Saturday, September 01, 2007

The Ex-Sybarite

Maybe I'm really not your average person. An average person wouldnt need to be told twice to go for a paid for Eurotrip. An average person wouldn't agonise for weeks whether or not to go. Sure. I know it will be tonnes of fun; what's with the backpacking and partying and the walking along cobbled pavements and scenic places. I know.



And I also know that if I were to go, I would spend thousands of ringgits for what could have been used to pay for

- My brother's tuition fees for TWO years
- My sister's living expenses for at least SIX months
- Minyak kereta. Can isi at least 40 times you know.
- Can pay for my Celcom bill for more than THREE years.
- Can pay for dad's antihypertensive medicines for FOUR years.



I think of my parents, who have to work hard for the past 3 decades to provide for our family. I think of the days when they come back from work; tired, sometimes seemingly disillusioned and dissatisfied. I know their struggles in working life, and when I think of that, I just couldnt bring myself to spend thousands on a 10days trip.


Then I think of the poor back home. The ones who are so impoverished that they have to make do with eating just biji getah rebus, the seeds of the oil palm tree. The ones who have to toil under the sun to make ends meet. Or the ones who are so poor that they have to stay in makeshift houses. Or the children who are so happy when they can finally buy their RM20 ciplak jeans.


I know, I'm no philanthropist or anything, but I've seen all these things, and I just couldnt, couldnt bring myself to spend that much money.


I know, you might say, I must be insane not to go, especially when Europe is practically at my doorsteps. Especially when my parents said TWICE, "It's ok. Go la, u need a good break for your final year". I just couldn't. My conscience wouldnt allow it.


Honestly, if u ask me, I dont feel like I deserve it. Too much money has been spent on the first born. I'm not as bright, I'm not as hardworking, I'm not as charming and sometimes I'm not as filial a daughter. Yet I get to see all these places. The more my parents do to keep me happy, the guiltier I feel.


So, there. I'm not going. Bye bye Salzburg. I have finally made up my mind. No point in me going if I were to spend the days there riddled with guilt. And you know what, I feel so much happier now that I'm not going. Almost feels like I've been absolved of something.


I dont expect you to understand. Try being in my shoes. Brilliant sister on scholarship for med school in Jogja. Me, an average, here in UK, and being spent lots on. College in Australia, private med school in KL. Then there's the aging parents factor. Illness might just strike any time, though of course I'm not wishing it on them. Then there's the brother who still has quite a way to go. Ah, the conscience. Never dulled, rather, intensifies as time passes.


Ha. This time 3 years ago, I was most probably broke but still go out to the city everyday for a sushi or bubble tea fix. Talk about being decadent. 3 years ago, it didnt bother me much, the fact that I only had AUD2 left in my bank account. That was how irresponsible I was with money. Nyahaha. Amazing how much I've changed in a few years.

4 comments:

MicHieBuN said...

if u ask me whether u shud for a euro trip...i'll be like "DAPHNIE!..GO LA!...SHESSH...U'RE SO NEAR THERE...I CAN;T EVEN GO EVEN IF I WANTED 2!" *rolls eyes*...
heehhe...but aft i read ur whole post...then i understand la..SORT OF...hehehe....
u din change...u just became an adult ;P

MicHieBuN said...

*i meant whether u shud GO for a euro trip..

Anonymous said...

hi tuyuk! silly. din have to feel so like that.

Daphie said...

Bun: Lemme try ka lu kong hokkien. Wa e chai, tapi wa mai kee. Beh an juak la, wa tatajit kee city be bi kia nia la. (Haha. Can pass? I simply say.)


Anon: Hi su. I know ba. Just being jedun and emo baka biasa. Sik hal la. Aku kan kakak yg baik (cue to have hemoptysis) Kelak aku shopping key kebaikan kita duak bersama. Hoho.