It's 530 pm; we leave for the airport in less than 5 hours. It's that time of the trip when I'm dreading the countdown- the few hours and minutes I have left to be with family and friends before our next visit. This has been an unusual, unbelievably busy trip with the wedding and travelling we've had to do, but it's been a blast, nonetheless.
But now, it is time to go. Sigh.
If things go according to plan, I should be seeing my family again at year's end, this time at our new home. And I should be visiting Malaysia again sometime next year.
But, though this is my 10th year being away, leaving Malaysia never gets easier. It never does. Ask anyone who has been abroad. Not when family, friends, loved ones; not when your culture and roots remain. So many memories.
I remember one year when a friend call as we were driving to KLIA, and she started singing 'Leaving on a Jet Plane' over the phone- I was close to crying buckets then.
Kristin saw this firsthand last year- I basically sulk in my last 24 hours in Malaysia (okay, admittedly I did have a good time at lunch with Jimbo just now), right up to Incheon International Airport in Korea. The times when I'm most prone to being teary-eyed are when I hug my family goodbye at the departure hall, and when the airplane captain accelerates down the runway at take-off (Hopefully the pretty Korean Air attendants will distract me). I always make a silent prayer as we're taking off. I shall again tonight.
Lord, please look after my family and friends while I'm gone, and keep them safe. Please look after my country, and her people.
Till the next year, folks, take care.