Malaysia

A country I knew little about, and Singapore I only heard of and knew as the business centre of the world for some reason.

Singapore was very sterile – too clean, tall, glass buildings all along the road and around the harbour, modern hotels and little traffic really.

Men in business suits coming out of Starbucks coffee shop in the hot, hot weather, supposedly quietly commenting on me coming in, knowledgably:  “A tourist!” – so what gave that away I wonder?  Sunglasses the locals didn’t seem to wear or need; the map in hand; a lost, uncertain look or surprise at finding a Starbucks (should no longer be a surprise that other places have the USAs regular brands everywhere, as the UK has long had too!) – or the elephant print dress from Cambodia that is so comfy and cool as I explore!

I am actually wearing that same dress now, as I write the post!  I still love it.  Cool and comfortable in hot weather, yes, here in the UK in 2018 summertime!

It took hours to get there overnight!   Long, long, long queues of multi-nationals, not enough buses to take everyone where they were going, another long wait for taxis, and hours just standing, wondering, waiting.    I hated it, after a short flight just hours to get to my hotel for two days!

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Kuala Lumpur was unexpected but I liked it, it felt safe and comfortable, interesting without too much, a mix of old life and new cultures imposing themselves on this city, this country – Indian temples unexpectedly in side streets;  a very efficient and helpful postal service (unlike New Zealand’s!) where I sent items I no longer had room to carry like gifts or things I’d bought, and they arrived pristine and on time!

After a shaky start – physically, practically, with starting to feel very ill, jippy tummy and eventually finding my horrible hostel that was just too dirty to stay in!  I had to leave in the evening after walking round, feeling awful, to find a safe, clean place which I did.  The room was a small double but on suite tiny bathroom I needed more than anything else!  I slept a lot, and on leaving the manager mentioned they hadn’t seem much of me, said I’d been ill and he was perplexed I hadn’t said – they would have got me medicine, and a doctor!  How caring that was!  It wasn’t something that I even considered in a foreign country like that, travelling alone!   But thanked him and moved on.

I didn’t eat the yummy spicy lamb meals, the curries I’d heard of and the exciting things I could have tried – but felt ill at the mere thought of eating anything!  I survived on fruit and water for the four days and survived it OK!

I was, sadly, very ill whilst in KL though, having eaten something that had a bug in before leaving Thailand.  Four days there, four days ill.  I dragged myself out day one to see the Petronus Towers I had been told to visit, in the very centre of a busy city, but I made it, enjoyed it and got the view from the top!

 

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