This comes to me as a proper ode to serendipity. One of those moments of “buy the ticket, take the ride”…and never refuse an invitation. (At least a genuine one). Coming out of my Angkor stupor, I was surprised and warmed by an invite from the high king of prawn himself (see the Singapore prawn battle post) to join him and his lovely wife in Kuala Lumpur on this trek. I don’t travel with much of an itinerary, for exactly reasons like this.
a few days in KL? Why not?!
So off to this mega city I went.
Meeting with a local completely changes the nature of an excursion. You see elements of neighborhoods and cities that simply won’t happen from a hotel/hostel. Thank the gods my gracious hosts and I share a deep seated love of street food. The plastic table, chili sauce, Asian love variety especially. We quickly bonded over cold tiger beer and fish parts.
Kuala Lumpur is quite the eclectic mix of new and old wave migration. This city shows this at every layer, from the people on the bus to the wide range of ethnic eateries seemingly everywhere.
This city loves to SHOP, and to EAT. Malls may be dying in the states, but are booming here in the Malaysian capital.
Not one for malls, of course this left me with the option closest to my heart…the food! Kuala Lumpur, despite being a Muslim City, has divided the fun into “eating street” and “drinking street”.
Bring on the pork!!
I came to KL with next to no expectation, on a friendly invite. What I encountered…an incredible swirl of culture, and food. Americans especially would benefit tremendously from stepping out of that comfort zone and hitting South East Asia.
A non stop mix of everything awesome. A night of absolute gastronomic debauchery. It proved quite a change to go on auto pilot for a bit. Friends here knew where to go and how to get there. I was able to relax and enjoy. From roof top beers to a sultry mix of flavors on the streets below.
KL is seemingly constantly building, rising, expanding. You can feel this vibe, or pulse through the entire place. The traffic can be brutal. Once you exhaust yourself of meat sticks and cold beer (blasphemy I know) the time has come to retreat to the highlands that ring the city. The cable cars will take you to what is now the worlds largest hotel at 5000 + rooms. The malls and shopping centers are optional, as the cooler temps and the view are what makes this a necessity.
Something about temples and rain forest in the mist…just adds that exact eastern exotic feel you’ve been looking for. Spend a day here, and enjoy.
I would never thought to cone here, or that this really existed had it not been for friends. The unexpected can be the absolute best. As I mentioned in an earlier post, this entire excursion was built with the help of friends. From Grand Rapids, to Chicago, now Kuala Lumpur and beyond. This inspires a humble smile, as none of us can go it alone. Get up, get out there, remember to check your ego at the door, don’t be an asshole and enjoy. You will marvel every single day at how amazing this world and it’s people can be.
Or crush another bag of chips from the couch and talk shit on Facebook. Your call.
I thought for sure I was headed to Laos after this…but as with all things, this has changed. I hope you’re ready for the next jump after this altogether awesome stop in Kuala Lumpur! We are in for a surprise.
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