Friday, November 26, 2004

Strike and strike out

Today I found out two things in life.

One, Kota Kinabalu does not allow much in terms of choices for people who are big and tall. Today boarding the bus to town turned out to be an ordeal. University term has started and most of the public transport that comes from UMS's direction would undoubtedly be full of students going to town as that is their only mode of transport unless they are rich enough to afford their own wheels. Got onto a mini bus that reminded me so much of the days of the pink hell roaders from Kl's past. Beside the fact that the bus was packed with about 40 people and the walkway was already jammed packed, the conducter ushered us in and screamed for the passengers to make way in that sardine can. Without a choice, Laura and I crammed into the tight space where there isn't even room to squirm around in. The first thing I noticed was that the ceiling was actually lower than my entire height! I groaned at the fact that I had to bend my body to the point of a contortionist to fit in and every bump the bus went over threatens to make the bump on my head grow ever bigger. My frame also makes me an exceptional lane jammer as the walkway between seats are just centimeters apart and when the conductor moves to the back, I'm crushing the person I'm next to and also in too close a bodily contact with the conduxtor.At least it was still better than the time I had to board a boat in Semporna, bent my body 90 degrees to get in and when I straightened caught the hard beam of the boat's room square in my forehead! I've never seen so pretty and numerous stars during daytime in my entire life before this.

Shopping is not also easy, a trip to get new sneakers from the local retailers can turn into a whole city hunt for the item I want. Why? Because the stock they have in the stores (even for national brands such as Bata) don't have anything to rival my size 10 feet, the most they'll go is 8 or on rare occasions a size 9. Thus I learnt that locals here a more of the short, petite and small framed variety compared to my 175 cm, 35 inch girth and size 10 feet. Getting clothes that will allow me to move about comfortably is also a chore as the shoulder cuts are often too narrow for my broad shoulder. Oh well, maybe it's a good thing that this week a local shoe company will be conducting a survey for UMS students to determine their average feet sizes, maybe in the near future my gigantic feet will find comfortable foot wear. I recalled going for two months without proper sandals and had to make do with a pair of thongs until I could head back to Kl and get a pair.

The second thing I found out today was the sheer joy of accomplishing something. It doesn't have to be a grand achievement, saving the world, get promoted or win a contest. But the simple fact that a little event can brighten your day considerably is proof that happiness is yours to determine and not brought on by others. I went bowling with Laura and for the first time in my whole bowling experience, I managed a strike! Ok so it's not that great a feat as some of the more 'profesional' bowlers out there would critique, but after so many gutter balls and below 20 scores, getting this one single strike really made my day. What's more it came after a disparing first play where I only managed to down 40 odd pins, and the strike finally came at the last throw on the second game and gave me for the first time again a bowling score of 96 pins. Yup after there I was just beaming :)

So there two little story of my life today, it's Laura's birthday tomorrow and I'm planning to throw her the gift at midnight tonight! To find out what she received, tune in tomorrow ;) Hopefully it'll be like my bowling today and STRIKE! and not strike out :D

On a smaller note : Signed and paid for my Masters registeration today, it's confirmed I'm stuck here for at least another 2 years!

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