Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Melaka, Malaysia

Earlier this year we travelled through Asia on a little family adventure, staying in Bali for a week and then Malaysia and Borneo. Malaysia was more of a brief stop over then a destination, with us staying only 5 days (the shortest time we've spent in one place abroad) but it was beautiful, different but beautiful none the less. Flying straight from Bali, we we're used to lush green surroundings and relaxed tropical vibes, instead we were greeted with the frenzy that is Kuala Lumpur. The short 3 hour flight had gone well, but exhaustion and anxiety were starting to set in while we fumbled to find luggage, food and a taxi, trying our hardest to adapt to a new language, culture and location. As per usual Lilly was an absolute dream, and I was once again thankful for having such an easy going baby in times of stress, eventually we found a taxi and began our tedious journey to Melaka in peak hour traffic. 

When we eventually arrived (3 hours later) we were exhausted, Lilly was overtired and going a little stir crazy in the taxi and Aaron and I were bickering as we tried to explain where our hotel was, the language barrier firmly in place, and our phones and iPad batteries dead. When we arrived it was chaos, our room was privately owned and we were required to contact the owners to get our key and with no where to go we had to sit in the lobby for a few hours until the transaction could be made. At this point we were beyond hungry, incredibly tired and in general just over everything. The room was less then great, a disappointment considering we had splashed out on it as a treat before going to the Bornean jungle for 2 weeks, and we were so overwhelmed with our experience so far we considered turning back and heading to the safety and comfort of Bali for the remainder of the trip.
After a dinner of instant noodles we retired to bed, hoping for our next day to be a whole lot lovelier.

After waking and readying Lilly we went exploring Melaka on foot, unacquainted to travelling in cities we were well out of our comfort zones, but proceeded to find food and coffee (although, both sadly from western franchises). Melaka was a bizarre and intriguing town, ghostly quiet and filled with modern asian dominance and pockets of western influences, english was not commonly spoken and people seemed less friendly, which only seemed to enforce our apprehensions.
We returned to our room, ate our instant noodles and mulled over what we would do. Eventually I contacted my parents who had recently returned from a trip to China, suddenly feeling homesick for the first time in my life, and with their help I remembered that getting out of my comfort zones was a great thing and in the end, would only make me stronger. So we picked ourselves up and made our way to the Jonker Street Markets, and for the first time since arriving we felt relaxed. It was filled with the most amazing aromas with food to match! We snacked on fresh fruit and traditional street food, shopped to our hearts content and generally just enjoyed the atmosphere and went back to the hotel late that night finally feeling that everything would be ok.
That night was probably our favourite, we spent the next 4 days walking the streets, visiting the tourist attractions, swimming in the hotel pool and in general trying to make the most of our little trip. While this wasn't the first time we had travelled overseas, it wasn't even my first time I had visited Malaysia (My family and I had stayed in Port Dickson for a month when we were immigrating to Australia) it was the first time where I felt challenged to make the most of a less then desirable situation. 


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52 Week Project (18) Australia (11) Bali (8) Birth (2) Borneo (1) Bus (6) Films (1) Food (1) Fremantle (1) Indonesia (1) Life (35) Lilly-Mary (37) Malaysia (1) Margaret River (1) Melaka (1) Penguin Island (1) Perth (3) Tips (9) Travel (25)