My Mother, who is too old to use public transport, was transported everywhere by Adik and his wife, Lin. Adik was (still is) on vacation (the term his employer uses for going on leave even if you don’t actually go anywhere out of town) so he was the perfect host for the guests. My little family is back to our normal lives in the tranquillity of Section 27, Shah Alam.

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