Monday, May 31, 2004

Well, I'm back. That wasn't so bad. The airport hotel in Narita, Japan didn't have Internet connection ( cause it's a FUNC-TIO-NAL hotel ), so I couldn't blog about probably the only girl who's given me a second look ( eye-to-eye contact! ) in... oh, too long. She was wearing a white t-shirt and had like rectangular spectacle frames and was pushing a shopping cart and the biggest eyes and was hot in a very subtle and toned down manner. Okay, I gave her the second look because I thought she was hot. She probably gave me the second look because I was going with the ruffled-yet-not-entirely-rugged look. Maybe she thought I looked freaky, what with my jetlagged Chinese looks and devastated complexion ( America did quite a number on my face - I now have Clint Eastwood's skin ). Oh yes, she was hot.

And hot too was the porter outside the Hilton Hotel. Big eyes, rather longish nose, petite... and VERY STRONG, judging from the way she was hefting luggage bags almost as big as her around. She's like, Buffy-chan the Vampire Slayer. If I ever write Jap slayer-fic, I will write her!

So my infatuation with beatiful blonde women was grounded with those damnably pretty Japanese women. I like it. I feel like I've accomplished something, even though in reality I'm just back to being that infernally perverted bastard you probably won't want raising your sons. Although I'm sure I'll turn them into FINE SPECIMENS OF MEN ( emphasis on the word 'specimen' - they will be specimens ). Now I'm back, I'm cool with life, but how long will this last? Probably not too long, although the Fast & Furious and Mr. India were good teachers. They bantered well with each other, and were superb specimens for observation. The lessons I've gained from interacting with them will hopefully persist for awhile at least, if not forever.

Jetlagged again. I think I'll go hit my bed after this.

And yes, Takeshi Kaneshiro likes to play with sticks. AMEN.

Thursday, May 27, 2004

There was much waking up early to do yesterday because of our customer visit. We were all royally half asleep in front of the plant by 7am ( I woke up at 5.49am, a most ungodly hour ), waiting for our sales contact to meet us. After the consumption of immense ammount of coffee, we took a nice drive along the jam-packed highway to meet the nice people at the Deerfield Public Works.

Probably the nicest thing about the Public Works department is the pretty lady handling the front desk and the console. Ooh... hot American woman, so unlike all those starved-looking Paris Hilton clones strutting around Fort Lauderdale. Apart from her, there wasn't anything else much interesting, unless you like jumping into the seats of garbage trucks or admiring squirming maggots in the blazing sun.

Speaking of the sun, all that hot sun and the beach *cough* and a most satisfying lunch and the travelling and the waking up early meant that most of us suffered through a horrible afternoon. My struggle to keep awake in order to finish something which really really had to be finished was most valiant indeed, and triumph I did in the end over sleep and drowsiness. My hopes for turning in early were dashed though - I had a conference call at night which I had to attend, which prompted another most courageous battle to keep awake.

This Saturday morning promises to be absolutely brilliant in the sense that I'll probably have to wake up at 4am or something just to catch my bloody plane home. And there's that feeling that going home is something really necessary at this stage. I'm liking the fantastic portions of food which Americans serve, but then my clothes have gotten too tight. Also, I can feel my muscles starting to undergo entrophy - and that is facking facking bad.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

It really sucks when your hotel room doesn't have Internet access. Urgh.

Now in: Plantation, Florida. Where the roads are like a luxury car parade. See in real life how the cars people forward to you in emails really look! I'm getting so farking jaded, Malaysian roads are going to look absolutely sorry when I get home.

Previously, I wasn't in St. Louis. I was in St. Peters. It was only after we dropped off our Chicago contact that we went off to St. Louis, drove over the Mississippi River, got lost in East St. Louis, drove back to downtown St. Louis and went to see the St. Louis Arch. The Gateway to the West. Woo hoo. Loved the old buildings in St. Louis lots. Then we went back to St. Peters where I had a lot of beer in the hotel ( social hour = free Bud Lite ).

We flew in to Florida on Thursday evening while our Indian colleague flew off to Chicago. It's warm here in Florida. Warm and humid, just like home. Not as hot as home, of course, but no more bracing cool winds. Florida is the sunshine state with good reason - the sun here is way too bright. We drove down to Miami and Miami Beach on Saturday - the beach was way too bright, but the water was lovely. This is probably one of those rare times when I wish that I packed sunglasses with me. It's so bright, you could go blind just looking at the sunbathers. I find myself not really being able to appreciate the women here. They either look decidedly unAmerican ( Spanish? Cuban? ) or they're Paris Hilton-lookalikes. Not really liking the sunken eye tanned skin look - having a golden tan shows that you've been spending time on the beach, and if you've got that much time, you're really too free. I'm so missing the Springfield look.

