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I've been reminded recently by a friend that I haven't done a trip update in awhile! My apologies readers! The Internet situation in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore was terrible! KL the Internet was literally slower than dial-up at times, and Singapore it was coin paid, so being cheap, I only used Internet for essential emails and facebook time!

Old Navy sandals
Old Navy sandals

In my last post, worries of political turmoil and airline shut-downs were looming, but luckily by the time we were to fly out the airports were back in business! In contrast to Bangkok, KL was much more orderly, cleaner, and modern. KL seems like a great place to live what with its awesome shopping and super cheap food. One can feast like an emperor everyday for literally only a couple bucks! Luckily I did lots of mall and street walking to work it off. Every mall in KL seemed to be at least 5 floors. Pavilion Mall was the best mall for luxury goods: Chanel, Gucci, Tod's, LV, Coach, Marc Jacobs, Prada, Dior, and so forth and so forth. Plus, when your feet need a rest, just head down to the bottom floor of Pavilion for some great food court eats. Unlike Thailand, there is no street vendors and in replacement, the food courts are your next best bet for cheap, authentic eats. We ate at a food court almost everyday! For restaurants, check out Madame Kwan's for Malaysian eats, and Hakka restaurant, which serves Hakka-style Chinese food. Being half-Hakka myself, I was really excited to eat at an actual Hakka restaurant, but oddly enough I didn't recognize any of the dishes! KL is also really cool because it is very multicultural. Everyone seems to be able to speak at least 2 languages and signs are all in English, Malay, Chinese, and Tamil. The only downsides of KL was the tourist sites, which were often all hype and no substance.

After a few days in Malaysia it was time to bus to Singapore. Our hostel had told us that our bus would pick us up at our hostel, but when the time came, a random woman from the bus company picked us up in her car, drove madly through KL rush-hour and dropped us off at the bus depot with a man who didn't seem to speak English, who then shooed us like chickens into the packed bus station and pushed us onto the closest bus. Was it the right bus? We had no idea as everyone on board was a local and our bus driver appeared to be mute. Our only reassurance was the words Singapore on the side of the bus. 6 hours of non-air conditioned driving later, we arrived sweaty and breathless in Singapore. The humidity there is thick! Still, it was less hot than Chiang Mai surprisingly and our room at the YMCA was the nicest we'd been in thus far. I had high hopes for Singapore, but they were all dashed. My hopes had been for good eats, cheap shopping, and cool sights. However the reality was expensive food, even more expensive shopping, and lame sights. If you head to Singapore, don't even think of heading to Sentosa Island, Singapore's "tourism hot spot" - it is a black hole which you cannot escape from without spending at least over 100 dollars. The only thing lamer than Sentosa was KL's Sunway Lagoon amusement park. However, Singapore is as clean and safe as they say, and having everything in English is really nice break from constantly being "lost in translation".

Currently I'm in my cozy hostel in Taipei after having survived my first typhoon! Yes, first there was political unrest, now a tropical storm. What next?! Taipei has been pretty cool thus far and I'm looking forward to spending my last week in Asia here eating, shopping, and taking in the sights. The good side of the typhoon was that I got to socialize more than I have the entire trip by hanging out with everyone at the hostel. I'm also looking forward to forging out on my own this week since my travel buddy has decided to split paths from me in Taiwan. Reasons why we split is something I don't want to get into on a public blog, but 4 weeks alone with one person who isn't your boyfriend is very tiring. Ah well, our room was too tiny for both of us anyways! So far in my time here I've gone up Taipei 101, one of the world's tallest buildings (FYI Taiwan, but Toronto's CN Tower is still taller! Take that bitches!!) and shopped at the luxury malls at its base; I've eaten pig's ear and done Japanese buffet; and ran across flooded streets to various Taoist temples! I've also gotten tons of confused looks from locals, which is still kinda odd. Understandably I can see them being confused by a Chinese person who speaks perfect English instead of Mandarin, but even when I'm just walking around I often see people, old men especially, looking at me funny. Perhaps I have a huge spaghetti stain on my stomach? Maybe it's because they aren't sure what I am... even one of my fellow hostelers thought I was Jewish! Oy vey.


Add a Comment Yes I'm still alive and Old Navy sandals are awesome in typhoons