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RapidKL: See How First

I am an organised person, and I find myself unconciously managing my own time efficiently. When I was younger, I used to unconsciously draft out a personal schedule in my mind. I have already planned what I will do or what I will eat at what time. In fact, most things are all planned in advance (in fact, a whole week's worth). This way, I find that I can maximise the usage of my time to the fullest. Thus, if anybody suddenly announces something at the very last minute, I often find it difficult to make changes to my plans, since I have everything drafted out beautifully. In fact, I feel uneasy not having any plans in my mind at all!

However, due to a certain "see-how-first", "last-minute-decision" culture in Malaysia, I often find it difficult to survive with my rigid planning. Thus, I have slowly tuned myself to be more flexible and to adapt to different circumstances (you won't catch me saying things like "see how" a few years ago!) I'm beginning to feel that I have lost the effeciency I used to have years ago. All thanks to trying too hard to adapt to my environment.

Anyhow, why am I talking about this so suddenly? Well, it is all because of this "see-how-first" culture my friends are talking about recently. I've started realising how slow I have become in completing my work, and half the time because I have stopped giving myself proper timelines to finish my work, and to do things slowly, one at a time >.< However, that's not the main reason for posting this article. The main reason is: I WASTED 1.5 HOURS OF MY LIFE TODAY WAITING FOR A DAMN F****** STUPID BUS!!!

Okay, here's the story. I took a RapidKL bus (U82) to Bandar Utama bus terminal (which was temporarily relocated to outside a school nearby because the regular terminal was blocked for a New Year countdown event) and arrived a little after 10:30am. I was planning to take a bus (U43) to Putrajaya from there. Seeing no signs of any U43 buses, I approached to supervisor to inquire. It appears that the bus has just left at 10:30am, and I have to (supposedly) wait for 30 minutes.

For those who don't know how RapidKL works, the supervisor will only decide on the departure time of a bus AFTER it arrives at the station. This is why you are not allowed to board a bus immediately upon its arrival at a (final) bus terminal: the drivers are required to report to the supervisor in charge, the supervisor decides on the departure time, and then well the drivers will just take a break until the stipulated time. So there. This means that there are no fixed timetables for the buses; they only provide a frequency table as a guide. According to RapidKL's website and the brochures at the terminals, "kaji selidik sedang dijalankan and apabila kajian kami selesai, sebuah Jadual Waktu Bas akan dimaklumkan kepada anda pada bulan Jun 07" (we are conducting a study; upon completion of study, we will provide you with a bus timetable in June 2007). So, "see how first" >.< (and you guys do realise that it's already 2008?)

Anyway, the bus frequency for U43 is (at best effort) 30 minutes. And it depends on when the bus arrives from Putrajaya (a.k.a. "see how first"). Fortunately, the bus arrived at about 10:45am. The supervisor fixed the departure time to be at 11:10am. Okay, 40 minutes wait. Fine. After a while, the bus driver started the bus and made a U-turn to get to the other side of the road (this was around 10:50am), and the bus was not parked directly with the other buses yet. I assume that the driver will drive to his spot at the stipulated time. Since the supervisor said 11:10am, I stayed put at the sheltered side as I did not want to cross over to the other side to wait under the hot scorching sun.

Of course I wasn't staring at the bus all the time. I suddenly realised that one bus was driving past other buses, slowing down a little to check for passengers. It suddenly dawned upon me that it was my U43! I rushed across the road to catch it. Suffice to say, I missed the bus (ToT). And it appeared that the supervisor did not even realise that the bus has left (he was saying something like next bus is at 11:10am until I told him that the bus has left >.<). According to my watch, it was only 11:06am. Man, these people really need to synchronise their watches >.<!!

"So when is the next bus?" I asked.
"Have to wait another 30 minutes-lah!" was the reply.

Yeah, 30 minutes. Best effort. Still have to "see how first". If only I had some materials to read I could have used the time wisely. But hell no. I only had groceries in my bag >.< So had to whip out my phone to play a (Java) game of darts >.< And the bright sunlight glaring at the screen definitely did not help >.<;

I also managed to take a peek at the supervisor's schedule report. The buses that day departed at (from what I remember) 6:00am, 6:30am, 7:00am, 7:30am, 8:25am, 9:00am, 10:00am, 10:30am, 11:10am. 30 minutes? No way... >.<

The bus finally arrived at 11:45am, way past the "30 minutes". And staying true to their "see how first" spirit, the bus will leave at 12noon. This time, I caught hold of the driver, and hammered it in his mind that he should never ever forget that I will be boarding his bus and he should never ever "tinggal" (abandon) me or he will feel my wrath >.<!!! (Ok, I'm exaggerating ^^;). So finally managed to board the bus at 12noon. And fortunately, I did not have to wait for my transit bus from Putrajaya to Cyberjaya this time; else my patience will definitely be tested. >.<

1.5 hours wasted just like that! And those stupid ministers are wondering why we do not use public transport?! And they always boast about KL's "efficient transport system" >.< My foot. Hope I wish I could drag them to wait under the hot sun at the mercy of the buses!! >.<!

The moral of the story?
1. You are at the mercy of our "see how first" bus system.
2. Don't assume that the buses will follow your atomic clock. Even their own clocks are not synchronised!
3. Ask the supervisor when the bus will depart. Even better, which bus and which driver!
4. Always stalk the driver of the bus you want to board, and always keep an eye on the bus!

Comments

1 YP said,

Hmmm.. I was also damn mad about RapidKL the other day, as I told you earlier.

May be I will put a comment here about my experience that day and let everyone see, but now I got to sleep first, so SEE HOW FIRST.

Those minister dogs… they are busy making headlines in newspaper….

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