(The Thinker at the Petronas Twin Towers wading pool)
(one of my favorite buildings in the world)
(magnificent, especially at night)
After 36 hours of travel, including a 12-hour layover in Seoul where we got a hotel to rest our weary eyes, we are finally home. Exhausted. Three days later, our suitcases are still where we left them as we came in through the front door, the refrigerator is crying out for inhabitants, and our usual routine is still not very usual. But we're happy to be home.
Took us three weeks in another country to appreciate some of the things we took for granted here everyday, such as:
- 24/7 connection to the Internet (My Guy is a geek, and I've picked up some bad habits from him)
- customer service (four words: I HATE AIR ASIA)
- street signs that actually take us to our destination (although we got lost a few times, serendipity took us someplace better)
- cooler weather (it was scorching hot the first week we were there. A heatwave apparently, like it wasn't warm enough normally)
- our routine (even if that includes work, although it isn't the part I miss most)
- our neighborhood (where many things are within walking distance, unlike where we were in Malaysia where we had to drive just to get bread)
- access to great music (seems like there were only two choices there: contemporary pop or 80s power ballad. what the...?)
- the four seasons (although there was a blizzard the night we left, we came home to glorious 65-degree weather and flowers blooming shyly on the sidewalk. That always puts a spring in my step!)
- our pets (even if they do take up most of the room on the bed)
(what better way to battle the heat wave?)
For me, the experience was a little different as I saw things from two dichotomous perspectives: why I miss it and why I'm glad I left. And that just wasn't easy, especially when those two collided so often. I am fiercely proud of my culture, my childhood and my family, and I still have such great friends there, so Malaysia will always be a part of me. I mean, where else can I go to croon (badly) at a karaoke lounge all through the night and end with spicy, tongue-numbing mamak food to quell the munchies at 4 in the morning?
(I won't ever be able to listen to Black Eyed Peas' "I Gotta Feeling" without thinking of this night, and these girls, again)
(a Wonderwall duet. Something I never thought I'd see in this lifetime! Thank you six pitchers of beer)
But if home is where the heart is, I am here, where I landed 16 years ago. I only hope someday Little Miss will appreciate her heritage - my legacy - as she finds her own place in this world. Wherever that may be.