I woke up with the thought that I’ll spend the day in Malacca. A small town about 150 km from Kuala Lumpur. I had seen photos of it and I liked it because almost all the buildings were in colonial style. It was really so. It turned out to be a colourful, picturesque and very quiet little town. The buildings were painted in bright colours.
There were flowers everywhere. The ocean was on the side. Old harbour. Small church in bright red. Green roofs of houses. Ancient museum with ruins. I spent my day in a colourful and calm fairy tale. The return transport was at 6 pm. I had two hours, so by 8 pm I’ll be back on track on Petaling Street again. From the bus straight to my favourite street. Tonight was the time of the masks. What masks you ask? Masks made of wood, painted in bright colours. One for me and one for Julian. I bought some of my favourite fruits – rose apples. Tonight, my tactics was to eat my fruits and browse through casually and ask around for the price. To make an impression of a stroller, not a buyer, and if I accidentally decide to buy something, it will be like “Ok, I’ll let it pass”. Well, this tactics worked for the first mask. I found a second one, I bargained for it too, I stuck my hand in the pocket to get out money… I didn’t have! Meaning??! How about that? What happened? I had a lot of money. I brought enough. I had made my calculations, even extra, plus money for just in case. I felt cold shivers down my back, and on top of that I sweated twice. I found only a few Thai bahts and paid the mask with them. Thank goodness he didn’t object. I walked to the hotel quite panicked, and from anxiety the prairie dog started pushing to get out into the middle of the gypsy street. I started counting the money I spent. So, I paid a bag, wait, not one but three bags. How come three, why three? Am I crazy? I began to realize that I had two or three of each product. Discs with movies about ten of them and … I don’t want to think about it. I went into the room and started to ransack. It can’t be possible that I spent all my money. It’s not possible, because I’m not that kind of person, I always keep track of my purchases. No, I have no money anywhere – neither in the bag nor in the passport, nowhere … I stared at one point and realized the ugly truth. I got so lost in this bargaining that without realizing I had spent all the money I had and I couldn’t borrow from anyone. I started dwelling on some schemes. Yavor to send me money from Bangkok, but where to. I don’t have a bank account, and I haven’t even heard of their banks. A thought passed by me that I could sell the stupid stuff I was piling every day, and even enjoyed them. Hmmm, good idea.
I’ll take a white bed sheet from the room, I’ll put it on the ground, and I’ll spread out my merchandise, which was not that little at all. But at that moment I remembered that two days ago I saw how those people with the bed sheets on the ground were pursued by the police and that they might be selling illegally. While they sell, their man goes around looking for police. When he sees the police, he warns the others with sounds, they gather the bed sheet on a bundle and run away. I imagined that sight – stretching my stand on a bed sheet and running away from corner to corner from the local police. Ah, no – thanks. It doesn’t work. Suddenly, to my great regret, I remembered something terrible and very worrying. Because somebody seems to be giving me a lesson – Kuala Lumpur airport is 100 km away from the city and only express train goes there, and it costs money. Hell, and I have no money. So, how will I get to the airport to catch my plane? Just this simple question I want to ask my stupid head, which somehow bugged and spent all the money for junk. The plane is in 3 days. So, tomorrow, the day after tomorrow and already on the third day at 4 pm is the flight. I have no other choice, but tomorrow morning, with all the stuff I bought, to start walking to the airport. Yeah, I know it sucks, but I have no other way out. Step by step through the jungle and for two days I’ll somehow manage to walk the 100 km. I’ll sleep where the night catches me, and I’ll make a bed from the purses, bags and all the shit I bought. I began to pack my luggage and prepare for the march. Well, this time I didn’t fell asleep quickly, quite on the contrary. I couldn’t stop thinking how my mind got blurred these days, and how could I be so stupid. I was twisting and turning, and my little butt was all sweaty from the anxiety. Somehow, half-awake, I dreamed of sitting in a chair and holding a book and going through it. Suddenly I drop it and money falls off of it. I jumped in the bed. What? A book from which money falls? Yes, the book about Malaysia. In it I put the money for my collection, so it won’t wrinkle (I collect banknotes from all the countries I’ve visited). I grabbed the book to see how much I kept there. Ten ringgits, another five and one. Exactly sixteen ringgits. Without hesitation, no pants and bare feet, I ran down the stairs to the front desk to ask how much the train to the airport costs. The answer was 16 ringgits. I couldn’t believe it, hurray, I’m saved and there will be no march. I just couldn’t believe the luck I had. I went back to bed, buried myself under the covers, put my hands under my cheek and sank into peace. I thought everything is good when it ends well. But at this minute I didn’t realize that the troubles were yet to come. I would have realized it in the morning.
I woke up in the morning and remembered the events of the previous night. I already got used to them, and I accepted things more calmly, but something still concerned my mind. Something small, negative and disturbing. Got ready to get out for a walk. I wanted to go to Putrajaya. Yes, it’s a bit long way off, but step by step I’ll walk and I’ll sightsee. But what is this thing that worries me and I think about it all morning. Cold and hot showers poured over me again. I’M HUNGRY!!! No – it was the end of me, really. I started to calculate again. Two full days and another half day I will have to starve. It has never happened to me. I remembered once at NATFA someone was telling how great it was to clean your body by starving for three days and eating only honey and apples. I was curious then and decided to try it. On the first day I somehow managed by eating a whole jar of honey and 1 kg of apples. But with the evening approaching I started thinking about chickens, steaks, moussaka, and so on. I don’t even want to remember the night. I dreamed I was at an ancient Greek feast, and I was a warrior who came back after a heavy battle. The whole country welcomed me with a grand feast. There were pigs, calves, ostrich eggs, as you notice in my dream I went from steaks to whole animals. In the morning I just couldn’t get out of bed – I felt dizzy from hunger, and at around noon I said “It’s over” and stuffed myself with everything from the refrigerator. So, I managed a day and a half then, because I ate honey and apples. Now, I have to last two and a half days with nothing.
To be continued…
12.03.2018 Vladimir Karamazov®