So This is Kuala Lumpur (Day 2)

31 Dec

November 18 – Friday –

(This is the 2nd installment of my story about my recent KL trip. Another long post. For Part 1, click here.)

(The night I arrived in LCCT, I  immediately said to F, “So This is KL…” and kept on saying how similar it is to the Philippines. The highway to the airport looks a lot like our NLEX highway. He said, ‘No, Not Yet. Wait till you get to the city center.” So I kind of expected something more and hoped that I won’t get disappointed.

We agreed to get up late, like 10am, but I was up as early as 8am. I showered, unpacked my bag and prepared for our first city tour in Malaysia. Although F arrived a few days before I did (he was already there by Monday) he hasn’t been around yet since he was waiting for me. He just went out to some malls nearby and attended the 3-day tech conference, which was the very reason he was there. By 10am he knocked on my door to wake me up and invite me for breakfast downstairs that the hostel provided. Well they just serve toast, coffee and tea until 11am everyday. But coffee and tea are unlimited. You can get it any time of the day. Wish it was brewed coffee though. LOL. Oh well as long as there is coffee I’ll be happy. 🙂

So I went down to join F for our late breakfast. It was just us, the empty reception area and the huge LCD TV near the dining table. The backpackers must have left early for the day tour I thought. There was no more toast so I settled for my usual black coffee and some banana bread which taste good.

About 2 weeks before our KL trip, F told me to look up for things to do and places to visit in KL since he was about to leave Turkey for Bangkok. But being too consumed of work and other things I only managed to download a PDF about the must-see places but never really read it. LOL. F thought that was brilliant! Hahaha… So instead, he grabbed a map from the reception and planned our itinerary for the day.  I kinda liked it that F was in charge of our daily itinerary and I just follow because in my normal world, I am always in charge. It was good to have someone leading me sometimes.

So as we were discussing our first stop, a guest came and rang the doorbell. He was early for the check-in time which is the usual 2pm, so he left his backpack in the storage and grabbed a cup to make his coffee and joined us in the breakfast table. Well looks like he was already a hostel’s guest before because some of the hostel’s staff recognized him.

He asked us if it was our first time in KL. I said yes and he recommended that we go up the KL Tower and the Twin Towers. F left to prepare his things so I had some more talks with the foreign guy about what to see around KL. Then we realized we haven’t introduced ourselves yet. I asked for his name.

“I’m Ennesy.”

“Ennesy?” I inquired.

“No. Yenessey” he clarified.

“Yenessey?” I thought I just heard a “y” sound

“No. Henessey” he said

“Oh, Henessey” I said. Finally. I thought I already had some hearing problem at this age. LOL.

“Where are you from?” I asked.

“From Germany.”  Right, that explains my hearing problem; it’s the accent thing I think.

“And your name?” he asked

“I am Y”

And to my surprised he said…

“Oh  _ _ _ _ _”

Wait. He knows my real first name? Ohhhhhhhhh

I didn’t bother to ask how he knew but what is he, a psychic or something? LOL Oh well, it’s probably my accent too. LOL. But really I don’t know how he got my name right when I gave him just my nickname (shortened name). Or did he just check out my name from the guest list? LOL.

“Where are you from?”

“Philippines” I answered.

We talked some more when some guests arrived either from the outside or from their bedrooms to the breakfast area so we sort of lost the topic. F’s ready too so it was also time for us to leave. It was Friday, so F told me he needs to go to the mosque by noon to pray before we could roam around the city.

So we stepped out to the cloudy skies of Bukit Bintang – famous as a shopping haven and for its night life, and just walking distance to some of KL’s famous landmarks. Yeah, we were at very strategic location! The sun wasn’t up and I could feel the humidity.  I was ready with my sunglasses, my cap and my red flat open-toed shoes for the day’s walk. Looking really like a tourist eh? 😛 So you could imagine a 5-ft tall woman wearing flats walking with an almost 6-ft tall man. I think I looked like a kid or worst a toy or a keychain! LOL. F holding this virtual map showed me where Masjid Jamek is located, that is where we were heading for his noon prayer. He told me the route we are taking, and said “Don’t worry, worst case scenario, we’ll take a taxi.” – which by the way became his favorite line every time we would go to places we haven’t been to.

