Saturday, April 2, 2011

Reflections of Malaysia - March 2011

Now that we have returned to Australia from our 24 day holiday I would like to post some photographs to reflect some memorable events. But first I would like to explain some impressions as observed by Anne and Neil. I have already stated that the Malay people are one of the most friendly people on earth and we were luckily invited by local people who gave us their sincere hospitality. I cannot thank enough of Shirley Ong, Emmerline, Bee Bee, Tenny and Jenny who welcomed us and shared their enjoyment of guiding and allowing us to visit their venues. Our amah of the 1980's gave us a Malaysian dinner when we visit them one hot afternoon on Penang. Outside our circle of friends there were almost no altercations with the local people only for a couple of minor incidences when KL taxi drivers try to rip us of with inflated fares.

The worst of Malaysia is the heat. At this time of the year the monsoon season was starting to kick in and was felt by many of us. It is an energy draining heat making all perspire even when sitting down. Some couldn't acclimatise during our entire holiday. The food, to most, is one of the best in the world. It has been documented and televised on many occassions that Penang is the food capital of the world. Undeniably we enjoyed the many varieties of dishes that Hokkien, Nyonya, Indian and Malay cuisine can offer. As for drinks one couldn't go past a glass of fresh lime juice or guava or watermelon or carrot juices. We even enjoyed a mixture of Western and local food buffet at one of Penang's famous hotels - the E&O. As for transport it is cheap and the condition of the road are excellent in most places however the Malaysian drivers remain aggresive and need to take stock of the increasing demand for road vehicles. As stated there were 200,000 new cars registered in 2010. This roads are choked and there are little or no police patrols on all expressways or outstationed roads. I believe the recruitment of new police is a major concern for Malaysia.

I did see some poverty in Malaysia, nevertheless, this has improved since the 1980's. I see that Sydney has more beggers than KL - in fact just walk along Hyde Park, The Domain and any of the streets that surround Central and Redfern Railway Stations, especially at night and one could see the worst side of Sydney.

As for our holiday it was great and we will visit the country again in the future. The exchange rate was the best since the early 1970's. Shop sales was one of the best enjoyment for the women folk and the plazas that abound in the major cities is amazing.

This is a priceless capture - Myrtle enduring fish therapy along Jalan Bukit Bintang Kuala Lumpur. The fish are cleaning the dead skin from Myrtle's feet.

Breakfast at Sri Ananda Bawang, Tanjong Bungah Penang. Note the carrot juices and rotis. Many meals were enjoyed here located just a few hundred metres from our Copthorne Hotel.

The entire length of Langkawi's Sky Bridge. Walking along this feature is banned during thunderstorms and strong winds - I wonder why?

Monkeys are everywhere in Malaysia and one could be fined heavily for feeding them. Some are viscious but most will keep their distance from humans whernever possible. When they become aggressive they bare their teeth and make threatening gestures. This photo of a monkey with young was taken by Kay when ascending the steps at Batu Caves

Not so long ago trishaws were the main transport in George Town Penang for locals and tourists. Now they are few in number and focused for the tourists only such as Neil and Tom. Taken outside the Boon Wah material shop Jalan Campbell Penang. Interestingly, the lady folk were inside selecting dress materials by the metres when this was taken on a hot morning.

Genting Highlands near KL is located in the heavens. Almost every day after lunch the mist settles in and obscures the buildings. The temperature drops and the population stay indoors. The colourful buildings in this photo are hotels that cater for patrons who will be attending shows and the only casino in Malaysia.

This is the National Monument in KL. It represents seven nationalities who were involved in the Malaysian Emergency during the period 1950's to 1980's. The soldiers depict an Australian digger, a New Zealand soldier, a British soldier, a Malay soldier, a Chinese soldier (fighting for the British), Fijian soldier and a Singaporean soldier. 

View of KL from the Menara Tower. Note the Klang River flowing throug the centre.

Myrtle loved having her picture taken. This one is titled "Myrtle On The Rocks"

Neil and Anne on top of the Boh Tea plantation hillside, Cameron Highhlands.

An excellent test for all of us to think about!! Located in the Youth Park, Penang