Posts Tagged ‘Ma’

Flea markets suck

November 7, 2010

Okay imagine the worst place imaginable. Got it? Okay now imagine it a hundred times worse. That’s how this goddamn flea market was yesterday (in which I was forced to participate). It was like a combination of Hell, septic tanks, waiting rooms in hospitals, the dentist’s chair when he just told you that he ran out of Novocain but will continue with the root canal anyway, and a kindergarten class. All of those places and feelings just decided to get together and collectively call themselves a flea market.

Let me back up a bit. To five-something in the fucking morning, when it’s still dark outside. Yeah. It was an early start. I was awakened before the crack of dawn, only to be rushed because “we need to leave at 05:30.” What I should have realised was that when Ma said 05:30, she meant a little after six, because that’s when we actually left.

We got to the hell-hole at like six-something. The sun still wasn’t really out, but I was wearing my sunglasses so I could sleep-walk and no one would notice. Then, we proceeded to unload our two full-to-the-brim SUVs of heavy boxes and transport them to our table like 300 metres away (for you Americans, that’s like, I dunno, four blocks or something). I instantly regretted all those times I was *this* close to stealing a shopping cart but never did. Because it really would’ve come in handy.

Anywho, an hour and a half later, everything was finally set up. And from like 8 until 10, things were all okay and normal-ish. Sure there was the occasional freak, but most freaks are still sleeping at that time on a weekend, so it was bearable. Also, things were selling at normal prices.

 

Later, however, the freaks started coming out. They were all unintelligent, weird, semi-OCD, and either smiled way too much or not at all. Many of them looked like the only time they shopped was during a flea market, and they have therefore become experts in the game. Others were just downright greedy. And still others were the kind of freaks where you know they’re not going to buy anything, and they know they’re not going to buy anything, but they still have this unexplainable need to touch EVERYTHING. It was horrible. Not to mention I was hungry and tired and sweaty.

The “haggling” was the best part. And by “best” I mean “worst.” And by “worst”, I actually mean that words can’t really describe the haggle-aspect of what went down.

“Hey how much for this?”

“Oh you mean the 100% silk blouse from DKNY with the tags still on it that says it originally went for $99.99? Uh, I guess I can give it to you at like, a ninety-five percent discount, so let’s say… 20 AED?”

“Really? Not 5?”

“Okay my best price is 15.”

“Are you sure not 5?”

“Yeah I’m sure. Okay 12 is my last price.”

“Aww, boo. Not 5?”

“Goddamn it, fine! Take it for 5!”

“…How about 2?”

Like, are you serious? Then there was this other lady:

“How much is one pillow?”

“One is 10 AED, or you can get all four for 30.”

“But you just said one is 10.”

“…yes.”

“So shouldn’t four be 40?”

“Uhm, yeah, but it’s called a discount. That’s what happens when you buy in bulk.”

“Oh strange. Well, I only want one, so how about I give you… 1.50?”

And this sort of stuff kept happening!┬áBy noon I didn’t give a shit about haggling or anything anymore. I just wanted to get rid of everything so I wouldn’t have to repack it all and schlepp it the whole way back to the car. Also, I was really tired and just wanted to go home to shower and rest.

And later, by the time we were ready to leave, I was practically giving shit away for free, BEGGING people to take it.

 

Eventually, we got rid of 95% of the trinkets, 15 out of 16 pairs of shoes, half the hanging clothes, three-quarters of the folded clothes, and all of the eight pillows. I think that’s pretty good. We came with two cars-full, and we left with just four boxes, which are being sent to charity. Oh and we made over 800 AED, 200 of which I kept for myself, whammy!

But now I can barely move. My body is stiff and painful and sore and I wanna curl up and die. I’m strongly considering spending those hard-earned 200 dirhams on a full-body massage.

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Traveling circus

August 20, 2010

Today I smelled the worst smell known to mankind. But before I go into detail, I’m going to pull a Tarantino and jump to the beginning of the story.

Dubai Airport. International flight. It’s a universal rule that you check-in 2 hours before departure. When do we roll up? One hour before departure. And it’s a full flight. And Ma still has the audacity to ask if she can change her seats to aisle seats. Like, that’s partly the reason they make you come early, isn’t it? So you can do shit like change your seating arrangement, for example. Anyway, the little Asian guy (whose sexual orientation I questioned) firmly but politely told Ma to take her boarding pass and leave. The flight was full. There’s nothing he can do. ESPECIALLY when we’re the last of a plane full of 300 passengers to check-in.

We start going through security. New rule at Dubai airport, by the way: Laptops? Out of the bag, opened, and switched on. Don’t ask me why. Anyway, no issues through security. We walk about five billion miles to the Duty Free, and the psycho maternal accompaniment decides that she urgently needs to buy a toothbrush. Mind you, boarding already started like 15 minutes ago. And we were far from our gate. And a toothbrush isn’t going to save you in the event of a plane crash. It’s not that important that you can’t buy it at the next airport. But Ma was persistent. So I just gave up and told her to meet me outside Gate 119.

