Thursday, January 21, 2010

Lazy, Unorganised and Stupid

Today it rained. It rained all last night, all day today and it is still raining now. At 10am this morning as I watched a movie with Celine I expected the rain to subside: the only rain we had experienced in the 6 months we have lived here had been quick and powerful downpours - usually over within minutes. As the time to leave approached however it appeared today’s treck on the bike would be rain a inclusive affair.

I put on my suit, made myself look pretty and headed for the door with around 20 minutes to get to work. I put on my cheap raincoat and wiped the water off the seat of my bike. My bike wouldn’t start. This is not new to me and has been an ongoing issue whenever it is cold. The bike wouldn’t turn over using the starter button. The bike wouldn’t turn over when I tried to start it manually. When my suit pants got caught and ripped I started to get a bit angry. After a few minutes of my anger building up, it had become the kind that turns into a tight ball lodged somewhere between lungs. I was getting late and the, I quote “piece of shit fucking bike” was not going to start anytime soon. Celine came down, attracted by the sound of the vain attempts to get the motor to star and with sympathy watched my tantrum unfold. Showing compassion, bless her, she offered me her bike meaning she would take a xeom later on (motorbike taxi). But this was my problem and one I should have sorted earlier. I have said countless times I was going to replace my bike but I never have. I had simply wished the problem would disappear. Well it hadn’t and I only had my laziness to blame.

I stormed off to find a xeom to take me to school. I found one quickly and barked where I needed to go. The driver obviously took me for a tourist taking in the sites as he was without a doubt the slowest driver Hanoi has to offer. Numerous attempts to make him go faster were futile as pushbikes seemed to cruise past us. My raincoat is an inexpensive, thin bit of plastic bagsold for around a $1. This raincoat struggles to cover a small Vietnamese body so mine had no chance. The bottom stopped at my knees so my nice suit pants were open to the incoming rain. They got drenched and by the time I was half way to work my pants and the skin on my leg were connected as one. I have known for a while that I needed to buy a better raincoat but sheer lack of organisation thrown in with a touch of laziness put me in today’s situation. It was only when a passing bus (man I hate buses) splashed a puddle all across the left side of the bike sending water all down my leg, into my shoes and throughout my socks that I sat back from the situation and shared a smile with it.

I arrived at work a little late as all the kids were arriving from class. I jumped off the xeom and tried to put on a happy smile for the kids who thought my appearance was nothing short of humorous. It was funny after all and I did look rather stupid but really it was stupid to get angry in the first place. In hindsight it was an interesting afternoon.

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