Before the advent of the highway
Journey was usually done during the night as it was cooler and comfortable, reaching KL at dawn. Food has to be prepared as there was no R&R then.Our favorite takeaway being nasi minyak + sambal+kangkung+eggs+fried chicken+ boiled potatoes. Yummy!
The common room were at the filthy gas stations or eating places / restaurants along the route.During the festive seasons the journey could take up nearly a day.Along the way you would come across accidents with the injured and fatalities still waiting for the ambulance. Once, the road was too congested that from Perlis to KL we only managed to find a spot to eat our food at Slim River.Some 400 km away!
I still remember one frightening experience when we were travelling cross country to the east coast.The children were still very young. By then we had a Nissan C20 when we decided to return to Perlis from KL by that route.
It was exciting to see the different scenery along the east coast of Malaysia.After having a fine time frolicking on the beach of PCB and shopping in the bazaar we head towards the west coast. We made our way across the mountain range.
We had been travelling quite a while when we suddenly noticed that there was no more traffic passing by .The further we drove., the road was becoming harder. The smooth tarmac road that we used to have turned bumpy and coarser.Stones and gravels surfaced the road instead of tar.
Things turned critical when we came to a junction and could not make out which way to turn to. I came down the car, pushed the dust aside and with a doa made a choice.
We trudged on until we saw a road marking indicating a few miles to Pengkalan Hulu.Our ordeal on this dirt road is over.So we said. More was in store for us after Pengkalan Hulu for the road was even worser than before.
Not once were we not traumatized to notice the barren hill slopes with logs dangling precariously.What if the logs would suddenly make a mind to roll down the hill. God forbids.
I must be reciting my thousandth doa when we arrived dead tired,dust covered in the notorious town of Baling. Only then when we noticed a sign screaming for our attention.
|JALAN BALING –GRIK DI TUTUP KEPADA SEMUA KENDERAAN.SILA GUNA……..|
So a lesson learnt the hard way.Luckily we managed to pull through.What if……….. touch wood.
The next time you travel on an unfamiliar route, be wary of your surrounding and dont take road signs and warnings lightly. I tell you!