3 days in

there are probably a couple of hundred books out there that have labelled a certain location – town, country, planet – a “contradiction”. three days into my short short trip in the united kingdom and i feel like there is no contradiction here at all. it’s as if this collection of countries has already realised who it is, what it is. there is no identity crisis. the countryside is the countryside, the towns are the towns.

it’s so…settled and comfortable. like no one would ever wanna change it anymore because it’s in a good place.

this is foreign to me. malaysia is ever-evolving, sometimes not for the better, and we are constantly demanding for change. there’s no feeling of finality…like we’re on a train journey that hasn’t reached its destination yet. we hope and we hope and get restless legs while at it, but it just never seems to end.

perhaps it’s the notion branded into my brain that the colonists know best and therefore what they have here is exactly how malaysia should be like. i don’t know.

i just wonder when my country will get here and if it will be a good thing when we do.

i’m currently in manchester, about to make my “pilgrimage” to old trafford. the town reminds me of melbourne in winter, but i guess it’s because of the trams and the rain and wind that greeted me as i got off the train from london. part of me is rather pleased that london’s traffic is far far worse than in kl – maybe that’s one thing the colonists got wrong – but it was surreal to see the most iconic buildings in the world up close and realising that they are bigger in their physical form than their reputation could ever be.

i wanted to ask a londoner: what’s it like living and walking among these buildings and structures so steeped in history? the answer to that unspoken question came to me as i passed a stretch of traffic congestion leading up to a busy pedestrian crossing near the under-restoration houses of parliament…

…it must be pretty darn annoying.

there was a london underground strike threatening to throw the rush hour commute into chaos yesterday. i was just glad i was already on the train to manchester. =)


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