We’re back in Singapore now, about 14 hours from our flight home. Unfortunately, that means a 6am flight and a 3am wakeup call, but that’s what happens when Northwest has only one flight a day and we used miles.
It’s been a few days since I blogged, but the rest of our nine days in Malaysia were great.
After Kuala Lumpur, we spent a day in the relative coolness of the mountain retreat called the Cameron Highlands. After the heat of the lowlands (at least 90 every day, and very humid), it was wonderful to be in the mountains. We enjoyed the coolness by hiking three miles to the second closest town from our hotel (the closest town was only a mile away, but I made a wrong turn – oops). We also got to see a tea plantation/factory, a butterfly farm, and a rose garden.
I don’t know if we would have gone to any of those interesting stops if not for the plans of the tour agent, so that was good. Unfortunately, the hotel they picked for us was expensive and proper in a way that was totally lost on us (a problem we also had in KL). If we were to do this all over again, we’d change those two specific hotels because they were expensive enough to want to charge us an arm and a leg for internet access, but too big to show special service).
After Cameron Highlands, we spent a couple days in Penang, and the tour agent redeemed themselves there. We stayed at the Bayview Beach Resort (sorry, no links in this post because of the flakiness of the free internet at this cheaper hotel in Singapore), and it was a great place. After a couple weeks of cultural exploration and hiking in the Malaysian heat, it was wonderful to take a vacation from the vacation at a beach resort with a lovely pool, a helpful staff, and an oceanview from the balcony. We also explored for a bit the British and Chinese history of Penang’s main city, Georgetown, but the focus was relaxing near the beach.
An interesting thing about staying at a beach resort in Malaysia is the clientele – there were a lot of Japanese, Australians, and Iranians, a few Europeans, and very few Americans. It seems that when you’re travelling for culture or cities or history, you’ll see anyone in the world. However, when you’re travelling for tropical relaxation, you just go where it’s convenient. Australians go to Malaysia/Indonesia, Europeans go to the Mediterranean, and we Americans go to the Caribbean.
Douglas has been having a great time. He loves looking at the people around us, and the people here love playing with him. We don’t know if it’s a cultural difference to go more gaga over babies in general or just the novelty here of a white baby, but we get a lot more comments on him here than we do in America. We’ve had waiters and waitresses dote on him (including some asking to be able to hold him for nearly our entire meal), and we’ve had other tourists taking his picture. And he just loves it. Today was a great 7-month birthday for him as he got to play with everyone as we shopped and ate in Singapore.
We also found out that he’ll be quite a swimmer. We had pools at our hotels in both KL and Penang, and Douglas loved to play in the water. He was nervous at first, but by the end he was kicking and splashing and laughing all the time. His Mommy will take baby swim classes with him soon, and we’re glad that it’ll go well.
So, we need to get to bed soon. Tomorrow will be a long, long day.