Since posting last I journeyed to London and back, literally so I could make the tiniest of errands to the Brent Park Post Office to pick up my Biometric Resident Permit (BRP). As ridiculous as the experience was (explaining to my Grab driver while en route to the Kuala Lumpur airport that I was flying to London for two days to then fly all the way back really did make me feel quite embarrassed and privileged), it now means I can *finally* legally live and work in the UK! Tash, Katie and Kim were the best hosts during my brief touchdown, and their generous hospitality (read: cooking of lots of delicious food) pushed me through the jetlag until I made it back to Kuala Lumpur to rejoin Dom for the last bit of our travels!
After one final day of rest in Kuala Lumpur, we took the train out of the city and to the final Malaysian stop of our travels: Langkawi Island. Langkawi is an island (actually an archipelago of 99 islands) in the north part of Malaysia sitting in the Andaman Sea. After our train we took a car to the ferry, at which point everyone was giddy to tell us just the day before a ferry to the island went up in flames. (Don’t worry, everyone was rescued on that one! And ours was just fine!) We sat behind two Europeans who had retired to Langkawi; they had just finished their shopping at Tesco on the mainland and were most excited about the giant ham they had purchased (they sadly didn’t offer any to Dom).
Before my brief detour to London I had envisioned packing our days full on the island, venturing into the rain forest and hiking up waterfalls. After said detour I actually had quite the nasty cold (the left side of my face wouldn’t stop drooping), so I’ve been rather content spending the last three days hopping between the beach, the hostel and “our” restaurant, sweating away my cold as best I can.
While the beach is beautiful here, I’ve been too scared to venture in because jellyfish also seem to find it quite beautiful. We therefore splurged our first day and bought a day pass to one of the many resorts on the island, allowing us access to their pool and lounge chairs. I enjoyed the pool quite a bit, but the thumping music did make it a bit hard to read. We’re definitely not the “cool hip” travelers, but I really want to make a beach resort and advertise the fact that it doesn’t have any music playing…
Even though it’s extremely hot and humid here, I immediately noticed that we finally found a place in Malaysia with proper sidewalks and I couldn’t let those go to waste! So with a sniffly nose I set out Thursday morning for a slow jog along the street and also ran a bit along the beach. I really want every other city government to send a representative to Langkawi so they can observe what sidewalks look like and experience just how much they increase the quality of life. Honestly, these sidewalks are my favorite part of Langkawi. I really am an easy gal to please.
After my run we headed to our place for brunch, more widely known as Grill & Chill. We happened upon the cafe our first evening and have since been back for both breakfasts we’ve had in town and one more dinner. Their roti canai with potato masala is heavenly and just seven ringets ($1.75)! Amusingly, a rather ragged European couple also seemed to fall in love with Grill & Chill and Dom and I are convinced they’re on the run…case in point:
After learning from our mistakes from the day before, we found lounge chairs on the beach this time without blaring music in the background. Although the heat definitely did win out and ultimately led us back to our hostel to clean up for dinner (at Grill and Chill, obvs), it really is relaxing to sit on the beach and read.
I’ve enjoyed our time in Malaysia but am excited to venture on to Thailand tomorrow!