June 26, 2011 § 3 Comments
I took another day off last friday to go to Kuala Lumpur. I’m thankful Ms. Suria allowed me. :p Furhat and Assel went ahead on that Thursday since Furhat had to fix her visa extension. I took the 2:30PM bus with Sharon and we had a pretty good bus. We got to sleep for a long time because the seats were spacious. While on the bus, Sharon and I talked about a lot of things like religion, Chinese beliefs and customs, wanting to eat steak, and other things. The trip was around 5 hours long. Assel and Furhat then met us at the PuduRaya station and we bought our return bus tickets together. The station was really modern, it actually looked like a small airport. We took a train and the monorail to go to our hostel in Bukit Bintang and it was cool because Bukit Bintang is the shopping district in KL! Just a note, their trains really look like LRT2. And I read a nice saying from one of the cards there, it said: “the shortest distance between 2 people is a smile”.
We stayed at Paradiso Hostel right beside McDonald’s. It was beside a questionable “massage parlor” which our hostel did not fail to remind us not to go to. hahaha. But Paradiso was good and nice enough for RM40/night. It also had breakfast included: which is unlimited toast and jam. [during our first breakfast, Assel made 4 toasts for us each, the manager was shocked and reminded us to make sure to finish everything. naubos naman namin hehe] For our first night, we ate at Lot 10 Hutong, which is one of the most popular places to eat in KL. It features all the popular dishes in KL that are rated as the best by food connoisseurs for 4 generations now. I ate roasted duck…it was average. After that, we walked around and we spotted a bar with shisha (flavored tobacco). Assel asked us if we wanted to try it, she said it was really popular in Kazakhstan. Since we had an expert with us (hahaha), we all decided to give it a try. I don’t smoke and have no intentions of starting a habit, but it was bound to be fun to try the shisha with Assel, Sharon and Furhat so I didn’t even think twice about trying it. The shisha was RM35 (about Php525) but we found out that we had to order drinks before the shisha! As the guy rudely told us, “no drinks, no shisha”, so fine we ordered a drink each. I got a Virgin Pinacolada, but I ended up drinking a lot from Sharon’s Melon Paradise. We waited so long for the shisha but eventually it arrived and Assel taught us how to smoke it. We got a strawberry flavored shisha. It was fun blowing the smoke. I didn’t feel dizzy at all although Assel told us we should expect to get a little bit dizzy. We didn’t swallow the smoke so I don’t consider this as smoking. ;) The next time I want to do this is when I visit Assel in Kazakhstan!
The next day, as with all other people who go to KL, we headed for the Petronas Twin Towers to get a chance to go up the skywalk. Unfortunately, we were already too late at 8am as people have been there since 6am. We didn’t get any tickets! :( so we just took pictures outside.
With no idea what to do next after the failed attempt of lining up for the tickets, we decided to buy tickets for the HopOn-HopOff bus which goes around the whole KL city and stops at more than 20 popular tourist spots. It costs RM35, but with Sharon’s convincing skills, we all passed for students and got it for RM17. Actually, only Furhat and I were not students anymore. Luckily the guy selling the tickets was nice, he allowed us to buy the student fare even without our IDs.
The first stop we went down to was China Town. We inside a Chinese Tea Shop [see the irony of doing Chinese things here in Malaysia haha] where we sampled some tea in traditional Chinese style. Sharon was our official guide since she is in fact Chinese. :p I bought Pu-erh tea, as Sharon’s advise as the best for women, from the shop. I was looking for this smoky-flavored tea I recall having from my childhood. Unfortunately, after sampling 2 Oolong Teas, I think what I’m looking for is an indian tea. The problem is I can’t recall what the tea is called, all I know is that I might need to go to India and look for it there. I know that tea when I taste it.
After that, we went into China town itself. It was a usual China town. That street (Petaling Jaya) looks a lot like the setting of my favorite Close-Up Commercial [where the music is Come Closer]. All I bought there was food. hahaha.
