Don't let the bed bugs bite

Trip Start Dec 28, 2006
Trip End Jun 28, 2007

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Flag of Malaysia  , Wilayah Persekutuan,
Tuesday, February 13, 2007

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Le Village,
By Justin Trauben

In Kuala Lumpur we stayed in an amazing little hostel in China Town called "Le Village." Part backpacker pitstop, part hippy commune, this place had an amazing mix of backpackers and from all over the world. Everyone hung out in the common area and stayed up late every night exchanging stories over a few drinks. There was one downside to "Le Villiage," a small price to pay. It was infested with enormous, nearly indestructible bed bugs that would nibble away at your flesh while you slept. In this episode, Dan wages war against one such bed bug (watch as it bounces off the wall after Dan's first flick, and returns from the spirit world on numerous occasions).

Bed bugs aside, "Le Village" can be considered one of the most welcoming and memorable experiences of our trip. From the first moments, it was clear that she was not your normal hostel. It is only labeled by a less than adequately sized hand made sign that has no direct line of view with the street, hidden in the center of the maze that is China Town. After being buzzed in through the iron gate, and traversing the sea of shoes and sandals that occupy the two floor stairway, you are greeted by lounging guests, Manu Chao from the stereo, fresh tea, and a frenchman in dreads who, while he properly checked you in and took your money, you'll later learn does not work there. Finding an employee is not hard, but differentiating one from a customer can be as everyone seems to share equally in the work and relaxing.

Backpackers are laying around chatting in various languages, and a girl reads to herself, swinging to the rhythm of the music in a suspended wicker chair, and scratching her legs more periodically than turning pages. The back room is half full of people poking around the refrigerator, pouring free coffee and tea, and watching their laundry spin as though it were giving a sermon. The walls are over-populated with vibrant artworks of entanglement, and before you know it, you're stuck in the whole web. While we only stayed in "Le Village" for two nights, it felt like a lifetime. The nights were spent passing around communal bottles of Pepe Lopez Tequilla while swapping stories from all corners of the earth. Intense games of chess raged throughout the room between people who often barely spoke the same language. Through all of this, there was always the scratching of bed bug bites. Limbs were yours, his, and hers. It did not matter, as long as you appropriately mixed nail pressure and circular motion.

We descended the overpopulated staircase and emerged from our oaisis in the bustling section of Kuala Lumpur, and sourly left for Singapore the next day. We left with plans and hopes to return, and look forward to initiating an entirely new group of victims at Le Village. Take off your shoes, forget you have skin, and jump in.
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Where I stayed
Le Village
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