I have been coming and going in Miri for quite some time now. To be exact, every month I had to leave Miri. In fact I must leave Miri tomorrow!
Miri is a young city in northern part of Sarawak, Malaysia. When somebody asks me about Miri I had nothing else profound in mind but to say it’s an oil town (although I know it’s a city), it is where the oil industry of Malaysia came to birth. Apparently when I say I’m in Malaysia, people most often think of peninsular Malaysia where Kuala Lumpur is; and then this is usually followed by a long explanation which starts with a demonstration of the geographical distribution of the Malaysian territory.
I came to Miri because somebody important drives me here. I took a break from my laboratory research job and came here as a tourist without a visa. Thus, I spent perhaps five months in total unconsecutively, staying here in Miri with a compulsory exit each month. Conveniently, Miri is just an hour or less drive away from a neighboring country – Brunei. Exit was easy, we drove to Brunei, eat at Jollibee and drove back to Miri with another month of permit to stay stamped on my passport. Occasionally, I’d go back to the Philippines, do my business there for a month or two especially during holiday season, or travel to Singapore. But tomorrow, we’ll do the nearest exit run, to Brunei.
Time in Miri seems to run so slow, heck I didn’t even notice I’ve been coming back here for an entire year now. Everything is laid-back – eat out, occasional club night out at CB, dinner at some hotel, crab nights at downtown near Ming’s, mall, and my favorite – watching sunset at the beach. There’s not much to do here in Miri, sometimes I hated going out because I didn’t want to pee at public toilets, even mall toilets. I don’t know, except in hotels, I haven’t been to a decent toilet that smells good with clean, and dry floor. I spent my days in Miri in front of the internet, facebook, online work, hollywood gossip, geeky stuffs and research for academic enrichment. I have not finished a single paper here – my long overdue papers for publication. I don’t know, maybe this is just an excuse for my apparent indolence, or there’s something in Miri that made me lazy. But then again, perhaps there is something not in Miri that would make me otherwise.
Nevertheless, Miri has grown a part in me that I would surely miss when I leave this place.
P.S. I’ve started this blog maybe because being in this place just inspired me to do so. 🙂