Then just about 5 minutes later, without a warning, not even a hint, the rain poured down. Right! It’s raining in KL. We stopped for a while in front of some local shop. F said it’s been raining since he arrived, for at least 30-mins to an hour everyday. Bad KL. It’s my ‘first’ day and I’ve only walked a few steps and it already rained? Bad. Bad. Bad. F was teasing that maybe I am a jinx. Because first I missed my flight, then this time, it rained. (How dare you F!) LOL… And it looked like it was not going to stop anytime soon. I have an umbrella but I left it at the hostel. Well I didn’t know it would rain. F said maybe we could run in the rain to the next shop after all it wasn’t heavy, but he was kinda worried that I don’t have something to cover my head. I showed him my black “Manila Rocks” cap to assure him that I’ll be alright. The walk or run in the rain is cool I thought, after all it’s been years since I last played in the rain. 😛 He said I can go ahead and he’ll catch up as he will just run. (Yeah and one step for him is like 2-3 steps for me! LOL)  As I walked, I started to feel the water soaking my favorite red flat shoes… Noooooooooo!!! Eeeewww!!! I hate it when my feet get soaked in the rain. Eeeeewwww!!!! We walked some more… at least for 10-15 more minutes when the rain almost let up. But I couldn’t shake off the gross feeling because of my wet shoes. I was looking around the area, checking out if there are stores that sells flip flops so I can change but there was none. Had I known, I would have worn my flip flops instead of my favorite flats. And like a kid, I kept asking F “Are we there yet?” a few times because I really want to sit down and wipe my feet. At least 10 more minutes of walking, we finally reached Masjid Jamek. The rain has completely let up too.

Masjid Jamek

F said he will just pray for about 30-40 minutes and I can just wait for him inside the mosque. I asked if I will be allowed to get in especially that I am not a Muslim and that I am wearing jeans and short sleeves shirt. He said they may have something for non-Muslims to borrow and wear while inside. He also said that tourists are allowed inside the famous Blue Mosque in Istanbul to get in and take pictures as the Muslims pray, so it may be the same there.  As we were walking towards the opened gate, a man stopped us saying in his Malay accent that “only Male is allowed inside” F then inquired why. The man who seems to not understand much in English, called an older man who sells some religious things outside the gate. F greeted him with their usual “Salaam” greeting and he responded back. The man then looked at me and started talking in Malay! LOL. I couldn’t understand a thing! LOL. I knew it. I knew I could pass off as a Malaysian.  I apologized for not being able to understand him. He then told us in English that only male is allowed at that time. He said it’s Friday and it is usually jam-packed with male devotees even occupying the streets sometimes and women are not really encouraged to be there. F inquired about the time their prayer would start. We were told it won’t start until about 1 and a half hours. He asked where F is from and talked a little about Turkey, when he suddenly asked me…

“So where are you from?”

“From the Philippines” I answered.

“Oh Pangako Sa’yo!” he said while smiling.

I was surprised. I asked, “Oh you know that?!”

“Yes, of course. I watched it.”

LOL.  “Pangako Sa’Yo” (“Promise to You”) was a one of the famous Filipino soap opera from the late 90’s or early 2000 I think. I then realized that it indeed became famous in Malaysia as it was reported in the news back then. That was nice.

F then decided he’ll just go inside to take a few snaps while I waited for him outside. For a while I kind of felt scared. Probably because it is a foreign place, and most people in the area are men but then my Southeast Asian features is my advantage that no one would think of me as a foreigner, so that kind of kept me safe sitting outside the mosque’s gate.

After that F and I decided to take a walk around since their prayer won’t start soon. Then we saw this beautiful park with fountains and beautiful flowers. We sat for a while and rested while I frantically use our map as our improvised fan, because really, it is hot in KL, way hotter than Manila! I actually felt that as soon as I arrived in LCCT. F was telling me, ‘C’mon as if you’re not used to this kind of weather.’ I explained to him how it gets a little bit cold in Manila during this season.

It was already time for their prayer, so we hurried back to Masjid Jamek. Plus the rain was about to pour again. There was Burger King (which is by the way, our official fast food sponsor in KL, alongside McDonalds. LOL) nearby the mosque, so I opted to just stay there while I wait for him. Good thing there was a TV and the ongoing South East Asian Games was on so that kept me entertained for a while. I also called my dad and my sister.  Then I felt the need to write too to chronicle my first KL city tour. So I took out my journal and started writing, while it was raining cats and dogs outside.  About 40 minutes or so, F returned soaking wet due to the rain. Yeah, why do men think they are waterproof?  Good thing I have some tissue paper in my bag. Then we had our late lunch there at BK – Whooper meal for the tall man and Whopper Jr. for the 5ft tall lady. (I won’t say short woman, no!) LOL. I wasn’t able to eat the burger actually after I finished the fries, dunno, must be because it’s already a late lunch and I lost my appetite. I called mom to ‘report’ (LOL). Well I did promise her I will call her when I get there to assure her that I am safe. (There’s a story about that. Read here. ) I let her talked to F so she’d know I am in good hands. After that, he told me to finish up my soda that I barely sipped so we can get out BK. I told him I’m not really much into soft drinks so we can leave it there instead. And because he thought I was wasting money, he took my cup and finished my drink. It was good to know that he isn’t high maintenance  like me, LOL (Idy, I am not!). There was really no awkward moment.

