Miri, Borneo Island in Malaysia(Catherine!!You are a Goddess!!), Sep 12, 2013

On the 12th of September 2013, I was supposed to be at Gunung Mulu National Park, Borneo Island in Malaysia on this schedule.

No Departure Point Arrival Point Departure Time Arrival Time Air Line
(1) Kuala Lumpur Miri 10:15 12:30 Malaysia AirLines
(2) Miri Mulu 13:45 14:15 MASwings

When I was at the gate of ‘(1)Kuala Lumpur – Miri’ airplane,
the board showed ‘Delayed’.
I had nothing to do.
I opened a Malay textbook for beginner.
The airport staffs continually announced flight schedule and called their passengers’ names.
I carefully listened to announcement.
« Yeah, I can hear ‘Terima Kasih(In English: Thank you)’.
Yeah, I can hear ‘satu, dua, tiga(which means 1, 2, 3)’. »
The point is to find what makes you happy, no matter how small things.
In that way, I really get the knack of how pleasantly I spend waiting time through a bunch of past trip trouble.

Taking off time was almost noon.
Landing time was about 2:00PM.
But, I was not worried about anything.
MASwings is a subsidiary of Malaysian Airlines.
At that time, I thought ‘(2)Miri-Mulu’ airplane must be waiting for me.

I stood up from my seat as an almost last passenger to get off the airplane.
« After you » said a nice guy to me.
At that time, I didn’t think I would spend 5 days with this guy named Mathieu.

At Kuala Lumpur International Airport,
an airplane staff told me my baggage would be directly sent to Mulu.
But I found my baggage at baggage claim.
« Something is wrong. »
I looked for a ticket booth in a hurry.

I got a numbered ticket.
While I was waiting for my turn,
a Canadian couple came into this booth.
One guy was Mathieu and the other was a good-looking and lively lady named Catherine.

I looked at them again and again, and they also did.
We figured out that they/he must be going to Mulu.
We asked each other « Mulu? » at the same time.

My turn came finally. Their turn was 5 more after me.
I asked them for coming with me.
But, they are above skipping to wait or they are strict for manners,
so they turned it down.

Here are some examples how honest they are.
For one thing, they call me my given name ‘Mitsuharu’.
I believe it’s difficult to memorize Mitsuharu for non-native Japanese.
For another thing, at the last night, we promised to wait at a restaurant at 5:30PM.
It was torrential rain at that time.
I thought they must be not there, so I was still at a lodge.
But, they waited there for 30 minutes and they came to my lodge at 6:00PM.
I’m so sorry for that. I apologize here.

Back to story, I explained my situation to the staff.
But, I was confused.
This is because Mulu and Miri resemble in name for me.
Me: « My airplane was delayed to Mulu here. »
Staff: « Mulu? Here is not Mulu. »
Me: « Huh? Mulu? Miri? »
Staff: « Mulu? Miri? »
I made the staff confused.
Anyway, I managed to let her get to know my trouble.
But, unfortunately, all flight was finished.
I agreed with changing my departure date from that day to the next day.

However, there is one thing I couldn’t understand.
That is where I would stay on that day.
Malay accent is really tough for me.

But, Catherine and Mathieu came next to me, while I was unaware.
Catherine explained they also had the same problem and
translated for me with easy-hearing English.
We were provided with Everly Hotel, 2 meals and taxi coupons for nothing.

After out of the booth, Catherine asked me.
Catherine: « What’s your plan tomorrow? »
Me: « I’m going to the Pinnacles. But, maybe I give up. »
Catherine: « You can go there. We will also go there and already changed schedule to 11:00AM. Come with me. »

Catherine took me to a tourism booth and explained to the staff.
My schedule also was well-tailored.
Thanks to Catherine, I ended up not abandoning my plan.
Thank you Catherine for your help. I can’t thank you enough.


At Everly Hotel, I asked a concierge.
Me: « Excuse me. Do you have a free map? »
Concierge: « Yes, Sir. »
I found out here is in a suburb.
I pointed at the center of this town.
Me: « How long does it take to go here on foot? »
Concierge: « It’s far. About 30 minutes. Taxi is better. »
Me: « Hmm. How long? How much? »
Concierge: « 5 minutes. 30RM. »
Me: « It’s better on foot. »

I walked about 10 minutes,
but I couldn’t get to even the edge of the town.
« I have tomorrow. It’s better to keep my energy. »
I pulled back to the hotel.

I hung around the hotel.
I found the sea behind the hotel.
I sat on the beach.
The sunset evoked a sentimental and nostalgic mood inside me.


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