For the majority of the workers in Malaysia this past weekend was a 3 day weekend to celebrate Malaysia’s Labor Day.
Saturday afternoon Alex’s (our driver) family drove from KL to Lumut to see him. He doesn’t have the opportunity to see his wife and kids as often as he would like since he works so far from home. We (worker bees) offered to let him spend time with his parents and family, but he asked that we join them for dinner. Alex’s dad treated us to the best fish I’ve had since moving to Malaysia. We were also introduced to coconut alcohol. The tradition is to drink it mixed with a Guinness beer, I passed on the beer, but tried the coconut mix, and it was very light and refreshing. I seriously doubt there is any alcohol in the coconut part, it must be in the beer. While eating dinner a local bee keeper was selling local honey. Alex’s dad bought each of us a bottle. It has a very light taste and I’m told it will help with any allergy you develop from this region. I now understand where Alex gets his generous spirit. He and his father are so much alike, it was a pleasure to meet him.
Sunday we took a ferry over to Pulau (Island) Pangkor to discover Paradise. I’m told this is where many expats go to vacation when they have a few days off. I understand why, this island is so far removed from what we see daily on the mainland. Here we found lush green forest and beautiful water. For transportation our options were, rent a scooter, rent a car, or take a taxi to tour the island. Since there were several of us the decision was to rent a car, with one couple optioning for the scooter (I’m doing that next time). Rental cars in Paradise aren’t quite the same quality as the rental cars in America. Our little rental was barely running when we got it, the transmission slipped constantly, the air conditioner blew luke warm air, the seats had holes and we had a cassette player for our entertainment, darn we left all our cassettes in the 80’s. With the transmission slipping every time we took a small hill we thought we were going to have to push our little car to our destinations. We finally made it to the other side of the island and rented a boat to island hop. This boat tour was worth the ride in the little car that brought us here, it was truly paradise on the water. The guide showed us a rock formation that looked like a whale, water spout shooting out a tree. Another looked like a cobra, and one looked like a crocodile merging from the water.
Much to my excitement I thought I found a miniature golf area. I was so excited I couldn’t wait to share this information with John, my four-year old grandson, that excitement died away as quick as it came, the miniature golf course was a Buddhist temple. To look at it you would think it was a children’s area with all the colors and Disney’s character. One of our final stops was a resort where many folks chose to vacation. I would have opted to stay longer, but then there was the gentleman with a bright green speedo walking around. Whew…. I’ll have to rethink staying here.
Once back on shore we piled back into our luxury rental, and completed our tour of the island. I can assure you San Francisco’s Lombard Street is child’s play compared to the roads on Pulau Pangkor. It was amazing and scary at the same time. At one point some monkeys came out of the trees and being tourist we all pulled out our cameras, they posed, or more like stared at all the weird people with cameras taking their pictures.
After our long day we boarded the ferry and returned to back to our reality, which included a warm shower, and a long nap because, tomorrow starts another wonderful week in Mountasia.