March 26, 2012 § 6 Comments
“…perhaps this is a mistake.”
That was the first thought running through my mind when I step off the plane. I had no idea what the heck I was doing, or what I was trying to prove. But here I am, alone, by myself, half-way around the world, in a destination that I was not too familiar with. Out of my comfort zone, into a world full of unknown, I was petrified on the inside, but my mind was made up. It was just one step after another, you just simply go with the crowd.
The hallway was small. Smaller than the usual airports that we have here in the States. But as soon as the plane pulled into the airport, you can tell people were anxious. Foreigners were well behaved, but Vietnamese people were just an embarrassment. Some people started standing up and getting their luggage from the upper compartment while the plane was still in motion. You would understand their feeling, but they should have some control over themselves, if not for them, for their kids that came with them. What kind of example would you set if you don’t follow the rules and has some sort of order? If the adult could not control themselves, their kids will never be able to do so.
I hate impatient people. So I sat as far back of the plane as possible. This way, I just relax and wait till everyone pushed and shoved each other out of the plane.
It has been a long while since I came back to Vietnam. I was afraid my Vietnamese would not be sufficient for me to communicate with the local. Going through customs, I was terrified. What if I the guy ask me something I don’t know? What if he makes it difficult for me? If I speak English, would he comprehend? No way, I look too Asian to do something like that! I will just use whatever Vietnamese I had at that time.
It was true what they say. These folks working here, they are the most unfriendly people ever. I don’t know how they treat foreigners but they were very stern. No eye contact, except when they compare your face to your passport. It wasn’t even an eye contact; it was more like, staring you down to see if you react funny. The rest of the time, they just stare at their slow….. slow computer. My GOD! No wonder why this country is so behind. It takes 5-10 minutes to get a person through while the bulk of it was waiting on the computer to respond. I can clearly see the mouse with the circle loading.
As I stood there, things go through my head. Sort of like, you slept with someone questionable, now you’re going for testing. As you wait for the result, you start going through all the possible scenarios. What if there was a mistake and I happen to be an international criminal? My record is so long that it’s taking forever for the computer to load. What if there was some mistake with my passport? A date is off, or there was some sort of misspelled word. Or maybe, I had something in my luggage that I shouldn’t have, and now I’m stuck here because there was some sort of early signal to hold me back.
Finally, the custom agent start going to town with the computer, and everything was done. He hands me my paperwork and off I go to get my luggage. That wasn’t too bad, but it was nerve wrecking. I have never traveled internationally by myself before. What a rush.
- Chapter 1. Page one (tanguyenable.wordpress.com)
March 9, 2012 § 5 Comments
In front of me is a car that refuses to go the speed limit. I have been going behind it for the last 10 minute. It was ok up until two or three minutes ago. Apparently, during the last seven minutes I was wondering if the car would see me close behind and speed up, or will it remain its constant (slow) speed of 37 in a 45 zone. The answer is, the car ahead does not care to go any faster, nor does it care that I am tailgating.
I’m looking behind to see if there are any other cars as pissed as I am. There is none.
I look on the opposite lane to see if any car is coming. The coast is clear.
Alright, I made up my mind to overtake the car ahead of me! I have places to be (lies). Shifted the gear back to 3rd, revved up the engine, put out my signal to overtake and BOOM!
I passed the car… as it take a right turn.
So that overtake did not feel as good as it should. That car ahead of me just totally robbed me of my feeling good moment. Unbelievable! I couldn’t believe it. All those frustration that I had piled up till that point was still there, but the person that was causing the problem was gone. Simply gone! They are no longer bothering me, but something else still is not right. It was ME!
I was the problem the whole time. It wasn’t the guy ahead of me that is provoking my dangerous driving habits. It was me that want to become daring in order to feel strongly about something, and the guy in front of me just happen to be an excuse for me to do it.
I have realized that after I committed to overtake that he had been increasing his speed to 50 mph because I had to run over +60 mph to pass him. But surprisingly, he chose to be the better man (woman) and left the path that I was taking. How many of us can be as noble as to take a right turn in order to avoid unnecessary conflict with our fellow man? All it took was the right decision to make a right turn and do a U-turn to get back on that same road after the maniac (me) is gone.
I felt so bad because in my rearview mirror, the car appear about 30 seconds after the pass, and instead of chasing me down and tailgating the way I did to him/her, they kept a noticeable distance. But the horror ensues when I came to a RED LIGHT! I was totally embarrassed! The car slowly stopped right behind my car. All the effort put into overtaking someone to get to somewhere, and in the end, I have gotten nowhere fast.
If only I remained calm, be more patient, considerate, for another human being, my well deserve embarrassment wouldn’t be so much. If the usual people driving on the road are as thoughtful as that car ahead of me, we would not have so much road rage.
The only thing left to do was, turn down the window, stick my head out, turn back, and yell, “I’m sorry! I was an ass!” The man nodded. The story ends.
But my life is still going. I have learned a lot about myself. I want to be more patient and considerate for others. I want to be wiser when dealing with unfavorable situation. I must not be selfish in my dealing with others. And most importantly, I must be Honest, first with myself, then others.
What have you learn about yourself when you’re driving?