Friday, 31 March 2017



Back into uncharted territory and we took the very short flight from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur, (although the airport is actually about a 45 minute drive from the city) and checked in to our room with a view. The traders hotel, a recommendation from friends whose photos we had envied, put us on the 13th floor (the hotel didn't have a 7th floor, but 13th is fine in asia) with a view both of the Petronas towers, and into the rooms on the other wing of the hotel.

The city itself was lovely, although getting around was most easily achieved via air conditioned walkways between shopping malls, and one time we tried to find an area with street food the whole outdoors of the city centre was full of smoke and ash from a car fire!

We browsed the malls (Lisa took a fancy to a rather nice Alexander McQueen handbag, which we discovered cost about £10000) and ate green tea ice cream and exciting curries in the food hall. On the second day there we went to the top of the towers, and across the sky bridge which made us both feel pretty wobbly, and we were quite glad that the ticket was for a limited time, and we were herded back down from the 88th floor.

The next day we used the subway, and a train to get out to the Batu Caves, a complex of temples utilising some spectacular caves in the cliffs we could see from the top,of the towers.

The first was full of life size models of the Hindu gods, and told various stories about waking a giant to fight in the war, and the monkey god not realising his tail was on fire.

The second was up a flight of about 300 steps (in 32° heat, with monkeys jumping all over people- at one point a monkey tried to jump on a lady's hat, discovered it wasn't solid, so bounced off her shoulder, leaving a tiny poo on her nose. She was not impressed. I laughed.

At the top it was like being in the bottom of a volcano, with open air above, and monkeys and chickens around, and some sweet little shrines around us.

A cornetto and a bottle of strawberry Fanta later, and we headed back into town. We tried to see the historic quarter of KL but it was surrounded by a building site so totally inaccessible.

The second part of Malaysia involved a plane to Penang, for a laze by the pool or on the beach, some reading of books and chilling out, and an enjoyable day trip to Georgetown, the old capital of the island, which is now a unesco world heritage site so protected to ensure it retains its colonial charm. Unfortunately, and for only the third time of the whole trip so far, rain stopped play, so we hid in a cafe and braved the storm, making a juice, an iced tea and a plate of (spectacularly good) waffles last a good hour and a half, with only the local cat to entertain us.

Eventually the rain subsided, and we happened upon a hairdresser called "son and dad" and realising this might be my last chance for a while, I allowed a man who spoke barely any English to have his way with my Barnet and beard. He did an excellent job, and I rounded the price up to something resembling what I used to pay for a haircut 10 years ago in Cardiff. Lisa was happy looking round the shops, and sheltering from some more rain.

We drank cordials and compared pokedexes with the old men who were camped out in the pokemon cafe, before eating some excellent Italian food (slightly randomly) and heading back to the resort on the 101 bus.

The final whole day we once again lazed around the hotel, only going out in the evening when we got hungry, exploring the night market, and eating curry from the hawker centre.

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