I was waiting for cab at Glenmarie, by the roadside this morning for almost half an hour. My ‘Cinoni’ was sent for tyre change and today I have to take public transport. Previously, whenever I had to send Cinoni for service, I’d get one my team mates to pick me up at the service center. Now that they no longer work here, I had to either call for a cab or wait by the roadside.
Okay, the last time I had to do this (standing alone clutching a bag by the roadside – not taxi stand or bus stop) was in 1986. I was in standard 6 then, have to take public bus to go to school and there’s no bus stop in my kampong. Road users were much nicer back then. If they happen to be my close relatives or my friends’ parents, they’d stop and offer me a ride.
It’s not that people who drive in Glenmarie area are bad; I think I was not really lucky this morning. There were many cabs passing by, but they already have passengers. Some were not occupied, but they’re on the fast lane, and since Glenmarie roads are busy in the morning, it’s not possible for the drivers to swerve to the left. Nak mampus kena langgar dengan lori?
Dahlah tak dapat cab, the motorcyclist and lorry drivers keep on honking me and sengih-sengih macam kerang busuk. I checked my blouse, skirt and scarf many times. Who knows, maybe they’re honking me because I’ve worn my blouse ‘Pak Uda’ style (to the uninitiated, Pak Uda is Zami ismail in Pi Mai Pi Mai Tang Tu tv Sitcom. His shirt is always buttoned ‘senget’ly.) But when I think again, maybe they’re warning me not to stand too close to the road because it’s dangerous. Memang dangerous pun, but if I stand too far, I wouldn’t see the cab coming.
After standing there for 20 minutes, I started getting feet cramps. I was baking cookies yesterday and had to stand in the kitchen for quite long. Maybe my feet expected to get some rest today, but had to stand firmly by the roadside, pulak. That was when I started feeling rather desperate. Suddenly I remembered a few comic strips from magazines in the late 70s.
I used to read the magazines over and over again at my late grandmother’s place, so the image sticks in my head until now. There were two friends waiting for taxi, but none would stop and pick them up. So, friend No. 1 asked friend No. 2 to lift her skirt to expose her legs so that it would attract the attention of the taxi drivers. Friend No. 2 did what she’s told to but all drivers started speeding their vehicle once they saw her. As you might have guessed, it was not a beautiful sight, lah that has scared all the taxi drivers away. I was smiling to myself visualizing the comic strip. Friend No. 2’s leg was really hairy; it’s difficult for me to describe it here. He he he he.
That’s not the only that keep on sticking in my head all these years. There’s a jingle I first heard in 1982 that follows me wherever I go, especially to the mall. If you are from the same generation as me, you might recognize this:
Yang mana satu, idaman kalbu,
Tak mau yang ini, bukan yang itu,
Nissan March baru, model seribu,
Satu liter, berbatu-batu.
The Nissan March commercial starred the then-so-sexy Noreen Noor with oh-so-eighties hairstyle. I found the jingles funny because of mix usage of ‘liter’ and ‘batu (mile)’. Malaysia has just standardized to use the metric system for trading in 1981. I think maybe some people were still quite confused with the usage in 1982, hence the mixed jingle lyrics. But until today, I still wonder what is model seribu?
Well, the jingle started haunting me again because I saw this new Nissan March last week. What is this? Model tiga ribu? Quite cute, huh? Hehehehehe…
For the sake of finishing my story, well, I finally managed to hail a cab after 25 minutes standing by the roadside. Luckily, he only charged me RM5.