November 2010 was Amazing Thailand month for me. I spent 10 days in Bangkok. Quite a long stretch. But I did not get to see much of the city. It was hard work, 0900-1800 every day, except Sunday. This, coupled with the fact that the hotel was a good many kilometers outside the city, made me only see the city proper from the taxi – from the airport and back to the airport.
Then came December 2010. It was a hectic month. For one week at the beginning of the month I and a colleague found ourselves in Busan, Korea. Our flight there was just several tense days after the North fatally shelled one of the South’s border islands, resulting in retaliatory shelling by the South, and the North counter-retaliating with threats of more on the way should the then coming South Korea-US military exercises were to proceed.
We did NOT want to go to Korea. We asked the boss’ views of the situation (read – please boss, tell us don’t go) , but the boss said “well, Busan is in the south of the country, quite far from the hot spot..should be OK”. Little comfort to us. The boss might have chosen to not remember that Incheon airport was effectively near the border with the North…
At KLIA airport we prayed hard that a miracle would happen – that Malaysia Airlines would cancel the flight on their own accord or upon advice by the government. But nothing of the sort materialized. Despite the tense situation between the two Koreas, the flight to Incheon was full.
Anyway, we made it to cold Incheon then to freezing and foggy Gimpo and finally arriving in Busan at the cold but still beautiful Haeundae Beach. Five days later we bundled ourselves on the earliest morning flight out of Busan to Incheon and 3 hours later were safely cocooned on Malaysia Airlines Airbus A330-300 back to Malaysia.
Scarcely one week home, I was out again – to Shenzhen, China, for another week. Similar to Bangkok and Busan, the Shenzhen trip was no joy. It was daily morning-till-night work.
It is now January 2011. And I had thought this would be a peaceful month where I could spend quality time with the family on terra firma here in Kuala Lumpur. But today I and another colleague were told that we were required to go to Vietnam later this month. For company and country….