Quick update on the last two months: I went to the West coast of Australia for 10 days with Katy, spectacular scenery and thousands of kilometres of quiet highways. After that I spent two weeks running up the East coast partying on Fraser Island and the Whitsundays, all jolly good fun. Then it was 3 nights in Singapore where I booked a flight to Indonesia on a whim.
My two weeks in Indonesia were mental but a great experience, climbing up volcanoes and becoming a celebrity, playing football with some kids in a cliched comic relief styley even pulling my shirt over my head after my hat-trick and high fiving the players from both teams. Surreal.
Then I went to Borneo for a week and saw lots of cool animals including the Orang-utans and via Kuala Lumpur I got to the Perhentian islands where I had my bag nicked. I'll fill in some details of those other places soon but for now we'll fast forward to the Perhentian islands.
Inside my bag were my passport, my camera and worst of all my journals. I had also started writing a play called 'Why can't real life be more like Championship Manager' I suspect the theft was God's way of telling me the play was a terrible idea and he was saving me the hassle of finishing it.
Let's start with the policeman, because he was funny. Painfully frustrating, but funny. I needed a police report so that I could get a new passport and make an insurance claim so I got a water taxi around the island to the Fishing Village where the surprisingly well built police station is.
My water taxi man (Rico) was very helpful and when there was no-one at the station he found the copper for me, sat in a nearby cafe. The policeman wore a dirty brown polo shirt, glasses round a string on his neck and he had teeth that could sell a thousand toothbrushes - by scaring kids. The few teeth still attached to his gums were frightening and one in the middle seemed to be pointing at me wherever I was in the room. Thankfully he was friendly and with his limited English got me to fill in the blanks on the police report. I bottled claiming for a laptop, ipod and money, I think it was the all seeing tooth that made me feel guilty.
The policeman promised he would send my report to be processed on the mainland and bring me a copy the next day.
The next day came and went, then the day after that did the same. On Monday I got another water taxi to the village with Rico and found the police station locked and empty. Rico phoned some of the numbers on the door and told me someone would bring me the report at 1pm.
Back on the island I felt my first twinges of annoyance, I had planned to leave 3 days earlier but hadn't minded being stuck in paradise. Now I was ready to move on and wondered how long a new passport was going to take if a photocopy took 3 days.
At 1pm I was told I would get the report at 2.30 and at 2.30 I was told I had to go back to the station.
I've always believed that the friendlier you are the better the service you'll get but when the station was locked again my smile buggered off and went snorkeling. Luckily we bumped in to the policeman walking past and he showed me in to the station. Inside things went from frustrating to so unbearable my smile came back to have a laugh at my predicament.
Mr Policeman had apparently never seen me before, I suspect he had Alzheimer's because his ability to forget instantly what either of us had said was amazing.
After some awkward conversation I got over that I had made a report and he went to his reports folder to find mine.
'What's your name?' he asked
Some slow reading through the reports 'Ah here it is'
'No, that's not me that's a Swiss man called Eric'
'And you Swiss'
'No, English, from England, U.K.'
'Ah here it is'
'No this is a girl called Emily'
He pointed at the report 'England'
'Yes I see that but it's not my report, I'm not called Emily'
He read through some of Emily's report then went back to Eric's
'What's your name?'
'Write it down please'
The folder only had 6 reports in it and I'd already seen that mine wasn't one of them. Deputy Dawg checked through the folder again and offered me the Swiss man's again. I wished I was the Swiss man.
'Where you stay?'
'Tropicana, where you said you'd bring the report on Saturday. Tropicana'
His face looked puzzled then lit up
'Oh yes Tropicana' He whacked his forehead with his palm 'Oh no, sorry I forget'
Finally we're getting somewhere
He went back and looked through the same folder
Okay, maybe not
Looking confused again he looked up and said 'And you stay in Bubu?'
I chose to laugh instead of cry 'Oh christ. No Tropicana'
I could go on.
The whole farce took about an hour. He eventually phoned the mainland who found their copy and faxed it through in a few minutes.
'See you soon' he said as I left
'I bloody well hope not'
- ► 2012 (45)
- ▼ June (6)