Friday, August 24, 2007


The view from our hotel window is of KL Tower and the Twin Towers. This morning we woke up, got out of bed, and looked out the window just in time to see somebody jump from the tower. THAT WAS PRETTY SURPRISING.

A few seconds later the parachute opened.

This continued to happen all day. Every time we went back to the hotel, I'd look out the window and somebody would jump. Perhaps it wasn't all day, but it seemed like it. We couldn't actually see the tower from most of the places we went today.

We have discovered that, like it or not, we are stuck in KL for the next couple of days. The school holidays end on the 26th (that's Sunday, right? I've lost track) and so all the buses to anywhere we wanted to go were full. If we really, REALLY wanted to go to Penang (which we don't, not yet) we have the choice of taking a bus that leaves at midnight. After the accidents that have been in the news recently, we are not really keen to take a night bus. We have decided to stay in KL for a couple of days, and shave a couple of days in KL off the end of the trip.

We have been eating a lot. While Kuching was a lot of fun, I have to admit the food here is a lot better. Not that it was bad in Kuching, just not as good or as varied. Today I had roti chanai for breakfast and The Man had tosa, and we both had teh tarik. Then for lunch he had fish ball noodle soup (no, that is not what you think. Think 'meat balls')and I ... wasn't hungry? What happened, did I eat something and forget? Maybe the soy milk drink we had in between filled me up. For dinner we had nasi champur, and it was wonderful. (I ate more than The Man did, which is unusual for me, so perhaps I did miss lunch by mistake.) And after we've finished here we'll have a post-dinner dinner, probably noodles of some description since we're in Chinatown.

I wish I could eat this well in Japan.

Today wasn't a very interesting day to write about, aside from the jumpers. It was a maintenance day. I don't suppose you want to hear about getting the washing done, or The Man's haircut, or all the other little things you have to do now and again even when you're on holiday. I also replaced my Palm battery charger, which had been playing up. It is the second one I've had problems with, both bought from the same place here, so I took it in and showed them. They took out a new one and plugged it in, and it had exactly the same problem. The battery charge indicator flicked on an off when you wiggled the cable, and would only stay charging if you had it in exactly the right position. This is a Palm travel charger problem, not my problem, it turns out.

They replaced the cord part of the travel charger with something tougher, and now it works perfectly. They didn't charge me, either, even though I did not have the receipt for my original purchase. How's that for good service?

What was not so nice is that The Man had his pocket picked on the way back from that mall. This is the first time it has happened to him in decades, he told me (doesn't that make him sound OLD?) and he was most indignant. But there was no point beating him up over it (he was managing quite well himself, I suspect) so I told him it was just one of those things and since there was nothing we could do about it, never mind. We are now, however, being a bit more careful.

I suspect it happened because we were on a very crowded train, at the station of a very big shopping mall full of tourists (school holidays, remember?) and also because he was wearing his other trousers. The good travel trousers, which have harder-to-pick pockets, were at the laundry.

So it was a slightly less good vacation day, today. We had trouble at the Post Office (which closed suddenly because of a power outage), did not get our bus tickets, we lost a bit of money (not a disastrous amount, more an ouch! amount), and had to rethink our plans because of the lack of available transport. But our plans were so loose they were practically immoral anyway, and we can bear the ouch! Also, good food makes up for almost anything.

It's almost midnight and I'm hungry. I'm out of here.


Pkchukiss said...

I travel on the overnight buses once or twice a year when my family goes over to visit my mother's family in Sungei Petani (which is somewhere north of Penang).

Imagine my shock when I saw the link today:

I've always stuck to one bus company (a rather reputable one that always advertises on the local media). So far that company has had no incidents, but I'm pretty shakened up to read about that.

Badaunt said...

We were shocked as well, but actually the result is that now the buses are being driven VERY, VERY CAREFULLY, because they are being checked so much more rigorously. The authorities have really come down hard on the bus companies. It actually feels safer than it did before.

It has also become harder to get tickets sometimes, though, because there are fewer buses running.