The famous Thai adage rings true as I replied in a meeting full of Indonesians, “Enggak bisa Pak”, as I struggled to keep up with their conversation, applying as much Indonesian as I can, “Kapan”, “Selamat Sore”, “Siap”, “Kertas”, “Kamar”, “Hari Senin”, “Embak”, “Mas”, “Beda”, “Udah” and number of other words that escape me as I write this entry down.

I think the challenge is not on the words use, but like any foreign language, is putting the words in a correct flow of grammar. I guess I manage to fair a little better than most Malaysians simply because of my Sabahan accent influence, so it helps me to deliver the words in a manner that they can understand. West Malaysians don’t really speak proper Malay language, but then again, isn’t the Malay language a collection of borrowed words from other languages, even from Indonesia?

While my absorption rate won’t be as high as the Sabahan slang (because that’s just basically pronouncing the words correctly with a little personalization, it still fun to try to adapt to the local language and watch the ladies smile in delight and compliment my bald look (if only they know how much hair I have on the inside – haha!).

Intially I thought of extending my stay after 6th May for a couple of days, to travel and to attend an Aerosmith concert that weekend, but then I realize I should save my leaves for the end of May when I will experience my first ever Kaamatan with my brother and cousin. Speaking of which, I’ll need to get the tickets soon before the prices skyrocket. Malindo mari.

I’ve no idea what awaits me then, but come what may, I’ll just hop on that rollercoaster and enjoy the ride!