Back in the northern hemisphere!
Trip Start May 18, 2003
272Trip End Ongoing
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It's been a whopping thirty months since I left Kuala Lumpur heading for Auckland; now that I'm back it feels like I never even left. Nearly everything is the same here, even the hostel staff at Anuja recognised me!
The 10 hour 40 minute direct flight from Auckland to KL was fine. The food was good and my console was fully working with movies on demand. No other passengers seemed to be taking advantage of the head to head two player console games so I had to be content with just beating my own high scores in between movies.
On arrival in KL and after getting though immigration and customs I couldn't help feeling just a little bit smug at how I knew exactly where to go to take the RM10 bus and RM1.70 train to the heart of the city (the taxi fare is around RM70).
Last night I opted to stay at a different hostel for my first night back in KL. Kameleon was OK (RM10 for a dorm room, which was empty except for me) but I'm back at Anuja tonight as it's the same price but has air con switched on in the room during the evenings.
This morning I managed to catch up with Brenda, a friend I met during my last visit to KL. She asked me if I had come back to KL for the Malaysian leg of the Formula One Grand Prix; I had no idea it had already begun! I'm not really into F1 motor sport but I thought I might buy myself a ticket as the cheap seats were rather cheap. The full three day ticket only cost RM50. Ironically organised transport to and from the F1 circuit is RM50 a day.
I've spent the rest of the day walking around some of the city streets, trying to figure out if anything has changed in KL. Short answer: no. The monorail seems to be finally finished and operational, I suppose that's something. But then again KL didn't need one to begin with. The temperature has been predictably hot and humid, and the food is just as good as I remember. The sometimes putrid street smells are just as I remember too :o(
In 24 hours I have become totally at home again, even the humid weather is not phasing me now. I'm travelling a lot lighter through Asia than during my last visit here, which helps a great deal. The total weight of all my gear is about 15kg, which is good but there is always room for improvement :o)
After the Grand Prix finishes on the weekend I'll probably be heading north, either into Thailand or somewhere else in Malaysia. As much as I enjoy this city I've already spent far too much time in KL during 2003 to warrant spending any more time here on this visit.