We arrived back in Kuala Lumpur with a bump - a right bump! We'd left the Philippines on time once again with Air Asia doing the driving. Well as E was extolling the virtues of the airline and our 8th flight with the company, we, and others on board, had a scary experience. The flight was supposed to be nearly 4 hours long but just after 3 hours we were told to get ready for landing at KL. As we approached we seemed to be closer to the buildings, trees, countryside, etc than was usual (remember we'd flown into KL a number of times already) and were coming in much faster than normal. As we hit the runway E also noticed that we'd 'touched down' nearer to the end of the runway than usual. Well, the touch-down was more of a bounce down - we hit the ground so hard that we were thrown back in our seats - because no sooner had we hit the runway were we up again, with the nose of the plane moving upwards and veering to the left. Passengers were either sitting in stunned silence or screaming. Part of the interior infrastructure came away and hit passengers a few rows in front of us on the head, illustrating how hard the landing had been. Strangely an older 'official' ran from the back of the aircraft to help out (this too wasn't normal) - but in a matter of seconds it was all over and we were heading down the runway to a very slow crawl into the terminal. The silence from the aircrew and cabin crew was palpable and their demeanour when we alighted wasn't at all normal. We've had hard landings in the past normally accompanied with an apology but on this occasion - nothing! All talk among the passengers heading for immigration was of the incident and people were taking photographs and drawing the attention of the ground-staff to the aircraft. Both of us certainly felt a wee bit apprehensive of our next flight - with Air Asia - and were a bit physically sore from the effects of the landing.
It was nice being back in KL and we'd booked a hotel from where our trip to the Taman Negara National Park was to begin. However, unfortunately our trip was called off so we decided that we should try to reschedule our return to Australia to give us more time to wind up all our affairs before heading off to New Zealand. Unfortunately this also meant that we wouldn't have time to catch up with Ganesh (although we did speak to him and Devei on the phone from our hotel) and other members of Devei's family because of the time it took to sort things out. We did, however, manage to fit in a visit to the top of the KL Tower, the highest point in Kuala Lumpur which gives excellent views and shows off the city at its best, a much needed foot massage, some shopping and a return visit to Bijan (www.bijanrestaurant.com) for another exquisite Malaysian meal.
E & M xxx