The action's not all down south in Miami, though. On Saturday night, we headed east to Fort Lauderdale and ended up in Las Olas Boulevard, where the rich and yuppie-ish hang out. Me and the Fast & Furious ( cause Mr. India only joined us the next night ) had to park the car quite a distance away, because the parking there was USD5 per entry. We very much preferred the USD1.25 per hour meter parking.

There was where we saw the stretch Hummer. It's like a stretch limo, only this is a Hummer. I thought that was pretty impressive, and I'm still suspecting that the owner was a Colombian druglord or something. Otherwise, the entire road was pretty much your normal area for the rich. The restaurants there were classy and expensive-looking, the shops along that stretch were expensive-looking and rather artsy-fartsy looking. People here are really too rich.

Actually, too rich is kinda an understatement. One of the nicer things I've seen here are houses where the front door opens out to the road, and each house has a boat parked in their backyard, which is actually a large stretch of water connected to the sea. Bloody hell. I heard things get even more expensive down in Key West, where land is really expensive because the whole area's islandish. Someone said that the poorest guy there has a few millions to his name - that's probably not too improbable.

I'm not too thrilled with Miami or Florida on the whole. Place reminds me too much of home because of the heat, people speak Spanish half the time, there are houses with lakes in the backyards where alligators occasionally sun themselves in the sun and ducks go waddling by in the afternoon... okay, so I like the lake and waddling ducks concept, but not appreciating the alligators. Nor do I really like the vacation and decadently rich vibes this place gives off. It feels too... lazy. Give me Springfield and the honest farmer feel, or St. Louis and the working man atmosphere ( there're real old industrial buildings there ). People should be contributing to society, yeah.

Now that I'm planted in Plantation for about a week, I've finally been able to buy large packets of chips and a 2-litre bottle of CHERRY COKE. God I miss Cherry COke. Watch me double my weight and size when I get home.

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

St. Louis, Missouri.

I'm already missing Springfield. Gone is that lovely smalltown atmosphere. The traffic itself screams city. Kinda like the Federal Highway in KL, except the lanes are wide and numerous. And the cars are huge. Taking our rented 4WD out for a spin was fun in Springfield, but I don't think I want to even get behind the wheel in St. Louis. The cars here are fast, so me and my Indian colleague will leave the driving to our Fast & Furious ( F&F ) colleague.

We haven't been around much - the drive from Springfield took about four hours, but only because Mr. F&F stayed within the speed limit. Something everyone else around us wasn't doing.

I guess my lack of buoyant happiness today is due to us having to leave Springfield. It was just starting to really grow on me. And those sweet blonde girls... sigh. Not that there aren't any sweet blonde girls here in St. Louis. I think it might be a Midwest thingy, cause most, if not all, of the Caucasian girls I've seen here are blonde. I'm not complaining. They're all very nice and just like the girls back home, very unattainable.

All right. I'm just infatuated with the girls and the food here. But life here, or life in Springfield at least, promises to be idyllic. Imagine never having to deal with backstabbing office colleagues again! Just farm farm farm cattle cattle screw slaughter sell. The life of a farmer for me ( with pretty blonde wife ). And the food portions they serve here are obscene. Horribly obscene. Out of habit I've been finishing my food. Now I feel so stuffed I can't sleep. I think I might just have doubled my weight! The horror! The horror!

But that's what you get when you're in the land of brilliant burgers, excellent milkshake and pretty blonde girls. Not to mention 6-lane highways, large trucks, pretty blonde waitresses, pretty blonde girls playing soccer and oh God I need to get home this is really getting to me.

Monday, May 17, 2004

Springfield, Missouri.

I like the small town vibes which this place seems to be giving off. Maybe it's because everything is nicely spaced, not like Georgetown, Penang where everything is tightly clustered together. Maybe it's the different culture. Or, maybe it's the near-deserted town which me and my colleagues were walking through two nights ago in search of an Italian restaurant which is closed on Sundays.

I couldn't help noticing how cool that 'ghost town' look was. There we were, the three of us, walking down that empty street. Occasionally but not too often, a car zooms by. The wind in Missouri is chilly and strong ( this is a good thing ), so there was coldness to be felt even though I had a pint of Budweiser ( also a good thing ) sloshing around in my stomach. Really, it's not too different from home. In Georgetown, traffic starts getting heavy on Friday night and peaks on Saturday night, and on Sunday night traffic usually dies away. Not that it ever dies away to the extent traffic in Springfield died away ( pretty much dead here ).

The layout of the town is designed to be neat square blocks of buildings, so theoretically, you can't really get lost in Springfield. Missed your turning? Just take the next one and circle the block. My colleagues told me that's the design of most American towns. It makes things tidy and navigation easy once you've gotten that concept.

