I smiled as the bus pulled over at the entrance of the immigration building. I thought I had my last overland border crossing of my trip during that re-attempt on the Armenia-Iran border. But apparently not.
When I started my trip, I had envisioned that I would naturally return via air. It never crossed my mind that I would be coming back by road, that I would have a stopover in Malaysia. But here I was, retreiving my luggage from the belly of the bus, and heading straight to the automated clearance system.
I smiled as the group in front of me were fumbling with the self-service passport scanning, and complaining among themselves in a language and accent so familiar. I smiled even as my fingerprint scan failed to open the turnstile. This had happened before, and really, what would go wrong on this border crossing? :)
The officer opened the gantry and motioned me forward.
"Sorry sir, just let me do a quick check here."
I smiled and nodded.
I was soon back on the bus, and the bus soon on its way into the drizzling night. I smiled as the letters in corner of my mobile phone screen changed to the Starhub operator. I looked out of the window, and smiled as I saw a typical road sign but the words 'Mandai Zoo' sprung out strangely into my face. I smiled as rows and rows of tall rectangular flats, neatly and brightly lighted, whizzed by. I smiled as a beautifully lighted and spiral-shaped bridge came into view - I remembered it as Helix Bridge. I smiled at a petal-shaped building, that was not yet completed before, but now looking pretty in the night. I smiled at the beautiful and familiar night skyline, but yet looked a little different.
I smiled when the taxis sped by, ignoring my frantic waving on this drizzling Saturday night in Beach Road. I smiled at my smile, knowing that 448 days ago, I would have been throwing profanities at the taxi drivers instead.
I smiled this day, at the ordinary, at the mundane, at the things I normally would not. And why not?
I am home! :)