Thursday, January 01, 2009

Coolangatta, Gold Coast






Jetstar was reasonably cheap, it cost $150 to cross the ditch. They use airbus plane which is long and narrow. Probably use less fuel too. Service is basic, everything extra cost money, food, entertainment etc. That’s fair, I don’t use or need those things anyway. We arrive at Gold Coast just after 1630, local time. I had some fruits that I thought would pass through the custom. Nope. Had to chuck it away, the custom man say cannot. So that night the custom man must be enjoying my nectarines, apricot and avocados. Bukan rezeki kata orang.
Out of the airport, I walked across the road, looking for the YHA. I should have looked for the direction better in the google earth. Asked a man standing at bus stop, he couldn’t figure out which is Coolangatta Rd. Then I walked across to an Asian man wearing towel in front of his flat. He didn’t know, but he consulted his friend’s GPS navigator, which says only 700m away. Funny, then I realise that his friend was wearing kain pelikat samarinda. They turn out to be Indonesians from Sydney, who have been in Sydney for 15 years. So we converse in Indonesian. They asked me where I came from, I said Christchurch, on the way to KL tomorrow, and I am Malaysian. I am on the way to KL because my father died last week. InnaLillahi wa innailaihi Rajiun, he said. Only then I was sure that they are Muslims. He said when his father died some years back, he only got back to his parents 3 months later.
His friend drove me to the YHA, which is just around the corner, but the GPS navigator gave us a run around.
After shower I walked across to a shop selling drinks and biscuit, then walked to the beach. Brisbane can be seen in the distance in the north coast, while Surfers Paradise to the south.
One of my roommate at the YHA that night was a middle aged man from UK. Looks like he has been staying in that room for a few days. His stuff was arranged neatly, shirts hanging on the rack and a scriptures book on the table. We got talking, and when I told him that I was on my way to Malaysia to visit my father’s grave and visit my mother because my father died last week, he offered his condolences.
He told me that when his father got sick some 15 years ago, he moved back to his parents place and help take care of them. He advised me that the best thing I could do is spend as much time with my mother as possible. Do little things together like doing dishes etc. That will help my mother to go through the grief. He said that some people throw away the belongings of their dead parent, like old clothes stuff. That is the wrong thing to do, because over time, you will appreciate the memories associated with the stuff, and “your mother would like to cherish and keep it too.”
Another thing that people make mistake is to sell their house and buy another one smaller, more manageable place. He said that his sister has been encouraging his mother to sell the house and move to a smaller place. He said he advised his mother against doing that, telling his mother that she might like the memory of that place and if she sell, she cant move back in. He got so much trouble from his sister because of that.

That morning I had free breakfast at the YHA, cereal, orange juice and toast. Well the place is a bed and breakfast YHA. So technically, I paid for the breakfast.
After breakfast I walked over to the airport. The queue at the Air Asia counter was long, and most of the passengers are Malaysian.