Snippets of Melaka, Malaysia

Uneven and cracked foot paths, crazy drivers, incredible food, friendly people, the smell of petrol, durian and cooking smells, patterned tiles and beautiful buildings…

We fell in love with Malaysia – the place, the diverse culture, the multicultural people and the delicious food almost instantly; and I think it’s a love that will stand the test of time.

Tomorrow we leave Malaysia – which quickly became home – for Sri Lanka, and whilst we’ve loved every moment here, we are so excited for the thrills of something different and new.
I once read somewhere that Sri Lanka is where you should head if South East Asia has become “normal”…¬† Somehow, I feel that we’re ready for what Sri Lanka has to offer.

Ready for the next adventure

Ready for the next adventure

Although we’ve only had a short time here, it’s been a great time, and we have made some great memories, met some wonderful people, and learned a lot.

Here are some snippets of our time in Malaysia:

Creative Recycled Pots

Creative Recycled Pots, Melaka

Dramatically decorated tri-shaws

Dramatically decorated tri-shaws, Melaka

Dutch Square and Christ Church

Dutch Square and Christ Church, Melaka

Heritage Building, Melaka

Heritage Building, Melaka

A well-deserved break!

A well-deserved break!

The beach! Portuguese Settlement, Melaka

The beach! Portuguese Settlement, Melaka

Delicious deliciousness

Delicious deliciousness

IMG_8373

Isn't he cute?

Isn’t he cute?

Isn't HE cute?

Isn’t HE cute?

An example of the many gorgeous, intricate tiles in Melaka

An example of the many gorgeous, intricate tiles in Melaka

Morning Market

Morning Market, Melaka

More delicious deliciousness

More delicious deliciousness

Architectural Beauty

Architectural Beauty

Advertisements

Malaysia: Ribena, Roti and Papping

Well we’ve made it; we’re finally here! The count down is over, and instead of shivering through the rest of Melbourne’s Winter, we’re now sweating in Asia’s endless Summer.

We arrived into KL and navigated our way through the city to down-town Chinatown; the backpacker haunt. Wading through the night markets with bulging backpacks on both our fronts and backs, we were hit with the sounds, smells and heat of Kuala Lumpur. And it felt – and feels – so good to be back in Asia.

Honking horns and wild traffic, market stalls and enticing foods, the smell of durian mixed with car fumes, people everywhere and touters touting – it feels so normal – like we never left; and we are back into the ‘swing’ of things already.

On our first night in Malaysia we sat back in our chairs at a little local restaurant, ordered roti and dahl, and toasted to the next seven months; to our Asian trip of a life time.

Today we were on the move before we could even begin to settle in Kuala Lumpur. We took a bus – actually, three – to Melaka: a quaint historic UNESCO heritage town, 3 hours drive south of KL.

We wandered every main and back street, up alleyways and lane ways, through art galleries and eclectic shops. We stepped through Chinatown and Little India, and were exposed to the many different cultures and nationalities that make up this township.

IMG_8183It’s a beautiful place here; its gorgeous old buildings and incredible architecture make for little surprises at each turn. Paint peels from every wall and patterned tiles are cracked and loose; not every building is beautiful but the charm of the place is alive and unmistakable.

IMG_8196
Rickshaw drivers with overly decorated vehicles relax in the town centre, chatting to their friends or snoozing in their empty seats.
The evening lights dance on the river, locals and foreigners are out and about: the people are warm and friendly and the place has a genuinely relaxed vibe.

IMG_8197After hours of walking and exploring, we found ourselves back in the town centre square, where we sat down in front of the iconic Red Christ Church, sipping Ribena Juice, people watching and sheltering from the heat momentarily.
People watching is so easy to do in Asia; it’s intruiging and fascinating and interesting and entertaining.

Whilst sitting in the shade, a girl came up to us and asked “I take you photo?”
Accepting her request was a rookie error.

She paved the way for a group of Indonesian tourists to then bombard us with photo after photo, each one for which they happily posed around us, boxing us in with their arms around us. They laughed and squealed as each one took turns in being the “photographer” for everyone else in the group, whilst Jake and I gave uneasy, uncertain and confused smiles. As soon as it seemed the papping would stop, another iPhone or camera appeared and another stepped forward happily to pap us.

It made us wonder: firstly, what do they want and what will they do with a hundred photographs of two complete strangers, and secondly, is this a taste of what’s to come?…

Oh, Asia. We had to laugh.

IMG_8194Continuing the search for lunch, which at 8pm, had instead become a quest for dinner, we finally stumbled upon a corner shack/restaurant. The man out the front was cooking with two large woks and sending oil, egg and grains of rice flying high into the air with each toss.

Deeming the food safe and the vendor trustworthy, we ordered  a basic meal and sat down to enjoy the delicious ending to our first full day in Asia.

And it was amazing.