We walked towards the famous Merdeka Square (Dataran Merdeka) or the ‘Independence Square’, where some of their interesting and historical landmarks are located, such as Sultan Abdul Samad Building built during the British occupation in the country which now houses the Ministry of Heritage, Culture and Arts, 95-meter high flag pole, the quasi-Tudor style Royal Selangor Club building and the huge green field where cricket matches are played, the Victorian fountain, the 1893 St. Mary’s Church, the National History Museum and the Kuala Lumpur City Gallery. So we took a few pictures. 🙂

Sultan Abdul Samad Building in Merdeka Square

The Victorian Fountain

World Under One Roof - 1 Malaysia

It was also the time I first had a sight of the tallest twin towers in the world – the Petronas Towers. It can be seen from the cricket field of Merdeka along with Menara or KL Tower.

Petronas Towers and KL Tower as seen from Merdeka Square

We were greeted “Selamat Datang” (meaning Welcome) by the staff as we went inside the KL City Gallery. We learned a bit of history of KL in their mini museum and took a few pictures inside including the miniature of Dataran Merdeka. That is also where they make the lovely (and expensive) ARCH souvenirs.

KL City Gallery

Inside KL City Gallery

KL

Miniature of Masjid Jamek inside the KL City Gallery

Merdeka Square miniature

ARCH

The lovely but expensive Notebooks by the ARCH

As we headed to the exit door, the friendly staff thanked us for visiting but I went back to her to ask how to say ‘thank you’ in their language –

“Terima Kasih” she said.

We then took a few more pictures outside and headed to St. Mary’s Church. There was a wedding the next day so there were people decorating the church with beautiful flowers.

inside St. Mary's Church

Inside St. Mary's Church

After that, F and I decided to go back to the hostel, rest for a while and we’ll just go out at night. We traversed the same route we did in the morning. It was fun walking since I don’t get to do it a lot in Manila. Upon reaching our hostel in Bukit Bintang, we were greeted by a number of girls working in the massage parlor occupying the 1st floor of the hostel building. LOL. They were either sitting or standing outside of the building offering ‘massage service’ to the passersby, well MALE passersby I observed. F told me during his first few days, the girls were actually asking him to have some massage but as he consistently said NO, they stopped bugging him.

F decided to take an afternoon nap while I showered because I want rid of the gross feeling due to my shoes that was soaked in the rain. Then, alone, I went out to the nearby 7-11 store to buy some bottled water. The cashier, like the old man from the mosque talked to me in Malay too. LOL. The 2nd time in the day that I was mistaken as a local. She apologized and quickly told me in English how much I owe and then inquired where I am from.

I was acting brave as I walked to the hostel because I noticed how some local men (mostly Malaysian-Indians) were looking at me. Seriously, what’s with me and Indian men? I experienced the same thing while I was in SG last year. Some even bravely said hello and asked for my name. And it didn’t happen just once in KL.

They have a late sunset there because at 7pm it was still bright outside. By 8pm F decided that he’ll take me to the Pavilion mall which is just 2 blocks away from our Hostel. He told me there are huge Christmas trees inside and I will love it there. And indeed I loved the Christmas Wonderland theme of Pavilion mall. However, as F showed me the stores, he noticed I wasn’t that excited, he wondered why. Women loves to shop (I am an exemption. I only shop when I need to) and he thought I would beam with excitement to be in huge shopping mall. I told him, how many malls we have in Manila and how huge they are too. Plus we almost got the same stores – Prada, Gucci, Nine West, Charles and Keith and the like. What I want to see are local shops, where I can buy things I can’t get at home. Oh but there is one store that I liked – TYPO. They sell awesome journals, notebooks, cute pens, stationary and some home and office decors. There is this particular journal that I loved that says “This is my BLOG” in the cover, but unfortunately, it has damage and they got no more stock. Sadness.

Chistmas Wonderland inside the Pavilion

Christmas Wonderland in Pavilion

Outside the Pavilion Mall - (are other malls!)

