Malaysia is multiple
Trip Start Jun 16, 2011
69Trip End Nov 10, 2011
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After negotiating a cyclopouss who took us both (with our backpacks) to the backpackers' area, we stopped and took cover. Yes, rain. Shit. Right when we are supposed to be strolling the streets for a guest house. That's our luck :-)
Eventually it sort of stopped raining heavily and the soft rain remaining allowed us to look for a place to stay. Can you believe there is a street in Georgetown, right in the backpackers' area called "Love Lane" ??? I giggled and started singing "the looove lane" in a crooner voice, covering the infamous "Love Boat" TV series. Giggles giggles... We picked a hostel eventually and went for one room only. Well, we would share a big bed !
Soon after dropping our stuff, we went for dinner to a recommended Indian restaurant, the Kapitan. Yummy : biryani, dal and spinach, nan, raita... Yummy but heavy. Hence our going for a long digestive walk after that. We ended up in an area full of bars next to each other. It reminded me with horror of a similar spot in Barcelona that I particularly hate. As if there was a huge billboard in big letters reading "GET DRUNK NOW !". And to add to the gloomy feeling, the place was of course deserted... Low season has this effect on otherwise packed places. You even less feel like going there.
So we continued walking. At some stage, I feel I am back in Laos, on the Bolaven plateau, only in a more urban environment. Indeed, I can hear this guy singingnand he's soooooo off tune, I feel it can ONLY be a giant karaoke. We get in there and... No ! This is, again, three people, one guy and two girls, obviously Chinese who are "performing" on stage. Around the stage, a huge food court and in the center those white plastic round tables with red plastic chairs. There we are. Typically Asian place. Packed with Chinese only people, dressed up for "the night out", watching the "show", and visibly loving it since they all sing too :-))) I cannot help laughing at the scene and convince (without too much effort) Kevin to have a drink there. OH. MY. GOD. I could have peed in my pants. Again my ears were screaming with pain because of these horrible singers but it was absolutely hilarious to see them perform and the crowd sing with them. Unfortunately it stopped soon. We had arrived a bit too late...
Time to go to bed ! I introduced Kevin to the Onion as well as despair.com and try to make him believe I really wanted to get up really early in the morning... Hehehe.
At 10:30am he got impatient :-)
We eventually got out of the room and went for breakfast in another restaurant for Roti with banana and to also try Roti Kaya (coconut marmalade) recommended by my friend Kami. Yummy !
After that, we went for sightseeing : Georgetown is UNESCO world heritage classified in some areas. It used to be called the pearl of the orient... It's full of British colonial style buildings and somehow, it felt like Cape Town a bit (with way more ethnic variety hahahaha !). A visit to the Penang museum confirmed what I had felt in Langkawi and again the night before when passing in front of shops that were successively in Chinese or Arabic : Malaysia is multiple. There are tons of ethnies which came to Penang. The result is a huge melting pot of Malays (this refers to the Muslims of Malaysia now...), Chinese, Indians, Europeans, Eurasians, Burmese, you name it ! In 5 minutes you are going to see a wat, a Chinese taoist temple, an Indian hindouist temple, a mosque, a church. I love this. This is how the world should be. All these people live next to each other of course, not necessarily together. But they don't bother each other. They live in the same location, sharing it and respecting the others' space.
Soon enough it's already time for me to leave for the airport... And say goodbye to Malaysia and Kevin Zi German ! Safe travels my friend. See you in Singapore or KL ? :-)
As for Malaysia, this is not my last trip to this country...