Penang, Cameron Highlands, Kuala Lumpar

Left the hotel at 6.15 in the morning and had to change minibuses after a couple of hours. The second one took us to the border where we crossed into Malaysia. Carried on down to Butterworth, to get the ferry across to Penang. Quite a dodgy area, not somewhere you want to be out alone at night. Didnt arrive till 6.00. Went to a Dim Sum restuarant but didnt like it at all!

Next morning, went to a small cafe for breakfast where they served fresh bread. Then decided to go up to Penang Hill. Had to get 2 buses to get there and a very helpful woman on the bus told us where to get off the first one. From the bottom of the hill, you get a cable car up to the top. We had to wait an hour and a quarter for the next one and there was nothing else to do there to keep amused. Luckily, Hazel managed to change the combination on her padlock so spent half an hour working out what she’d changed it to! The train then took half an hour to get to the top and we had to change half way. From the top you could see out over Goergetown. Wasnt really much else to do up there. We did a canopy walk, which took us 20mins to walk to and about 5 to complete. Met some of the boys at top and headed back down.

Decided we’d had enough of local food so went to Pizza Hut for dinner. Youll be pleased to hear the standards are no better over here. Despite having menus and order forms only in English, and pointing to what we wanted on the menu it still took 3 people to order one “create you own topping” pizza. We just put it down to another “experience”. Went to an Irish Bar in the evening for one of the lads birthdays – drinks were supposedly free for ladies. However, on closer inspection only “girlie drinks” (ie vodka, rum, gin, whiskey) were free. Not much good when you dont like any of them and only drink pints! Then we headed on to a local club. Again, an “experience”. Think we were the only Westerners in there, but we sure showed them how to have a good time and how to dance.

Next day, after 2 and a half hours sleep, we went to the Cameron Highlands. Much cooler there as its so far above sea level. Found a great little cafe that served scones with jam and cream and apple pie with ice cream.

Yesterday, we did a tour of the Highlands. This consisted of a Buddhist Temple, a rose garden, strawberry farm, butterfly farm, tea plantation, honey bee farm and a market. Most places you got to try the produce – not that great when you dont like tea or honey! Spent the afternoon caddying for 2 of the boys round the local golf course. Was actually quite funny because, despite them telling us how great they were, they were pretty rubbish. Managed to get expenses and 2 drinks out of them as payment. It would have been cheaper for them to get a proper caddy!

Arrived in Kuala Lumpar this afternoon. Would have been here earlier but the bus broke down about an hour into the journey so we didnt move for an hour. Eventually it got started again after being towed a short distance by a cement mixer! We got here in the middle of a tropical storm, but apparently it happens every day and they only last an hour. Going to have a look round the shops now.

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