Thursday, September 03, 2009


It's been, what, 3 weeks since I came back to Malaysia. Transition period and lots of adapting back again.

In the beginning was lots of reverse culture shock. To think that I abhorred disliked Tokyo when I first arrived and wanted to get on the first plane back to Malaysia, I'm proud to say I now have a love-hate relationship with Japan.

There's a difference between coming back for holidays and coming back for good.

Still not used to the pollution, the attitude, the mess... My nose wrinkles up and I cringe at all of the things that make Malaysia what it is today.

Yet, this is home.

Yes, this is home.

I miss the cleanliness, safety and convenience of living in Japan. I miss walking to the konbini for a snack. I miss cycling for my baito. I miss going out anytime of the day and yet not feel as if my life could be in danger!

Had about 7 interviews the first 2 weeks I was back, and was purposely pretty much low profile throughout. Most went very well (had a couple of offers), am still applying to a few more. Let's see how things go.

The whole of last week was playing host to friends from Japan. When I suggested the idea back when I was still there, I thought it would be a wonderful idea to introduce Malaysia to my foreigner friends. After coming back to a country that has gone haywire and confused, I realised it was not such a good idea after all.

Plus, I have never brought people around here before. I definitely make a better host in Tokyo than in KL! The horrendous traffic and unreliable public transport system did not help at all. In Tokyo, the nearest station is just 2 minutes' walk and I don't have to contend with krazy drivers and potholes and exorbitant parking fees.

Since Yuri and Geoff were to be my first guests here, I tried to bring them around and show them what Malaysia had to offer. Thank God for friends like Jason, Leo and Alex who became co-hosts and were so generous with their time. One is doing freelance, another has his own business and the other is in between jobs, so that helped with the schedules.

We tried to stuff our guests with glorious Malaysian food, but too bad they don't eat as much as we do! But they seemed to love the variety and spicyness of it all. We even managed to make a day trip down to Malacca and feasted on the chicken rice balls and durian cendol ais kacang. I think it's been a decade since I went back there!

Was a very good experience for myself too, somewhat like rediscovering Malaysia. So now I also have a love-hate relationship with my own country :)

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