Some scary moments and good company
02.06.2010 - 05.06.2010 33 °C
Melaka is pretty touristy - the River Cruise is like being on a Disneyland set. But it's a UNESCO World Heritage site as Tony the taxi insisted on telling me. While I was waiting for the Cruise, I just had time for a FISH SPA - my first fish nibbling experience. For the uninitiated, you put your feet in water with loads of little fish who then make a beeline for you and nibble off the dead skin - sounds gross but it's great. Loads of wide-boy rickshaw cyclists around the main tourist area - a lady's bag was taken when she helped a man who had dropped his keys - all very suspicious. Getting braver about food - had Chicken Nyonya for lunch at a lovely riverside restaurant.
Tony the taxi picked me up as agreed and took me to the bus station for the 8:00am bus to Temerloh. What I had planned to do was meet up with the train at Mentakab that would take me to the Taman Negara Rainforest but the bus was SOOO late getting to Temerloh that I missed the only train. We had to stop once for the driver to pick up his lunch and to pick up extra passengers for cash, I think. Had to re-think plans and decided to bus it back to KL and get train towards Thailand and 'do' the east coast of Malaysia on my way back in July. Arrival times are a MYTH. Decided on the overnight train to Butterworth (Penang) and then the sleeper to Bangkok - this would mean two days of trains but what the heck. Bangkok seems to be OK now.
First horrible experience - waiting in VIP lounge for overnight train to leave at 11:30pm. I'm the only passenger in this lounge and, just as I'm getting the lift down to the platform, the young attendant insists on showing me his prized possession! I didn't have time to speak to the police which I was furious about as he may well do it again to somebody else - girls, stay clear of the VIP lounge at KL station if you're on your own!
After arriving at Butterworth at 6:30am, decided not to go to Penang (ferry crossing) but stayed on mainland - very uninspiring. Slept on train platform while waiting for afternoon sleeper. Finally got on train to be greeted by a group of drunk Thais in my sleeping area - turns out they're the overnight staff. Anyway, cleared away and Sunny, my new Penang friend, chatted until lights out. Great night's sleep - always get the bottom bunk - had great breakfast while watching the sun rise on the Thai Buddhist temples. At a level crossing, I saw FOUR large ladies on one motorbike. Sunny put me in taxi and I arrived at Atlanta hotel in one piece after two days of very mixed experiences.