Hey from Malaysia!
Left Thailand on a sleeper train on 14th which was more like a hospital.. really clean (yes good) bright blue curtains and silver bars everywhere. Got the train at 2am having been in Surat Thani train station since 3pm!! Got to the border at around 8am where we got off and went through immigration and then carried on the journey by bus to Butterworth. I was surprised at how green everywhere was, so many palm trees and huge well built roads. Once at Butterworth we got straight on a ferry to Penang, a little island to west of mainland Malaysia. Ferry took all of 5 mintues, jumped in a taxi with a very enthusiastic australian man on his travels and headed for Love Lane which in the old LP said it was the backpacker choice. First off Georgetown reminded me of Vietnam... old, crumbling, high ceiling and new buildings, lots of lanterns everywhere... found a guesthouse after checking a few but had too many creepy old men sitting in the lobbies! Ours was run by two tiny old men who were lovely! Room not great but it seemed to be the general backpacker standard here. Headed out for some food and then bed as it was late.
Next day- sightseeing of course! Penang Museum, Fort Cornwallis, Chinese Koo Kongshi house, Peranakan Mansion which is a magnificent old but restored house of a typical rich man... Malaysia is a mix of Indian, Chinese, and Malay so its really interesting to see all three different cultures mixed up in one small city.
Decided to leave the next day, for Perhentian Island!