A new colleague supposed to join us before the Chinese New Year but somehow, he didn’t turn up. At first, we thought he had cold feet. Later, we found out, he was actually stuck in the flood in Segamat, Johor after he went on a jungle expedition with his friends.
Water just rose everywhere and in no time, they were cut off from the town itself. They had no choice but to abandon their jeep and waded their way through the waters to the higher ground. They ended staying in a school together with other families whose houses were already buried deep in the waters.
Good Samaritans especially from the restaurants near by, cooked for the entire school for free. Since there was lack of clean water, whenever he saw bottles of mineral water, even if there’s only a mouthful left in it, he would scoop it up and drink from it! They were that desperate.
There is a millionaire among them, who was also stranded in the school. The rich man was fussy and refused to eat whatever that was being offered and kept saying that, he has money – he deserve better treatment and food. What did he want? Dim sum? For Christ’s sake! Nobody bothered about him. We weren’t sure if he did eat in the end, since they were stuck there for about 3 days. Money can’t buy everything.
It was an eye opener experience for this colleague. He said, at the time of utter despair and destitute, everybody looked beyond skin color, race, creed and status to work together to pull through the calamity. We can safely say, sometimes, calamity could be blessing in disguise. The experience has taught this colleague not to take things for granted, be thankful for things that he has, stop squabbling over petty things and made him believe in kindness and goodness in people, regardless skin color, race, creed, religion or culture. He felt really thankful for people who have helped him and his friends to pull through this.