If there is one thing I learned well from my dad, is how not to be late for any functions.
My dad will be at least 30 minutes early to any function (big or small). Most of the time he will be 1 hour early which sometimes poses a problem for us because if we are late, we can count on getting scolding from him. He hates coming in late. There is no such thing as “Malaysian Time” or “Indian Time” for him.
His argument is simple (which I agree too) – leave early and you can beat the jam, drive without rushing and get a good parking spot. Further, should there be a need to “switch to Plan B” – such as last minute change of avenue, flat tire or just having road closed due to flash flood, we will have ample time to do alternative arrangements.
In fact for my wedding, we were the first to arrive at the temple before other guests arrived – all due to my dad’s insistence that we be early to check on the preparation and be ready for the guests. So early, that even the priest got a shock to see the wedding “group” showing up at the temple before he was ready.
So, when I was attending a 2 days workshop in KL, I decided that the best option is to leave home early to KL. It has been sometime since I last “ventured” into KL during the rush hours and although the workshop starts at 9.30 am, I did not want to take any risk of being late. Traffic in KL can be very unpredictable at times. All it takes to grind the traffic in KL to a halt is one beat-up lorry to break down at one crucial junction and that’s it. I have gone through it several times when I was working in KL.
I left the house early at 7.00 am and took the fastest (but not necessarily cheapest) route to KL – the NPE (New Pantai Expressway). To my surprise, it was smooth – considering that it was a Monday morning. I guess not many people have the enough cash to pay the RM3.20 toll given the recent fuel price hike. I hit small pockets of traffic here and there but otherwise it was a very smooth journey to KL.
I reached my destination in KL centre at 8.00 am. That was even faster than a short trip from my house to my office which ironically, is nearer. With plenty of time at hand, I did the obvious – go for my nasi lemak & teh tarik whilst leisurely reading my newspaper at a nearby mamak stall. I was also happy because being early also meant that good parking spots were available. It is crucial to get good parking spots in KL – there are too many flash floods occurring these days and the last thing you want is to come back & find your car in a “teh-tarik colored” pool of water. I got one at the 1st floor, right at the entrance & security post – I had less one problem to worry about when I at the workshop.
When the workshop started, not surprisingly there were some late comers. They looked stressed, sweating (which is bad when having a group discussions) and was feeling little bit edgy (as if they were on steroid). It was also bad because they missed the early part of the workshop and had some difficulty understanding the subject at hand (I hated this because they keep asking for another clarification on lessons taught). Although they may have a valid reasons for being late (one guy said he had send his kid to the clinic in the morning – fair enough) but I am sure that leaving home early would have solved some problems.
Personally I know of some friends who often come in late even though they are staying very near. Their comments when asked is often reduced to this: “I am staying very near lah macha, I can leave the house late but I am sure I will be early one”. Often this is too good to be true on many occasions. Often, take a wild guess as to who will be the last to face their faces at the function. (Note: Macha = Indian slang for brother)
Cartoon source: http://www.inkcinct.com.au
So, wake up early and reach the destination early.
Benefits can indeed be rewarding especially if you are driving through the mad KL rush hours.
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