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The rarely updated blog of Joel Dixon
< Yeah ... Baby! | Malaysian Vegetable Curry >

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - 2010

# Posted by Joel Dixon at 06/04/2010 21:20:06
Updated by Joel Dixon at 07/04/2010 22:45:10 - Added photos from Jules


This past Easter weekend, a friend and I decided to spend the weekend in Malaysia. This is our story:

The Setup

Last Wednesday I was at farewell drinks for a co-worker, I was chatting with other work mates about living life and being spontaneous. How I should stop waiting around for things to happen (like when I can afford to travel overseas, etc) and live life for the now.

The next day, we were having a few drinks at my manager's apartment (notice a pattern?) and I was still thinking on that theme. I had two more items to go on my 10 things list, and decided to knock one of them off. I then pronounced "I'm going to Singapore this weekend!"

Everyone was positive towards my idea (everyone was drinking), and I eventually realised that I'd prefer to go to Tokyo. Julian decided that he liked the way I was thinking - and said he'd join me. So I left the night early to go home and plan an impromptu Japanese holiday. As pretty much all flights to Tokyo were booked out for the next two days - we settled on Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia as our destination. We also decided that staying in a backpackers hostel would be a different experience, so we booked a few rooms at the Green Hut Lodge.

Everything was booked on the Thursday night - and we left for the airport Friday night to get into KL around 6am Saturday morning.

Arrival

When we first arrived at the hostel, we questioned our accommodation choice immediately. We went for a quick walk and saw the penthouse suite at the hotel across the street was only around $140 a night. While on our walk we also saw a heap of 7-11s, and heard a heap of car horns. I guess we looked weak-legged - as 75% of the taxis passing us would honk their horn and yell "Taxi!" out of their windows at us. We'd heard enough about dodgy taxis to remain pedestrians.

When we got back from our walk we decided to stick with our hostel for the first night - and upgrade the next night if needed.

The Hostels walls
I really don't understand the colour scheme for this room - maybe it's better I don't

The hostel bed
The room could only just fit the bed, but the air-con worked and it was pretty clean

City Walk

We decided to go for a walk around the city, and went on a treasure hunt in a local shopping pavilion (just try to find some chalk in a very high-class shopping centre). Outside the pavilion there was a guy with a "Free Hugs" sign that I couldn't resist, but I was surprised to hear that I was the first person that took him up on his offer that day.

We had a look at the Petronas Twin Towers, checked out the monorail, drank some American-style root beer floats and ate a genuine KL lunch.

Free Hugs!
He wasn't that bad a hugger to be honest

MILO!
The Milo nuggets are what I wish our Milo Bars resembled!

KL Lunch
Our Malaysian lunch, very nice

Monorail
Mono-d'oh!

Petronas Towers
The Petronas Towers. Tickets are free - and you can go at any time you'd like - but you need to line up from 7am to get the ticket.

Root Beer
Not Malaysian at all - but I love my root beer floats!

Watches
Almost more than motorcycles, Malaysians love their high-priced watches

Batu Caves

Although not too enthused - we decided to check out the local Batu Caves, mainly drawn to the promise of monkeys. We had great difficulty finding the bus to get us there (buses in KL don't actually run to a published schedule), then the bus took ages to reach the destination.

But when we finally arrived - I was so happy we decided to make the trip - the place was beautiful. Firstly, it was hard to not notice the giant statue of Murugan - but it was the cheeky monkeys that I enjoyed the most. They were running around everywhere, stealing food off tourists and climbing everything. The inside of the cave was pretty impressive as well, although a bit of a shame that people had scratched their names in the walls.

Batu Statue
Even the giant statue of Murugan would struggle climbing all of these steps

Cave inside
The inside of the caves, really pretty!

Monkey Milo
"Milo the Monkey" stole my empty drink container

Milo container
... and immediately dropped it when he discovered it was empty

Monkey on the post
Monkey on a post

Dinner

Dinner on day 1 was a huge highlight for me. We decided to eat at one of the street restaurants, and it was amazingly good food for the price we paid. It was also a thrill to see half the road blocked by the tables and chairs of the restaurants.

Road tables
It must have taken a long time to drive down this street when dinner was on

Local beer
Jaz, a local beer, was cheap and went down smooth

Food
Sambal rice and chicken ginger, onion - very nice - and no annoying side effects

Night Time

We went for a few beverages at one of the local tourist bars. It started a little slow, but around 11pm or so the bars really started filling up. We weren't taking advantage of the cheap Malaysian beer, drinking a "fresh" German brew - Starkers. Because it needs to be drunken within 7 days there's no preservatives and apparently reduces the chance of hangovers (apparently).

Beer
The beer comes in it's own keg and is tapped onsite. Pretty classy, and the fact that the beer is served by a Japanese waitress in a German uniform classed it up some more

The night was pretty hilarious but we didn't get ourselves into any trouble, which I was happy with. Getting home around 3 am (having about 2 hours sleep in the past two days) we both slept for about 12 hours straight.

Day 2

Day 2 was pretty tame by Day 1 standards. We still had some fun, visited the KLTower, had an incredible meal at an Indian restaurant and had some drinks sitting outside the hostel for the end of the night. We decided that the hostel was actually pretty good as part of our whole experience. Cheap and clean was the motto - and they were true to their word.

Summary

Malay words learnt: 1 (restoran - pretty obvious)
Souvenirs bought: 0
Fun had: plenty

More Photos
Here are some more photos from Julian's camera

Free Hugs!
My free hug.

Long time between showers
Getting towards the end of a long day

Starkers Girl
The German-attired girl serving us booze

Some random Belarus chick
We said hello to some random Belarus chick


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Comments

Awesome
Dixon,
Awesome mate, living life to the max.
You'll have to fill me in more next time we do lunch.
- Hitman


# Posted - 07/04/2010 21:29:42
Definitely, you have to let us know when you're free for UBs!

# Posted - 07/04/2010 22:09:05

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