After that, we ate lunch at Kenny Roger’s! We didn’t want to eat Chinese because we’ve been eating Chinese for like FOREVER, but then we ended up eating in a western fastfood. We waited for the next bus, and our next stop was their Independence Square, and after that was Titiwangsa Lake. Sharon was so tired that she slept in the bus. I want to post her picture sleeping in the bus here but she might get mad. haha. Titiwangsa Lake is just a man-made lake within a recreational park. We rented a boat that you had to cycle to move. Very much like the ones in Baguio. Furhat wanted to try going under the waterfall, and I agreed. Baad idea, we ended up SOAKING WET. Our butts were completely submerged with the pool that formed in the seats of the boat. It was all thanks to my brilliant maneuvering! Good thing my tea and my camera didn’t become casualties.
it was sooo hot and we were all complaining except Assel, who reprimanded meby saying “you shouldn’t be complaining because you’re from the Philippines and you’re supposed to be used to the sun” to which I answered “that’s exactly why I don’t like it, I’ve had enough of it”. but I’m kidding, I love the sun, just not the afternoon sun please. I’m 3 tones darker now already.
We then went back to Bukit Bintang and ate dinner. I ate this minced meat dish for the first time. It was really tasty!
We then decided to go back to Petronas for night pictures of it. Sharon’s ankle was swelling, so we decided to take a cab to the twin towers. The cabs were charging so high at RM20 one way because there was heavy traffic. Sharon was able to bargain with one cab for RM25 back and forth. When we arrived at Petronas, the cab driver demanded that we just take 5mins to do the pictures and come back at once. We rushed the picture taking so we didn’t get good shots.
We ran back to the cab to find out the sad truth that he left us with our RM15. Ohwell. We took a cab back again for RM15, and indeed there was heavy traffic in Bukit Bintang. Sharon got tired from all the running and traffic stress so she decided to go ahead back to the hostel. Furhat wanted to try this Moroccan restaurant for its tea and biscuits so Assel and I went with her. The Moroccan tea was in fact a nice and interesting experience. We drank the Moroccan green tea with mint leaves and sugar.
After that, we went home and slept. I slept in a mixed dorm with Sharon. Our roommates were 2 girls and 2 boys all from London. I finished writing my postcards for Assel, Sharon and Furhat before sleeping. [we are going to mail each other postcards from here to the others’ respective countries before leaving].
The next day, we decided to go shopping. We got out of the hostel 9:30, but the malls were still open, so I suggested we get on a hoponhopoff bus first to kill time. It turned out that the bus took 2 hours to go back to Bukit Bintang and we wasted 2 hours on the bus! Assel got pretty upset about it and I was so scared that she might have gotten mad at me, but thankfully she got over it quickly and we were okay again after several minutes! phew!! :)
We went around the malls and didn’t find much to buy, so guess what we did in KL…WE ATE AT A STEAKHOUSE.
Talagang pagkain ang pinakamalaking gastos namin dito. hahaha. We paid RM45 each for our meals [this is really huge to our usual RM5/meal] but we were all craving for steaks. We ate at The Ship. There was not much people there. The steak was pretty good though. :9
We got back to the hostel around 4pm already, and our bus was leaving at 4:30. We thought we were already late, because we reached the bus station 4:30 already. We ran like hell again and it turned out the bus was late as well! We got back to Penang around 11pm already. Overall, I think Kuala Lumpur is indeed a beautiful city!! Their buildings and skyscrapers are balanced out by numerous ecoparks around the city. They have a preserved rainforest in the middle of the city! Not every corner is clean, but in general it is cleaner than Manila definitely. Their transportation system is efficient, and I am so enthralled by KL Sentral’s state of the art technology as the central station to the airport, trains, buses, and taxis. The city is also very tourist friendly (although the “metered” taxis are not metered at all!), with the ingenious hoponhopoff bus, the street signs, the free maps, and the train system. Kelan kaya magiging ganito sa Metro Manila?