Being the only daughter in the family, I grew up as an overprotected girl. Well, at least I think I am.
So it was really a big thing when my mum actually gave me the permission to travel alone by bus from Kajang to Gua Musang. I took a 9.00 pm bus ticket, but of course, it didn't depart exactly at 9.00 pm. And arrived at around 3.30 am. I know it must have been hard for my mum to let me travel alone, but a promise is still a promise.
I travelled alone. To Kelantan. Okay.
Just imagine this. Even from Shah Alam to Bangi, she insisted on picking me up.
Now, can you imagine KELANTAN. hoi.
She promised to let me go off for a holiday if I worked hard enough. I still remember the day. I finished my final exam at 12.30 noon, and yes, exactly the same day, I took a bus to Kelantan.
It was my second time going to Gua Musang. I went for an outreach, a tiger conservation programme. Two years ago, I joined the same programme. But now, I came as a different person.
Along the way, I do had a lot of time to think. And actually reflect back everything...
Two years ago, back then I wasn't wearing hijab.
So you see, it really was like taking a time out. You go back to the place and reflect everything. I thought of all the things I've done. During the programme, I met someone who joined the same programme with me two years ago. A local.
I'm not so good in the Kelantan language, but I could still understand a bit.
"Dua tahun lepah dengan sekarang, satu je perubahe. Perubahe menjurus kebaike"
(Two years ago, there's only one change. A change towards the better)
Being away from home, plus the place we stayed in had very poor coverage, it really relaxes the mind. And it made me focus more on what I'm there for, to do my part in conserving our tigers.
It has been months since the Kelantan getaway, but really, everytime I think about it, it would make me smile. And have a good feeling inside. The main thing here is... Hey, I actually managed to get away from home!