The little TV screen in front of the gate flashed FINAL BOARDING in red letters. I knew this shit would happen. Yet another reason why they want you to come two hours before. So that if you forget to pack your toothbrush, you have a bit of spare time to shop around for the perfect combination of plastic, bristles, and rubber grips that make your mouth refreshed and happy. But no. They’re about to taxi the plane out of the gate without us on it, and what’s Ma’s number one priority? The toothbrush.

Eventually, she comes moseying on over at her usual slow pace. AND YOU KNOW WHAT SHE DOES?! “Uhm, excuse meeeee… Can you please give me an aisle seat?” I just stared at her. Was this really happening? Everyone’s on the plane, in their seats, with their seatbelts fastened, and this lady is asking for aisle seats. What makes it even worse is that the woman behind the counter obliged by saying “Just a second ma’am, let me check what’s available,” and my mom responds by giving me all her shit and declaring that she’s going to the bathroom.

Fortunately for everyone in this story (except for myself), I couldn’t find any weapons to kill her with because we had already checked in our luggage, and gone through security with our carry ons. So as much as I wanted to, there was nothing I could do but glare and grunt. Eventually we got on the plane and everyone immediately hated us. If we would’ve crash landed on an island, we’d’ve been the first to get killed for food and clothing.

Time passes and we end up in Amsterdam. I’m going to keep this part of our journey brief, because you can visually experience the story via my facebook albums. But in short, it was cold, it rained twice, was sunny and bright as shit in between the rain periods, and there was a pigeon INSIDE the grocery story. Just chilling in the bread section, eating crumbs. Due to the violations of many health codes, Ma and I just bought our shit and left.

Kay, new plane. And right off the bat, I could sense that this would be a horrible flight. I don’t know why, I could just feel it. And of course, I was right. Ma gets the aisle seat (again), I get the middle seat (again), and some old creepy Iranian woman is sitting on my other side. She’s a talker. I’m a killer. But unfortunately, only one of us had the necessary tools for our trade. Creepy talkative Iranian, 1. Ona, 0. She woke me and asked me what I wanted to drink. She made me fill out her customs form for her because she didn’t have her reading glasses. She leaned over and stared at my laptop screen during the entire operational lifespan of it on flight KL 0641. She woke me to say thanks for helping her with the customs form. She made me take out my earbuds to listen to her life story. She asked me to get her vanilla ice cream from the business class section. By the end of the flight, I was fed the fuck up, and Ma and I literally sprinted towards immigration.

We stood in line for three years, did our laser fingerprints and retina scans, got our baggage, went on the AirTrain to the last stop, got out and transferred to the A-train, and sat down and chilled out. But it’s rush hour traffic, so it’s very congested. And at every station, the conductor would remind us that there’s train traffic ahead, and we should sit tight. Eventually however, after having been stationary for half an hour, the conductor told us all to get on the train on the opposite platform.

We rushed on, the doors sealed shut, and that’s when the smell began. It was bad at first, and only became increasingly worse. It was so bad that it was painful. My eyes were burning. I felt like vomiting. What was emitting such a horrid stench?

And then I saw it. Him, rather. Homeless dude. Wearing about four layers of completely filthy clothes, soaked in urine, and splotched with what appeared to be (and smelled like) human feces, this man made me very uncomfortable. I didn’t even feel compassion, I just felt hatred. If you’re going to reek worse than a landfill, and you’re poor and homeless and it’s summer, stay off the fucking trains. Or chill outside somewhere till after rush hour, and then get on and quietly stink in the corner. But this man chose to sit in the middle of a train car for several if not many stops, and we the passengers could do nothing about it but to shield our faces and pray to our gods to remove this demon from our Earth.

Someone must’ve been a good person, because his or her prayer got answered relatively quickly. Homeless guy looks up, sees the upcoming stop, grabs his garbage bags (literally, two large black Hefty trash bags full of who knows what), and moves towards the door. All this commotion of moving about caused the air to shift and stir, and the smell increased. It was bad. This time, everyone covered their faces and dove out of the way. When he finally left, the world went back to normal.

Anyway, the purpose of this post is in no way meant to make you feel sorry for the homeless guy, but it’s meant to make you feel sorry for me. So I hope it’s working. More updates tomorrow, I’m too jet-lagged to even upload my pictures right now. I didn’t even proof read this.

Worst driver ever.

July 23, 2010

Disclaimer: Ten doesn’t actually drive yet, so the title of this post is based solely on my dream-events, and in no way ridicules her driving in real life. Because as of now, there are no skills to make fun of. Ten, don’t take offense.

