Published: March 5th 2008March 6th 2008
Us and Melanie
I have no idea why we are crouching down??
In case you hadn’t already figured, we have not sent the same blog twice; instead we have edited it with the full story and some photos. We know some of you find this blogging business a tad confusing, but really it is quite simple as long as you read the dates and location header, it follows chronologically.
We thought we would write a quick blog just to let you know what we got up to on the 6th March, Stuey’s 30th. It didn’t start in the best way possible due to the lingering stomach bug issue. He really wasn’t a happy chappy, and anyone that knows Stu will know he doesn’t handle illness well at all. Much grumpiness followed. But really he was on the mend, I gave my best reassurance.
We started off the day with breakfast at the birthday boy’s choice of eatery- ‘DeliFrance’, for that truly Asian experience. Then we had a wander into the Quiksilver shop (yes they even had one of those - despite the island having very little in the way of surf) in order to buy ‘the ultimate’ a watch that tells the tide times, as a pressie. Of course, he didn’t realise it was made by Rip Curl at that point! So we came away a little disappointed, but financially better off. Oh well, the present would have to wait until we reached Bali, a new surf board was on the cards…
It was another typical day in KK, hot and sticky with intermittent tropical downpours. KK isn’t a pretty place. It’s a concrete jungle of uninspiring buildings. Modern shopping malls mixed with dirty market places. I must say however, that the marine park islands off shore are undoubtedly beautiful, and an attraction in themselves.
We wandered along the harbour and through the markets, it smelt rough, like Shanghai at low tide (thanks stu). We ate ice cream and generally had a lazy day. (We were ignoring the fact that we were supposed to be training our bodies for the gruelling mountain climb ahead!) Stu choose the only Western restaurant in town for an early dinner. I looked longingly at the local curries and spicy delights, but it was his day. We headed out for a few drinks in the evening. KK is a Muslim town and has few tourists, as a result the bars were usually pretty empty. Saying that it was noticed there were a few more dodgy establishments dotted around….that had a steady clientele of drinking men…
We chose a bar that was playing football on a big screen and had pool tables, yippee I thought! But it was the birthday boy’s choice. After a few beers, a chat to the locals and a few games of pool we were given a little surprise, a live band. Now you all know the Smith boys cannot resist a live band, no matter how awful they are. The Malaysians aren’t really known as great pop singers, and this band was no exception. A Philipino lady fronted, backed by 2 middle aged Malaysian men. In local accents, they knocked out such classics as ‘Hotel California’, ‘Coward of the County’ (only mums will know that one!), and a few Mariah Carey killers. But after a few of the local brew, they sounded great. By the time they reached 4 non blonds ‘what’s going on?’ Stu was the loudest singer in the place. Just a note to remind you here, there was an audience of maybe 10 people max. We clapped encouragingly (out of embarrassment of course, rather than enjoyment, honest) Anyway, it turns out that the lady singer, took this as a sign that we were her greatest fans. Next thing we know Melanie has joined us for a drink and we have her life story, how she thought she could never really sing, and how she just filled in for her friend one night, and the rest was history. We didn’t have the heart to break her confidence. We did the decent thing and told her she was great and bought her a drink.
After the interval the band played on, we had a special dedication to Stuart on his 30th and the crowd (kinda) all sang Happy Birthday - how nice?
A bit embarrassing, but fun all the same. We ended the night feeling content.