After a brief visit to TESCO so Mel could feel at home we jumped on our 2 hour bus to KL and after 3 hours arrived in a packed bus station as everyone tried to get someplace for the chinese new years weekend.
KL is one huge dichotomy! Not sure if I can use it like that but never mind. There are huge 8 storey shopping malls, the tallest building, posh petroleum clubs, them parks INSIDE shopping malls and then also shanty towns, people going through rubbish bins, covered market stalls and lots of very old falling down buildings (think the debonair in 5 years!) - including our hostel which today had an electrical fire and smoke was everywhere. The biggest contrast is the hot humid days and freezing air conditioned nights. We are wearing more to go to bed.
So on our first morning we headed to the Petronas towers ( or patronas as Mel calls them!) and got our entry time for 1145am. Stu made mel go to the science museum which is entirely sponsored by malaysian petrol company HR. Mel loved it and got to make a lego car to see how to design cars well. Stu's looked like a unicylce and Mel's failed to make it down the track until the helper actually totally re made it. we both did the downhuill ski race. Mel tried to measure the speed of her throw and missed the target and lost the ball! Stu won the accerator race and Mel won the change the F1 car tyre race. We learnt lots about petrol and petrol companies - who are very good people who save the rainforest!
The trip up the patronas towers was good - and it is 294 times the height of Mel! - and our lunch at the food hall was fab - a two course meal for a quid! When we came out the tops of the towers had disappeared into cloud!
We walked to times square and visited the largest borders in the world and then the largest indoor theme park. It must cost a weeks wage for some to go in. Even we thought it was expensive at 50p a ride! Excellent rollercoaster that went up from the 5th floor to the 13th floor of the shopping mall. We also rode the kiddies train!
We came back on the monorail as advised by Jen and Alex although I dont think they meant us to do it in rush hour. We saw peoples shoulders and that was about all!
Again Stu's tour guide decision prooved good as we headed on bus number 11 to the batu Caves. We were confronted by a huge gold statue and had to walk 272 steps to the entrance - thankfully they number them so you know how far you have to go - who's great idea was that! There was a wedding going on and lots of baptisms so it was an exciting day. Mums and Dads carried babies up the 272 steps in slings hanging from bamboo resting on their shoulders. And i didnt even have to carry a rucksack up! Those with no hair had a gold paste on their head! 2 million people visited here last month and dragged statues up the steps which were attached to their skin by hooks!
We took a very busy bus back to Merdeka Square - which is like a little England with tudor houses and a cricket pitch. Also saw lots more mosques. Headed to central market for shopping and for Mel to buy a charm with the chinese new year symbol on as it was chinese new years!
The streets were very full - mel thinks because of chinese new years - STu thinks because of a KL gay community meeting as all were men and holding hands. I think the women were too busy cooking to be in the streets! We found a lovely lady who made yummy curry puffs -3 for 10p.
Chinese New Years Day and we stumbled upon a dragon dance. Stu got to feed the dragon which means he has good luck/ong. Mel found it too noisy and left just before so no ong for her! We walked past the old and new rail station and saw lots of rats in the sewers. We read all about the malay life (and Cocos was mentioned) in the national museum and saw the old PINK KL minibuses. Walked through the lake gardens and the islamic art museum, where we saw lots of mini mosques and then walked past the real and huge national mosque.
Back to hostel where mel got given good luck oranges ofr the new year. However the luckliest man is the satay stick man who doubled his prices for the new year!
Love from the country which charges you for wet wipes in restuarants when we didnt even want them!
mel and stu x