Thursday, August 7, 2008

Turkish Delight - Day 1 & 2

Day 1 &2 : 19th Oct 07

I checked the travel itinerary. 2 ½ hours bound to Doha. Not having my watch on, the flight seemed like eternity. After getting no shut eye in KLIA for 4 hours since midnight, it is only normal for someone to drown into sleep in the airplane. But the Qatar plane was so small, I cant even curl my legs up for comfort. After some struggle to sleep, the lights turned on and dinner was served. What? In the middle of the night?

Su & I was puzzled why the flight took so long. Hmm…maybe the plane was flying slow? The pilot went to the wrong direction? It took us quite some time before we realized that we are flying back in time. There is a 6 hours difference from Malaysia to Turkey. DUH! Why we never figured that from the beginning? Don’t we feel weird that it only takes 2 ½ hours to Doha while it took us 6 hours to Japan? No wonder it feels like forever, the total time we were stucked in the flight was more than 7 hours! I called for the stewardess to bring me some water. But there was no response. The stewardess were scurrying here and there attending to passengers in need. But no one came to me. I got tired and switched the bell off. The flight attendant bells were heard throughout the flight. I guessed no one is comfortable in this flight at all! Why would they use such a small plane for such a long journey!

As the journey turned more excruciating, just like a voice from heaven, came a voice from the PA. “Ladies and gentlemen, we will be landing in Doha shortly. Estimated arrival time will be 6:30AM “

Doha. The only time I’ve heard of this place as the Asian Games last year. But the stream of flying nightmares has yet to end. We have a 4 hour wait time before our next connecting flight. We were told that it is all right as Qatar has a 5 star airport facility. Well, is it real? Well, we’ll see about that.

Hmm…it’s fair the airport looks all right. But not as nice compared to KLIA. Just some hours ago while we were in KLIA, giant banners were screaming KLIA was once again awarded as the best airport in the world. Well, one thing that I am proud of for my own country. Bravo to our ex Prime Minister for spearheading this project. Now nobody would say it is a waste of money. Which other airport has aerotrains commuting fellow flyers from arrival to departure building? Most airports use buses to transport passengers from airplanes to the arrival halls. Besides, KLIA houses over various species of plants, has clean rest rooms in every nook and corner, large shopping and dining area and it even houses a radio station-FlyFM. The “fly” radio station in the country. OK, u guys must be thinking…how much did the government pay for this gal to promote this? Hehe…

Back to Doha. One additional thing I noticed in this airport, which I did not seem to see in any other airport is that is has a Quiet Room. Now what is a Quiet room? A room to read, pray, sound proof? Guess, guess? Well, it’s none of the above. Quiet=sleep of course! It has Ogawa-looking chair where passengers waiting to get some rest or sleep. Unfortunately, every single chair was taken in this dark & quiet room. Well, except for some loud snoring from some old dude somewhere. Oh well, just too bad as we were real tired and getting some sleep is just so perfect.

Su & I resorted to the chairs outside. It’s only 6:30AM and the sky is bright as 9AM. We dozed a bit then I went to freshen up. After I came back, sitting on my place and next to Su was this dude in a suit. The guy was facing towards Su and obviously, the position looked like they have been talking. However, it is strange as Su was looking straight and there was no word spoken.
I sat down and looked at Su. That dude was still there. He was smiling at me now and said “Hi” to me. “Do you speak good English?” he asked me in a heavy middle-east accent.
“Not bad” “Well, your friend told me you speak good English”

OK Su. What have you gotten me into this time? We sat there all quiet and totally weird. I just got to know that he is a hockey coach from Iran. I wanted to laugh as I can see he was trying hard to speak to us but he can’t. He took out some chocolates and gave us each. Then we sat there in silence again.

Then he asked “Where you come from?”

“Malaysia” Su replied. He looked lost.

“Malaysia, near Singapore” His lost look remained.

“Near Thailand” Lost again.

“Indonesia” Still lost.

“Phillipines” Su said almost giving up.

“Oh! Phillipines. Yes” Well, where this guy came from? He don’t know where all these countries are?

Then, silence again. I was giving signs to Su. Su told the guy. “Well, we are going for breakfast now”

“No. No” He replied.

No? I mean No? I thought he don’t want us to leave? After some gestures, I only figured out that he was trying to say that he can’t join us. I mean…Hello? We weren’t even asking!
We almost ran away from this weird dude!

Finally, 4 hours passed and we got to the flight to Istanbul. Luckily it’s only 4 hours. Else my butt will get fried again. 4 hours and we reached Turkey. Finally!

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