But what I enjoyed more in Pavilion were the gigantic Christmas trees. I was a like a kid when we went  near them and took a few pictures. F took some shots of kids in the magical carousel as he just found the Chinese-looking kids so cute especially when they smile. Then we thought we should take picture of us together. He asked me for his tripod that he put in my bag the morning we went out, but I left it at the hostel when we left for Pavilion. So we tried taking a picture with him holding his camera but since I am so tall and he is so short (LOL), we can’t take a proper picture. LOL. It’s either he will kneel down so we are parallel or I will stand on some platform. Well good thing there was someone nice enough to take our picture together. And that picture sparked some controversies at home and in my circle of friends. It was the same picture that Idy wants to send to F’s gf to blackmail me and F. LOL. (Idy, I have an evidence where my other hand is – look at the reflections on the Christmas balls!)

After a few more pictures, we decided to go back to back to the hostel. On our way, we grabbed some snacks from 7-11 for our ‘healthy dinner’ (chips, peanuts, chocolate, Sprite and the instant Asian noodles that I made him eat. 😛 It was his first time to eat instant noodles he said. Good thing I got the vegetable flavor for him because he is somewhat a vegetarian. In fairness, I loved their instant noodles, quite different from what we have back home. We stayed in my room for our so-called dinner while we chatted to Idy. He told him that he took me to the Pavilion but complained that I didn’t enjoy the mall. Hahaha… I did enjoy the Christmas trees. But both of them were happy to know that I don’t like shopping too much. Men and shopping! F then showed me the lovely necklace and bracelet that he purchased for his gf. I especially loved the bracelet. So posh. 🙂

My hostel room

View from my Hostel window - the Monorail (Bukit Bintang station) and Lot 10, one of the malls in their shopping district

I also told F the bad dream that my mother had a few days before my KL flight, the reason she was uneasy about me going to KL and the same reason of our argument.  The dream was, I am in the room of some 3rd floor building (and coincidentally, I am staying in the 3rd floor of the hostel!) and in the next building adjacent to where I was, were two really really tall and dark men looking at me through their window.  In her dream, I was calling ‘MOM! MOM!’, as if I was so scared and asking for a rescue. Mom came to the room where I was and told me to go down, while she kept telling those two men, “You are liars! You are liars!” We actually heard mom talked that night while asleep, so my dad woke her up. Upon hearing the story, F said trying to scare me,

“Well I am a tall guy, that could be me.”

I answered, “Yeah I am so scared of you. And I can just kick you in the ass right now!”

LOL.

After some more stories, we called it a night and said our good nights.

More stories on my ‘third day.” 🙂

###

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8 Responses to “So This is Kuala Lumpur (Day 2)”

  1. Addie January 4, 2012 at 4:50 pm #

    “Right! It’s raining in KL.” – This made me LOL. Who would’ve thought? Haha.
    Gosh, it felt like I traveled with you, like I was with you when all this happened. I’m hitting Penang soon with friends. Can’t wait.

    Also can’t wait to read the 3rd installment.

    • Y January 6, 2012 at 1:03 am #

      LOL. Addie, I actually forgot to include the other details of the 2nd day, I just remember some of them today. lol… Thanks! Will write about day 3 soon. 🙂

      When are you going to Penang? Will you be visiting KL too? We wanted to go to Penang and Malacca but we didn’t have much time. Well hopefully next time I go to MY. I hope you enjoy your trip. 🙂

      • Addie January 6, 2012 at 4:37 pm #

        March or April. Idk. My friend’s call.
        Wishful thinking: to travel with you 😉

  2. Y January 9, 2012 at 12:30 am #

    Nice. Is it going to be your first international trip or you’ve been somewhere before? Well hope you enjoy.

    And to travel together, why not. Who knows we can do that someday. 🙂

    • Addie January 9, 2012 at 1:26 am #

      First time. Fingers crossed. I am more thrilled to go to Thailand or Cambodia, though. Sadly, nobody from around me are interested.

      • Y January 9, 2012 at 2:10 am #

        I would love to go to Thailand and Cambodia too! I want to see Arkor Wat! 😀

        Well once you started traveling, you’ll get addicted. 🙂 I like traveling and being on a plane excites me 🙂

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. 10 Significant Things of My 2011 – A Year In Review « Y Writes Whatever! - January 1, 2012

    […] Touring KL – This one I think is one of the highlights this year. I can now cross from my bucket list that I […]

  2. Parks, Museums and Petronas! (KL Trip Day 3) Part 1 of 2 « Y Writes Whatever! - February 19, 2012

    […] guy (Pat), a Malaysian bloke and an Aussie woman. I met the Filipino staff, Neldie the morning of Friday (Day 2) when F introduced her to me. Then later that day, we found out that there is another Filipino staff […]

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