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The Malaysian Phenomenon: “On The Way” But Still Far Off

The Malaysian Phenomenon: “On The Way” But Still Far Off

Saying “on the way” might be a way to express the intention of leaving soon, even if they haven’t left yet.

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Have you ever experienced the confusion of a Malaysian friend telling you they’re “on the way” when they’re still far off?

If so, you’re not alone! Welcome to the quirky world of Malaysian timekeeping, where “on the way” takes on a new meaning.

In Malaysia, time seems to have a mind of its own.

Deadlines and appointments are more like gentle suggestions rather than strict commitments.

So, when a Malaysian tells you they’re “on the way,” it’s best to take it with a pinch of humour and a generous dose of patience.

The relaxed attitude Malaysians have towards time

Picture this: You’re waiting for your friend at a local mamak stall, eagerly anticipating a piping hot plate of nasi lemak.

You send them a quick message asking for an ETA, and they casually reply, “On the way!”

You settle into your seat, sipping your teh tarik, only to realize that “on the way” could mean anything from five minutes to half an hour or more.

But fear not! This Malaysian phenomenon is not a deliberate attempt to keep you waiting.

It’s a cultural quirk reflecting Malaysians’ relaxed attitude towards time.

Deadlines are often seen as mere suggestions rather than strict obligations.

It’s all about going with the flow and embracing the unexpected twists and turns that life throws you.

One possible explanation for this unique behaviour is the diverse linguistic landscape of Malaysia.

Malaysians effortlessly switch between different languages and dialects in their daily conversations.

So, when they say they’re “on the way,” it might be a playful blend of evolved languages.

Taking a break from the fast-paced world

In the grand scheme of things, this lighthearted approach to timekeeping adds a touch of charm to the Malaysian lifestyle.

It reminds us to slow down, enjoy the journey, and not take everything too seriously.

After all, life is full of surprises, and sometimes being fashionably late can lead to unexpected adventures and memorable experiences.

So, the next time a Malaysian friend tells you they’re “on the way” or “just around the corner”, but you think they’re still far off, it’s better to ask where they are.

Remember, in Malaysia, time is measured not in minutes and seconds but in laughter, camaraderie, and shared moments.

So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the delightful chaos of being “on the way” in this wonderfully unique corner of the world we call Malaysia!


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