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Down UnderImpressions of Asia

On 26 November 2003 from Penang, Malaysia , trackback

The last days Bet and I have been travelling together. Because it was a religious holiday (end of ramadan) she got some days off from work. Our days have mainly be filled with some sightseeing, much eating and a lot of relaxing. On Sunday we went sightseeing in KL (Kuala Lumpur), where Chinatown offers some great shopping opportunities. In the afternoon we got on the bus to Penang, an island in the North of Malaysia. We stayed here for three days, sightseeing the city, a Chinese clan house, a large Buddhist temple, Penang Hill and the beach. But our pace was pretty low, because the temperature is always above 25 degrees with a very high humidity, making even minor exercise pretty tiresome.

After having spent a few days in Malaysia, I think it is time to write down the first impressions. First of all: the food is just great. For the ones who know my cooking: in this country they specialised in rice with chicken. And the great thing is that I usually do not spend more than 2 euro for a meal with drink. However, there is more to eat than rice and chicken, although most main meals are based on rice or noodles. There is also a great variety of fruits, with some tropical fruits being my new favourites. Because fruits are so cheap and widely available here, fruit juices are also much more common and often freshly made. With all this new and good food to try, I am eating much more than usual, and even quite a lot of fruit. I guess this should take away one of my mum’s main worries.

The other impression I made so far is that Malaysians and Singaporeans love shopping, because there are so many huge malls in this country. The first times I went to these malls I thought I was in the USA if it were not for the fact that everyone was Asian. A great number of shops and brands are American, or at least western. These malls made me really realise the uniqueness of Europe. It is strange to see all these protests against globalisation in Europe, while the old continent itself has still maintained much of it old ways of living, where other continents are much more affected by American culture. But enough about this, since it is supposed to be a travel log, not a political rant.

 

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