Traffic is minimal here. My colleagues who have been to Plantation and Miami assured me that traffic in those places are pretty heavy and busy. I had fun driving around for awhile, although I still can't get the hang of automatic gear ( manual for me, yeah ). And later one we figured that we were not the ones who kept drifting over to the right side of the road - it was our rented Blazer which was doing all that drifting.

For a small town, Springfield has a surprising large number of cars. But you won't see them all in one place unless you're at a mall ( the Battlefield Mall ) or a soccerplex. My Indian colleague and I took a wrong turn somewhere yesterday evening and we ended up at the local soccerplex where there was a game going on ( bunch of young girls playing soccer ). Just like in the movies! Except that I've never seen girls playing soccer in an American movie, but apart from that, the atmosphere was there.

And girls? Pretty girls all over Springfield, from the hot busty types we saw in the mall *cough* to Samantha our waitress at the Waffle House along the West Bypass, who's the tall leggy blonde type. And this is just a small town. Imagine the other towns!

After spending some time driving around, I think I've come to really like this town. Would be nice to settle down here. Be a farmer or something. Lovely place. So much land. Minimal traffic, and they have everything here. People should consider coming here for a relaxing vacation, or even to live permanently.

Next stop: St. Louis.

Sunday, May 16, 2004

Previously on Prosian Thoughts...

8th May 2004, Saturday: Drove to KL at night, arrived some time before midnight. Bunked in Darke's place.

9th May 2004: The price of helping Darke finish his alcohol - A Serious Lack of Sleep. The morning sun shining directly into Darke's room proved to be an effective sleep repellent. Went shopping for my father's laptop after that, then went to watch Hellboy.

10th May 2004: Visa interview in the American embassy. After making me wait for half a day, they were nice enough to let me go without asking me too many questions. Fell asleep a few times on the way home, but I made it back.

11th May 2004: A case of travel fatigue during work.

15th May 2004, Saturday: Night flight to America begins. Because we were flying business / first class, me and my colleague got to visit the Golden Lounge. It was a little smallish, but they had nice fried rice and bee hoon there. After a brief transit in KLIA, we finally took off for Narita Airport. Sometime before midnight, we flew by Kuala Lumpur. I actually saw the Twin Towers from a distance. Later on, we found out that there were six engineers from my company all in that same plane. So much for company policy of not putting all the eggs into the same basket.

16th May 2004: Japan came out at us from the mist. Already jetlagged by this time. Narita Airport reminded me a lot of LV-426 from Aliens when we first arrived. It was misty, drizzly, the tarpaulins were all flapping in the wind and there wasn't a soul in sight ( they came in much later ).

16th May 2004, Reloaded: First there was Fort Worth, Texas. And now I'm in Springfield, Missouri. Meeting the Simpsons.



Jetlagged.

Obviously. What with that Japanese bastard spoiling my First Class experience by exhaling alcohol-filled disease-ridden halitosis at me when that drunk bastard was sleeping. There are people who deserve a painful death, and then there are people who should be kept alive for eternity to be tortured incessantly. Now I feel horrible. I need to keep awake until after dinner so that I can adjust to the time here, but everytime I close my eyes, I start zoning out.

Anyway, some thoughts on stuff:
  • The jetlag I'm experiencing is very similar to what I experienced after the alcohol binge in Dark's place last week.
  • Airplane food isn't too bad.
  • Contrary to what my bastard colleagues said, America does have pretty women. Of course, I'm in Missouri and they were commenting about Florida.
  • I can't believe how smooth things went with American immigration when we arrived. Us run-down looking engineers were let off pretty quickly, but the clean-cut engineer was detained in a room. I guess if you can come out of a long flight like that looking spiffy, you're suspicious.
  • When I retire, I might want to start a farm in Texas. There's something appealing about the flatlands. So... much... land...
  • Man, that female engineer who was with us is HOT. And of course, those are usually unavailable.

Saturday, May 08, 2004

Buffy's got the muscle to inspire our spiritual side

To Kuykendall, the show is positively faith-promoting.

Seeing Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" made him feel he could never be as self-sacrificing as Jesus, he says. "But I can be like Buffy."

The Simoniac, Hel and I went for lunch yesterday. And on the way back, the Simoniac decided to give some Malay guys riding motorcycles a salt bath. Which wasn't a very nice thing to do, in my opinion. There you are, having just finished with the afternoon prayers in some surau, and then this big-ass monster of a car comes roaring down the road, splashing you with dirty sea water.

I blame the high tide. And a lack of conscience on someone's part. I know I was temporarily wracked with guilt about it. Those "Oh my God what have we done to those poor people" feelings tormented me for awhile. And then, just like that, they were gone.

Confusecius says:

"The more bad things you do, the less worse you'll feel about them."