Friday, January 21, 2011


last tuesday, jan 18th, i had to fly to kota kinabalu with the director of international department "chot" and his director of international affairs division "ms rue", to help kk's branch office to set up a committee in organizing an international conference in november this year. 
our flight was scheduled at 5.50pm from klia. the driver picked me up from my home around 2pm, then ms rue in taman tun and finally chot at m.o.f putrajaya since he had to participate in a negotiation on "double-taxation agreement". it really was a privilege to travel with big guns like them - at least dapat minum at the golden lounge.
anyway, it was a full flight, there were passengers of connecting flight that joined us from korea, but mostly were locals. it was rather a smooth flight until "ladies and gentlemen, in preparation for landing please put your seat upright......." suddenly it became extremely rough and the plane suffered 2 air pockets plunges due to heavy thunderstorm in kk. one more air pocket, i swore i would have puked! 
one minute we saw the runaway lights and the next minute it was gone and although wobbling, the plane was cruising at high speed to free itself of the thick clouds. the passengers were panic-stricken. i saw ms rue residing all the doa she could think of and chot informed us later he was out of breath residing the ummul kitab (the heart of the quran) al fatihah. being a frequent traveller, myself, i made it a point to reside the traveling doa at the beginning of the journey so i just kept mum and calm.
about twenty minutes afterwards, there was  an announcement for landing again. i was pirotting the steward in a rather loud manner " tuan-tuan dan puan-puan, selamat datang ke lapangan terbang antarabangsa labuan.....which made some of the passengers around us wondering where they actually were.  the plane was nearing an airport but it didn't look like labuan to me. it landed smoothly but to the real horror, the announcement said " we have safely landed in brunei! what? how could that be.
since the plane need half-an-hour to refuel, we were allowed to use the toilet facilities at the lounge outside since the panicked-relieved passengers were making a beeline for the in flight toilets.
i quickly smsed to wanita comel and she replied " wow best nyer, dapat ke brunei free of charge" happy haper! tak dapat tengok kat luar pun since it was raining. quickly ms rue and i were busy asking the ground personnel for the surau because by the time we land in kk it will be midnite and i am sure we will be dead tired. the sms came like rain from people in kk who were waiting for us to arrive but didn't.
true enough, although the thunderstorm had ceased in kk the plane landed with scratching sound due to wet runaway and it took extra long to ferry to the terminal. my guess was the plane overshot by few metres while landing. there were claps and cheers from the foreign passengers sitting behind us, true enough it was about 11.40pm when we were pulling our luggage desperately like zombies to the main exit door .
outside, the driver told us that they had wallop the dinner prepared for us hours ago and asked if we were going somewhere for food. spontaneously all of us shouted "hotel" because the calling of the bed is too great to ignore by now.
my way of distressing? an hour of laying in  soap bubbled  hot water tub and while at it i remembered one passengers said to his friend , "i can proudly tell my friend that i have at least pee in brunei!". 
jakun kan?

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