Sunday, March 05, 2006

Where to Mr. President?

Since I left school days, I’ve been a sports brand promoter, a clerk at a law journal company, another clerical position at an engineering firm before I landed a job which encompassed every jobs I did and more except the brand promoter, of course.

Never in my life that I thought I would land another job which required me to be road savvy, on the move and know where the best Middle Eastern food haven. I am going to be a driver and a guide. One of the small ambassadors of Malaysia zooming in many streets of Kuala Lumpur but, without the red and white car adorned with red hibiscus abstractly painted on the sides. I'm just driving my own grey Proton Wira Aeroback. I am a driver and driving not just for any ordinary people. I am driving for a special person, A man with great influence. I am driving for a president!

Yep! I am now officially hired as a driver cum guide for a president from a country far far away - A country on the other side of the globe, from one of the continents in the world. From US of A. Yes! He is a president, though he’s not the president of a country, a president nonetheless. He is a president of a multi-national furniture trade company, which is based in Houston. And he is an Iranian.

The job was from a friend in Houston - a very good friend. From an ex-housemate, before she got married and moved to US with his husband. Who, already got her green card and now heavily pregnant with first baby who is going to be an American as well since he (yes! It’s a boy!) will be born there. Who will get a cute foot prints, on his birth certificate. All you Americans! Lalalala

Anyway, this friend called and asked if I could help her president who need to come to KL for the MIFF exhibition. This was going to be his maiden visit to KL and need somebody to show him around. The only person she could think of was, me. Of course I would get my share of sparkling blue or purple Agongs for my trouble. Now, How could I reject this favour?

Definitely, I have to be prepared and first impression is very important, right? My first duty was to fetch him from the airport. So, with a placard with his name on it, I marched to the departure hall and wait among the hotel, car rentals, “ulat teksi” and even MIFF representatives. I waved my hand-written placard enthusiastly every time hordes of tourists passed the glass door. I wouldn’t want to be outdone by those aneroxic girls in short-skirts of course!

I switched hands when tired. Its been an hour and still I didn’t see Mr. President (oh I don’t really know how he looked like. I was told he was in his fifties). At this time, I was wondering whether Mr. President got lost while finding his way out.

Suddenly, an Arab man tapped me on the shoulder. He smiled widely. Telling me he was the person I was looking for. He was the Mr. President. I looked skeptically at the man. He was not even fifty. I mentioned his name again. “Yes!” he said. “I am he!”

He ushered me (yep! It’s the other way around for us) to his friend who was waiting with a trolley laden with big bags. This person looked like he was in his fifties. Now, my friend didn’t mentioned two guys. She said it was only one man. The Mr. President. I started to wonder why my friend failed to mention a “companion” to Mr. President.

I told the Arabs to wait at the gate and I will bring my car there. While driving to the arrival area outside the main building, I received a call from Mr. President asking me where I am. I told him I’m already on my way to the arrival area. I parked my car illegally and waved at the two Arabs whom I thought would be my guests for the next five days.

While the two Arabs were busy putting their big bags into my car, I received another call from my handphone and this time it was from a Malay chap telling me that my guest is still waiting at the arrival hall. I was confused. I told him my guests are with me. Then I spoke to the original Mr. President. La! There was a mixed-up! These two Arabs thought I was the person who supposed to pick them up at the airport.

Bodoh betul! I asked their names again. They nodded. I asked their surnames, they looked confused. I asked them whether they are from America. They echoed my question. La! Can’t they read the sign? It was clearly written there, “Mr. President”. At this time I really wanted to knock their heads… and mine too! So much for first impression!

They scrambled out of the car, took their bags and looked lost. Who cares! My Mr. President is already here. I waved at him. Apologised to him profusely. He said ok. Put his bag into the boot and shot off to city centre. Whatever happened to the Arab guys, I wished them luck!

After I sent my Mr. President to the hotel, checked in. Bought him his prepaid card, topped up. Bought another handphone and showed him the way to PWTC, I went back home.

On the way home I couldn’t stop thinking the fate of the two Arabs… and laughing. Bodoh betul! Mak ai! Penatnya!

Apapun, I still bersyukur coz I still have my sanity and can laugh at my own mistakes. Honest mistake la, sapa suruh mamat arab masuk keta aku!

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