I think this is the only trip that one could never really plan on their own, unless they are 'invited'.
Our trip started on Wednesday evening March 31st, we left home after Asar, around 5pm. The meeting point is at Al-Saad stadium. Mr.Zahed was kind enough to offer his big Armada to send us off, alhamdulillah. So, there we are, nervous and excited to see the BUS that we gonna make as our bed-on-wheel throughout our journey for umrah.
Sampai-sampai je Al-Bayyan compound, we saw 3 of the buses lining up- gorgeous good looking brown metallic buses! New and Super cool, complete with a nice toilet (like the one in airplane) Alhamdulillah.
After maghrib, more and more people start to come, we loaded our bags into the bus and started choosing our seats, when we discover it's a full reclinable seat, sweeeeet! So there goes our worry . With a nice bus like this what could possibly be wrong? ;) The best relief is knowing that we can scrap off 'ke-taklalu-an untuk gune tandas awam' throughout the journey (which by experience from other people are super terrible!)
Some friends are kind enough to come and see our departure. So while waiting for the rest of the passengers, we hop on and off the bus (more like Myra yang forcing the hop-on-and-off) to meet them. At around 8, as planned we made our move. There are 4 buses all together, our bus was No 1, with the organizer Haji Mansor as a head. So, we lead the way to the Qatar-Saudi border.
We arrived Qatar border 1 1/2 hours later, with quite a smooth ride..
At around 10:30pm begins our best ujian, the Saudi border. First, Haji Mansor asked all of us to stay while he gets the immigration chop. Then the men were asked to go for fingers scan and picture taking. Then, the ladies turn. It seems quite a smooth deal, until one of the lady got stuck with her finger print; 5 times of failure and we started to panic. Tapi dengan izin Allah (rupe-rupenye almost all of us pray for her success serentak) 2 minutes after, she came out with a happy result, Alhamdulillah.
The next step was to go for baggage scan. We were asked to take all our belongings down and clear up the bus. Nothing should be left inside, not even a botol susu! It was already 1 AM i think.. so we were not in our best energy-level, plus the cranky Myra..cooobaaannn. The Saudi do a thorough check of the bus, using their special-trained dog. Then, the ladies were asked to enter a room for some handbag inspection and name filling. The immigration officer was a nice lady, all she had to do was to write down our name and check our handbag (if any). Once all done, we are back on track. Finally proceeding with our journey to the first destination; Madinah al-Munawarrah.
25hours later (yes.. campur tolak break), we arrived Madinah during Maghrib. I considered myself very lucky that I manage to get the room key and get ready in time for Ishak prayer (Further more, memang bersyukur that my period elok2 je abis time sampai Madinah!!). Ibu asked us to went ahead without her, as she still a bit too tired to rush to Masjid Nabawi. The magnificient Masjid was only 100 meters away, with the ladies entrance right across our hotel. It was my first best experience ever... seeing so many other sisters eager to perform jemaah prayer.
The spiritual experience is just unimaginable and beyond words. I couldn't really know how to express it here. I guess one can only know by own experience.
It was true what people say about the holy place, any wish.. any niyah will be granted almost instantly... so careful for what you wish for!
Among one of the magical thing that I experienced was when we lost Myra's crocs. We kept all our (cikai-slipper-that-intended-to-be-use-for-masjid-takut-kasut-mahal-hilang) along with her crocs, and yes.. like we expected, the slipper hilang.. tapi yang sedihnye so is Myra's crocs. The next day, my little heart was wishing that 'harap2 ade la crocs myra..' then I tried eyeing the shoe rack....then there it was.. myra's crocs with our emptied slipper bag; elok je ade! wah.. instant reward, alhamdulillah.
Banyak sangat cerita-cerita magik jadi, but i think this is enuff for now.. ;)
To be continue..