Catching Up ( Part 2 – Kuala Lumpur – Day 1 )

After parting ways with Nazir, we took a ferry over to the mainland an waited for our sleeper train. The heat, lack of solid sleep, walking, and jet lag were really starting to wear on us, so we kept nodding off as we waited.

About an hour after it was supposed to arrive, our train came in, we boarded and immediately crashed.

We woke up 6 or 8 hours later just out side of KL. We organized whatever came out our packs or pockets as we slept (which I don’t think was very much since we were both so exhausted, despite us still be shower-less and wearing the clothes we started in four days ago), and headed over to our hostel.

We had booked a 2 bed room at _____ for roughly $9/person/night. Jason thought we were staying here for 2 nights, which I didn’t think was right, but we thought was confident about, and so we checked in. The place was very nice. Situated three blocks away from a popular mosque/attraction, near a college and a sort of financial district with lots of bank headquarters, and walking distance from both Little India and Chinatown.

There, we met a girl, Kat, from outside of Manchester in the UK. She was planning on going to some canopy walk (which ended up being closed for the Muslim holiday of Mohamad’s birthday) and then to the Batu Caves, a Hindu temple hidden in these caves outside of the city. I had read about these caves and wanted to see them, and the pictures of the canopy walk (think ewok-style rope bridges 30-40 ft up in the trees in the jungle) looked pretty cool, so I asked if she minded us joining along.

We stopped by the Central Market to pick up some rice lunches to eat in case there wasn’t food at the caves and caught a #11 bus all the way there. This was pretty easy to do since just about every person that worked there knew where we wanted to go before we even opened our mouths. This probably should have been our first warning, but I think we all over looked this.

The caves ended up being kind of interesting, but were seemed like more of a tourist trap than anything else. The majority of the caves / temple were free to enter, but there was a side trip one could do to do some spelunking (the normal / temple part of the caves where very open), and stores selling food, offerings, and silvorines. There was even a snack shop, and photo place in the caves after climbing the 280 something stairs all the way up there.

This all being said, I wouldn’t say that it was a waste of time or $1.33 in bus fare going here. There were real Hindus that came here, many of who had a really pale paste pasted over their heads which I wondered what it was, and the caves themselves were cool to look at. And then there were the monkeys in the parkinglot and on the stairs that you could give food if you were careful enough to do so before they tried to steal it from you, which was pretty fun.

The next bus home got us back to the hostel around 2-2:30, and we decided to shower and nap. This nap, our first in real bed in four, or was it five days?, quickly turned into a small day’s sleep, as we didn’t get up till 9 at night.

Famished, we set out for food, and found a Chinese night market. This was pretty cool, but incredibly touristy. I’d be surprised if there were more of a few stands that sold anything other than nock-off watches, fake designer hand bags, cheap tee shirts, or new sneakers.

We then set out to try and find a good spot to take a picture of the towers in KL. This proved more difficult than we would have thought, but was a good excuse to walk around the city. We did sneak into a really nice hotel which had glass elevators running the outside of it, which we thought might lend to a nice view, but due to other buildings around it, really didn’t provide much other than a little excitement and the tenative idea to come back another time to use the pool. All the walking got us pretty turned around, and it was getting sort of late, so we caught a cab back to the hostel and called it a night.

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