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BY COLUMNISTS

| Joe Charlebois | Guest Columnist | Harry M. Covert | Norman M. Covert | Hayden Duke | Jason Miller | Ken Kellar | Patricia A. Kelly | Edward Lulie III | Tom McLaughlin | Patricia Price | Cindy A. Rose | Richard B. Weldon Jr. | Brooke Winn |

DOCUMENTS


The Tentacle


December 23, 2015

Random Facts, No Fiction

Tom McLaughlin

Kuching, Malaysian Borneo – The monsoon season is here. Rain every night and day with some breaks during the afternoons. We don't leave the flat without an umbrella; and we have to use it most times. I don't mind it especially after that horrible smog we had in September and October.

 

My writing is going well. I am tracking the history of the area, well, been tracking the history for the past three years, trying to combine all the sources into one cohesive essay. It is very difficult to do when the people have no written history.

 

I have just taken a look at art rock. If they couldn't write about it then, they must have made pictures in caves about their lives. The trouble is the pictures make no sense to my eye. It just seems to be a garble of boats, at least I think they are boats, plus other incomprehensible stuff. Like spirals and what not.

 

The Christmas season is here. They have opened another new mall. It has the same stores as all the others. I cannot understand why we have all these shopping centers. We must have at least a dozen and the economy can only support one or two of them. The stores come in, lose money and close. I cannot figure it out.

 

The same with hotels. Several new ones have opened. We have an occupancy rate of 35%. They are beautiful structures but don't make any money. Some say they are money laundering facilities for the super-rich. I can think of better ways to launder money than a billion dollar hotel or shopping center.

 

One thing amusing about Kuching is all the Christmas music and decorations in predominantly Muslim areas. Strange to hear "Here comes Santa Claus" with everyone dressed in head scarves. The trees twinkle with bulbs and beautiful Muslim ladies passes by. Only in Sarawak.

 

I have been watching "Breaking Bad" on my computer and I understand they have a new program called "Call Saul," or something like that. I understand it is a big hit. Somebody could e-mail me and tell me about it. We can't get Netflix here. Sounds interesting.

 

We have two crocodiles living under our building. During one rainy day, I watched one swim down the river and then turn right and headed for our abode. I went down and talked to a few guys on the boats that cross the river, and they said there were two of them. I have named one George. They said the head was about two foot long. I guess they measure the size by the length of the head. The trouble is people and crocs don't mix.

 

The guys also said there was a Boa living around here to. The river water has really been cleaned up since they built the sewer system so I guess the wildlife has also enjoyed the clean water. I haven't seen him (or her) yet. There are many fish swimming in the turbid waters, so I guess they are right.

 

From all of us here in the tropics of Borneo…....Merry Christmas!

 

            …Life is good. . . . .

 



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