SATURDAY, the rain had not stopped. It's been raining cats and dogs these past days. I looked at the clock, it's still early to get there. the VIP card printed the time for admission was 4pm. Probably the show would start at 5pm by normal procedure. I reminded my husband not to be late as we had to drive all the way to the Shangri-La's Rasa Ria Resort & Spa to watch GARY CHAW's live stage show. Missing a single part of it was something regrettable to a fan like me.
We drove in Tuaran town by 3.30pm and still managed to enjoy a quick plate of the famous Tuaran Mee (noodles) in a coffee shop. At one time, the rain was so heavy that we suspected the show might be called off. However, we drove on with rain splashing hard and rude on the car screen that caused a blurry vision ahead of us. We almost missed a junction that was leading to the hotel and I got to look out carefully for the road signs lest one misscue would mean time loss and so on.
Years ago, we used to take our kids to Rasa Ria Resort for a swim besides a few times too many to spend a get-away trip when our mother-in-law was still around or when my daughter wanted a birthday night sleepover, we would jump at the idea without hesitation. So, the hotel is no strange to us except there have been vast changes over the years, either it's the people or it's the hotel and we haven't traveled down here for at least couple so years.
When my daughter told me that Gary came back from Taiwan and would perform a live show for his very homeground fans and friends, I was elated. To me, he is not only a guy who was born here but someone who is so talented in music and songwriting. He has gained huge success and fame in China as well.
We saw the crowd gathered at the sea front of the hotel with umbrellas shielding from the drizzles. The VIP cards didn't promise anyone a proper seat. Mind you, the whole show was an open air event. VIP cards meant one could stand behind the VVIP seats separated by makeshift metal fences. No one could say a thing as all was free. Gary didnt charge a fee for his show. So standing in the drizzles watching him sing was okay.
As I was squeezing in the crowd (mostly young adults, boys and girls) trying to grab a glimpse of my idol, Gary appeared in a set of beach casual and greeted the fans excitedly and warmly, loudly. I knew I was standing beside a young girl of about 20s, if I was not mistaken, she is the daughter of our old friend's brother, also a cousin of my daughter's friend. We exchanged smiles and pulled our necks long to capture the ongoing show on stage.
Gary came down from the stage. He was entertaining the huge crazy crowd (but I guessed he was more crazy than anyone of us) and as he was singing and screaming and striding towards the audience by the side, my husband urged me to stick closer so he could have a snapshot of Gary with my face but I wasn't aware of the few bodyguards on both sides of the singer. I was being pushed and blocked swiftly while Gary went by. The strong arms of the bodyguards reminded me of some wrestle mania who have extraordinary big arms with tattoos. Phew!
After the show, we had dinner outside and drove home tired. One hour later, my daughter showed me her cell phone that had a picture of me waving a hand high up in the crowd. "Is that you, mom?" she seemed harmlessly sarcastic.
"Oh my god!" immediately, I sensed who the intruder was. That young girl standing beside me. What was she up to ? Why did she do this to a woman her mother's age and sent that picture to her cousin knowing that her cousin is a close friend of my daughter ? And I was so focused on watching Gary's performance that I was not paying attention to people around me. I thought everyone here had only one thing in common, that's, to see Gary's performance.
I told my daughter " these days, one never knows when the paparazzi spot you and have your picture circulated faster than you think. You see, I just showed myself in public not too long ago, and my picture is up and running in a matter of two hours. The worst part is that I ain't no public figure."
Together we laughed till tears rolled down our legs.