HSBC Everywhere! :-)
…or so their tourism commercials say. Well, I haven’t been here long enough to confirm that, but I can say that it is definitely Asia, and I am truly happy to be back. I was just chatting with a friend online last night and I said something without even thinking about it…but I thought about it a lot last night and have come to believe it is true. I have come to the conclusion that different places on Earth have different energy, and this energy mixes with different people in different ways. I know, this might sound a little Lisa or my Mom talking…but it’s true. I have found that in SE Asia I feel the most alive. I am full of energy and I get up early in the morning. I want to see and do everything. I am more outgoing, more talkative, and just more alive. I think this is because there is some energy in this place that just mixes well with me. On the flipside, I think there are places where the energy can be negative. For me these are places like Peru, India, and Australia, for some reason those places sucked the life
View of city and Petrona Towers from KL Tower
out of me. They made me tired, irritable, and a little negative. Africa and Costa Rica are other places that I feel good. This energy depends on the person. I have met people in SE Asia who love India so much and just can’t wait to get back there and other people who swear South America is the best place on Earth. Nobody is right and nobody is wrong. I don’t think any one place is better than any other place. I just think it’s all about how that place makes you feel...
Anyway, that’s my new age mumbo jumbo thought of the day.
I am in Kuala Lumpur and I love it. KL is actually quite small compared to a lot of Asian cities and it has been pretty easy to explore on foot. Since I am gradually going broke I have decided to become a DIY (Do It Yourself) traveler for a bit. Trying to stay away from paying for tours, taxis, and that kind of stuff. So I got up early this morning to set out and try to see the sites I missed yesterday. It was a great day. I started by walking though China
Town (the area I am staying in) and checked out the Masjid Jamek mosque…then across town to Lake Gardens where Masjid Negara, the National Mosque, is located. By this time I was dripping with sweat. It’s not that hot…but with the humidity it is a killer. I felt bad putting on the robe to cover my legs to enter the mosque…but by being very careful I didn’t sweat into the loaner too bad ;-). I could only walk around the outskirt of the mosque and was not allowed inside because I am not Muslim. Pretty amazing building…but what was even more impressive was the Islamic Art Museum. I don’t know why, but I was enthralled with everything in there. They had scale models of all the world famous mosques…the Blue Mosque in Turkey, Taj Mahal in India, and of course Mecca in Saudi Arabia, which I would love to see! I really want to look into a trip to the Middle East. I am so intrigued by the culture. I have met people who have traveled there and it sounds doable, you just stick to Syria, Jordan, Egypt, and Israel…or do Central Asia and the ‘Stans.
After Lake Gardens
I went over to the Petronas Towers, the 2nd tallest building in the world. There is the KLCC shopping center next door, which is overwhelming. Picture the biggest US shopping mall and multiply that by about 4 and you’ll have some idea. I know this isn’t politically correct to say, but it was different to see all the Muslim women and kids all over the mall in tradional Muslim dress, some in full burkas. I don’t know why this is weird to me…I guess it’s just the contrast of all these Western stores McDonalds, Chili’s, TGI Fridays, Fossil, Billabong, etc and what I associate with Middle Eastern dress. Anyway, there’s the paragraph that’s going to get me slammed from people all over!
I can’t claim to know anything about Malaysia yet, but so far I think it’s a great country. KL is amazingly clean and well run. All the street and major sites have road makers with directions and distances. The people are amazingly helpful. You can walk up to anyone on the road and they will go out of their way to help you out. Customs were a breeze and they give you a 90-day visa with no
I got in trouble right after this, I didn't know we couldn't take pictures.
questions asked. I have also met a girl here through this blog who has offered to give me a lift up north this weekend. Unfortunately I already bought a bus ticket for tomorrow…but still, it’s a perfect example of the positive experience I am having here. Great place. It’s a very modern country with a lot of Western influence (see the mall paragraph), yet the people have seemed to figured out the delicate balance of embracing the Western influence without losing their own culture. In other words eating KFC and McDonalds without losing their souls.
Pictures Up: Just Click on Links Taiwan Thailand Laos Vietnam
Australia - coming later
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