I have to admit that I was being so melancholic when I read last Sunday’s news paper back home. Last weekend personally was a blast for me, to finally come home after spending a whole week working in Kuala Lumpur. But my mind was stuck on one thing, Bangkok.
As you all know, that riot torn the business district apart in Bangkok last weekend. People died, bloodshed, and all security issues were there. I know some places in that area well. I love them, therefore the idea kept around in my mind.
After dozens of emails exchange between AllStars in in Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, and Bangkok itself, here I am. writing what has been in my mind directly from the center of Bangkok, a place where I really want to be right now.
I told my family just last Monday evening, that I’d be travelling to Bangkok for work purposes on Wednesday. Of course they were surprised. My mother said, “Hey son! Are you crazy? If the one who go there isn’t my son, and then I won’t be having this worried feeling.” I replied gently, “Don’t worry, I’ll be ok.”
I was true. Here I am, once again, safe and sound.
Just few minutes ago –while writing this article— I tweeted something also to a friend who was asking about security here, “We’re Indonesians. We live with surprises.” I should be ok with this feeling. Haha.
I strongly believe that Bangkok is really ok. As one of the most important hubs in South East Asia, of course they suffered a lot. To face this kind of reality, I’d to anything to help one of my most favorite cities that I’ve ever been to heal.
I stepped out the FD3572 from Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok with big hope. Suvarnabhumi was quieter that before. To be honest, it’s not many touristic things happening this afternoon at the airport. People are scared and had ultimate tendency to cancel their trip at any cost. It’s understandable, “Who wants to be involved in a post war daily life somewhere in South East Asia?”
Then I met one brave (and lucky) Indian family. I had a nice chat in the queuing line with Mr. Ashish Sakhalkar who travelled with his family. He came from Mumbai and his wife, Mrs. Ashwini Sakhalkar apparently won a special gift from Tony Fernandes while they were on board because it was her birthday today.
“I just booked the ticket three weeks ago. I don’t scare at all. If things don’t go well in Bangkok, I can still go to Pattaya,” he said. He’s planning a four days trip in Thailand and no worry at all on his face.
The feeling was great. Then on my way out, I saw those modern fences that always make feel good every time I walk to the exit at Suvarnabhumi Airport. I saw construction workers having lunch on their own space. But on top of all, I saw smiles.
Need I worry if people who live here on daily basis bravely put their smile to say hello to a guest? Of course not!
Instantly, I said to myself, “The heck with the curfew. I’m coming back to the city I love. So let’s see the sun come up and night cover it up at the end of the day.”
My colleague in Jakarta booked me a room in Sukhumvit area, just as I requested. So I rode with this Thai taxi driver who kept asking about how Jakarta was. He told me, of course in very broken English, “Life’s normal here. Look, traffic jam is there already. It’s rush hour time.”
Yeah, life is normal when the traffic exists. Bangkok’s traffic jam can be hellish. More or less identically to what I experience on a daily basis in Jakarta
I saw traffic jam! Bangkok is (near) completely normal. Well you just need to see the picture and have a thought on your own.
I am just glad to be back here. Stay tuned for more stories. By the end of the week, you who always read my journal in this blog will think the same; life here is normal, in Bangkok.
Then say bye-bye to your fear. Open your heart and come back to Bangkok again. It’s same-same but no different here.
More stories and surprises (from my company –not me *wink) ahead, so please stay tune at http://www.airasia.com.
Somewhere in Bangkok
26/05/2010 – 20.08