On 12 and 13 December 2017, I was having exams for the 4th year of my MBBS course at NUMed. Coincidentally, during that time there was a power outage affecting Horizon Residences, the NUMed accommodation. Here, I am writing about the whole incident.
The exams were from 2PM to 5PM on both days. On the first day, I went to NUMed at about 10:30AM. When I left Horizon Residences, the power supply was still on. During my journey to NUMed, I noticed that the traffic lights in Bukit Indah were not functioning. Later, NUMed sent an e-mail which stated that there was a power outage in Bukit Indah including Horizon Residences and they had informed TNB about that. NUMed was not affected by the power outage since it is located in Nusajaya.
At that time, I somehow had the feeling that the power outage might be a major one that would take a long time to repair. Immediately after my exam on that day, I received another e-mail from NUMed which informed us that it was a severe power outage and that the power supply was expected to be restored by midnight. I began to feel worried because I still had to revise for the exam on the next day and the power outage would adversely affect my revision.
I decided to go for dinner at McDonald's in Bukit Indah. However, as the traffic lights weren't functioning, an accident happened at the main crossroad in Bukit Indah, resulting in a very bad traffic congestion. The police diverted the traffic at that crossroad, and as a result I was forced to enter an expressway. Upon entering the expressway, I had two choices, either to go back to NUMed, or to go to Taman Perling. I chose the latter.
On my way to Taman Perling, I was stuck in traffic jam at the Perling toll for about 20 minutes. Taman Perling wasn't affected by the power outage. I was rather unfamiliar with the area in Taman Perling as I had never driven there before. However, I had passed through that area many times previously during my journey to and from Hospital Sultan Ismail, and I knew there was a KFC there. After some tries, I was able to get to the KFC. Since it was raining, I bought my dinner by drive-thru. Initially, I thought of parking there and having my dinner in my car.
However, I was very stressed at that time because of my exams and the power outage. This, in addition to the fact that the place was unfamiliar for me, I felt very uncomfortable being in that place. I wanted to leave that place as soon as possible, so I decided to bring my dinner back to Horizon Residences. On my way back, I was once again stuck in the traffic jam at the Bukit Indah crossroad. It was 7PM when I arrived at Horizon Residences.
The lights in the car park and corridor of Horizon Residences were working at that time. This gave me the false impression that the power supply had been restored. However, it turned out that those lights were powered by generator and there was still no power supply in my unit. After having KFC for dinner, the sky had turned dark. Looking from the window, I could see that some areas of Bukit Indah were bright, while the areas surrounding Horizon Residences were still dark. I thought that the power supply was being restored in stages.
I decided to sleep for a while first, as I usually do after class every day, hoping that the power supply would have been restored by the time I woke up. However, I was unable to fall asleep. With the fan and air-conditioner off, my room was almost completely quiet and I just couldn't stand the quietness. After about 45 minutes, I got up from bed and I telephoned TNB to ask about the power outage. TNB told me that the power outage was still being repaired and they had no idea when the power supply could be restored.
According to TNB, some areas of Bukit Indah were receiving backup power and Horizon Residences would get the same later, and after the power outage had been repaired, the power supply would once again be cut off for some time to switch back to the main power. At that point, I felt that there was no point to keep waiting for the power supply to be restored. My iPad's battery was running low and I couldn't charge it, but I had to use my iPad to do revision for my exam.
I decided to go to the NUMed library and spend a night there, for the first time. About one year ago, NUMed planned to limit the operation hours of the library so that it would be closed from 12AM to 7AM every day. Many students opposed this, and I joined them in opposing it even though I had never used the library after midnight. Eventually, NUMed scrapped that plan and kept the library open for 24 hours every day. In November 2017, I once thought of spending a night in NUMed after hearing strange sounds in my room, but eventually I didn't need to.
I arrived NUMed at about 8:45PM. I met many of my friends who were also there because of the power outage in Horizon Residences. The power sockets in the library were all on the floor and my iPad's charger cable wasn't long enough for me to comfortably use the iPad when charging. Therefore, I connected my iPad to a computer instead, which allowed me to comfortably use the iPad on the table. The computer couldn't actually charge my iPad (which stated "Not charging"), but it managed to keep the battery level from falling.
For a few hours, I did revision for my exam using my iPad in the library. At around 12AM, many of my friends returned to Horizon Residences as they didn't want to spend their night in NUMed, even though the power supply at Horizon Residences was still not restored. I maintained my decision to spend the night in NUMed. At 1AM, it was time for me to sleep. Initially, I planned to sleep in a sitting position with my head on the table. I had done that many times in the past during the free time between classes, usually for 1 to 2 hours each time.
But at a second thought, I realised that sleeping for the whole night is quite different compared to sleeping for just 1 to 2 hours. I was worried that if I slept like that for the whole night, I might end up getting body aches on the next day, which could affect my performance in the exam. Therefore, I decided to sleep on the sleeping bags in the library instead. The sleeping bags were actually quite comfortable. A few other students were also spending their night in the library.
On the next morning, I woke up at about 8:45AM. I did sleep quite well and I didn't experience body aches. One of my friends was surprised to see that I spent my night in the library. He told me that the power supply at Block A of Horizon Residences was eventually restored at around 2AM, while the power supply at Block B was still not yet restored (my unit is in Block A). TNB then sent me an SMS to inform that the power supply in Bukit Indah was being restored gradually. I had breakfast at the NUMed cafeteria and then continued with my revision for the exam.
After the exam on that day, I wanted to have dinner at Nando's in AEON Bukit Indah, but AEON was completely closed as a result of the power outage. At that time, the power supply in Bukit Indah had largely been restored. Bukit Indah felt so much like a dead town that just got revived. I had dinner at McDonald's and then returned to Horizon Residences. I was so glad that the power supply at my unit had been restored and that I could take a good break since my exams were over.
Overall, my experience of spending a night in the NUMed library had been quite good. In the future, I can consider doing that sometimes. On 9 January 2018, the results of the exam was released and I passed it successfully. On that afternoon, I went to the KFC in Taman Perling for lunch, just to relive the memories of the exam day. This time, without the stress, I felt much more comfortable with that place.