I was minding my own business in the garden, watering the plants and enjoying the hot summer breeze, when my mom’s car suddenly slammed through the wall. And who was behind the wheel, jamming along to some music? Yeah. Of course. Ten.

“Dude! Are you fucking crazy?! 1.) What are you doing with Ma’s car? 2.) Why did you slam through the wall? and 3.) WHY DOESN’T THIS BOTHER YOU?!”

“Hey, hey, hey. Calm down, okay? It’s just a car. Just a material possession. It’s nothing to lose sleep over.”

“Okay well I get that, I guess, but can you at least park properly and find a way to fix the wall so we don’t get a gang of hoodlums in here tonight?”

“Yeah I suppose I could do that.”

So she drove the rest of the car through the hole in the wall, and parked it on the open paved area next to the garden. Just as soon as she turned off the engine, my mom pulled up in front of the house. She glanced at the gaping hole, shook her head, and continued her phone conversation in the comfort of the air conditioned car. When she hung up, she grabbed her handbag, switched off the engine, and left the car.

“Are you people crazy? Who did this to the wall? Now we will get Black Paw attacking us in the night!”

Ten gave her whole materialism speech, acting completely nonchalant the entire time. When she finished, she went inside to get something, and my mom just sighed and followed her into the house. Meanwhile, I was awestruck.

Soon, they both exited the house again, and my mom told me she was going to the carwash with her two-week-old Porsche Cayenne S. She asked if I could stay home and wash the Ford, the one that just crashed through the wall. I agreed and watched her walk to her expensive new vehicle through the gap in the wall.

“MA! WAIT! CAN I COME?! I WANNA GO THROUGH THE CARWASH IN THIS CAR, OKAY?! I’M COMING WITH YOU, JUST WAIT!” screamed Ten and she hurriedly put on her shoes. Then, she grabbed the keys off the lawn, jumped in the Ford, and before I had time to react, she threw the car in reverse and squealed out of the driveway. My mom was surprised (in a bad way) and started freaking out at Ten to stop driving. But Ten continued reversing a lot faster than necessary out of the driveway. At the bottom, she hooked the steering wheel to the left, and reversed a bit down the street. Then she got out of the car, triumphant at her victory.

I saw it happen before it happened, but there was nothing I could do. Ten had put the gear in D instead of P. As she and my mom were busy yelling at each other, the Ford slowly inched its way down the road. About ten meters from our house, the road has a dip in it, and upon reaching this slope, the car sped up from about 10 kph to 30 kph and then SLAM! The Cayenne got smashed and I woke up.

One Decade Later

July 6, 2010

Ten years from now, I’m going to be in my early thirties. That’s depressing. What do I hope my life will be like?

Well first of all, let’s talk about my personal hopes. I hope I don’t look old. Yet somehow, with all the smoking and sun exposure, it’s very likely I’ll look like keeper of the crypt. I hope my hair is still full and luscious, my skin still taught and vibrant, and my teeth still in tact. I also hope I maintain a normal weight. Basically, I hope to look like Katie Holmes, in the sense that she’s fit, she looks healthy, and if you had to guess her age, you’d be like “Ehhh, late twenties, early thirties?” which is exactly what I’m going for. Minus the whole being married to a Scientologist dwarf thing.

Next up are my professional hopes. Hopefully in ten years from now I’ll either have my own marketing firm, or I’ll at least be at the top of an already existing one. I want to have a big office on the 20th floor or higher, with two walls entirely made out of glass and displaying a gorgeous view of the metropolitan city below. I hope to be a reputable individual, who’s good at what she does, and I want to enjoy my career. I hope to be able to travel a lot (for business consultancies and whatnot), and I hope to grow, even if I’m already at the top. I mean, the last thing I’d want is to have a stagnant, dead-end job that I hate. So hopefully that doesn’t happen.

As far as families are concerned, I know it’s the norm to hope for a happy marriage with a handsome husband and beautiful children, but do I really want that? Let’s wait a while and see what happens, I’m not going to write anything on paper. Babies. *shudder*

I hope my sister is the successful doctor that she always wanted to be and develops the cure for cancer. I hope my mom is retired by then and living in an institute for crazy old people. Just kidding! But I do hope she’s retired and just goes on a trip around the world or something. I hope Amadeus is two meters long and breathes fire (although it’s quite difficult to train an iguana). I hope they invent a way to make long-distance traveling easier and/or faster because I’m sick of the airline industry. I hope all drugs are legalised. I hope every day the sky is filled with rainbows. I hope all cashiers are glittering unicorns who poop the correct change directly into your wallet. I hope… ah wait. I’m getting out of hand.

So basically, if I land that perfect job in a few years and I quit smoking, this ten year plan seems pretty feasible. Mainly because it’s superficial and vain, but hey, I’m just answering the question.


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