Alright, I just finished an arduous trek from Krabi Town, Thailand to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Ok, it wasn’t arduous at all, actually quite enjoyable. I packed my things and caught a bus, next thing you know it’s filling with interesting characters from around the globe.
The trip costs 900 baht and takes ~15 hours, the guy asked me what the lady quoted me at, I said 800 with a smile, he said 850, the trip was booked. I rode in a minibus for hours until I got to Hat Yai, Thailand, there everyone got out and it was just me and the driver, we drove and then he dropped me off. I sat in some office for 30 minutes until another bus came in the pouring rain, at this point I had left the “traveling rat race” and it was just me and people who call this place home.
Before we dropped everyone off, I had the pleasure of chatting with some ladies from Sweden and Ireland. It was pleasant until this guy came in the last seat between us and he wreaked of body odor. To make maters worse he sat with his arms open, the smell could only be described as “rotten onion”. I had the displeasure of having a kid with bed bugs sitting next to my luggage. We’ll see what happens there. I thought I’d be on another skidly (sic) bus like the one from Bangkok, I was wrong and the trip was much more pleasant and safer than say for these people below. Notice how they are all smiling though?
Left Hat Tai, I’ll mention now I had ~50 baht total left in Thai Currency, I did not want to hit up a machine and having lived like a gluttonous king for the last month, I thought it would build character to see how others, less fortunate live.
I get to the border and I’m kinda nervous as I’m a scruffy burnt out traveler, I get to the booth and the guy looks at me, looks at my passport and points to the customs office, at this point I got a little stressed. Last thing you want is trouble at the Thai border, yes?
I get in and they say I’ve overstayed my welcome in Thailand, turns out I came in 2 days earlier than I had thought I did and my visa had effectively expired the day before. I do the math with the lady over and over again and yeah, I was due to pay an “over stay” fee. The fee is 500 baht a day or ~$17US. I only had 30 baht at this point so I had to walk through this jungle of kiosks to a sketchy bank machine and withdraw some cash. I paid the fine and went to the Malaysian Border. At the border the guy gave me a 90 day visa, I thought we only got 30 day visas? I’m not complaining. After that they have these X-ray machines, they just let me walk right through.
Arrived in Pennang, Malaysia at about 8PM, again I was the only guy on the mini bus when we got there. I immediately ran into the driver of the next bus, a large coach. He was super cool and answered all my questions.
At about 2AM local time, I arrived in Kuala Lumpur, the driver just pulled over and this was my stop, in the middle of some street, not many people around except an army of over zealous taxi cab drivers. The driver explained to walk straight for ~500M then pick a hotel.
I did as told, telling many cab drivers “no thank you” and arrived at a hotel, the hotel didn’t have much but it would do. Found a place that wanted 45 ringgit a night. $1US is ~3ringgit. I told him it was already 2 am and if he had a room I’d take it at a discount, we bargained and came to the price of 30 ringit or ~10US, perfect. This is why I did this trip, rolling into strange cities at random hours, not knowing anything or where to go, it’s exhilarating, it makes you feel alive and most certainly, grows your “comfort zone”.
The room was no frills but it did have a clean bed and a window. I dropped off my stuff and went for a walk. Before checking in I ran into this guy who said the party district is near so I went to check it out, along the way I saw so many police, pulling over motorists, I kept walking, finally I realized I had no clue where it was, it was 2 am and I was dead tired. I retired.
Woke up a few hours later and immediately went looking for another place, you see I need wifi, internet is my insulin. Found a place for 50 ringgit a night or ~$16.666 a night, that’s ~$500 a month, awesome. This place is clean(except for the chair), I have a window, it’s got air con and free wifi on a secure network 24/7, heavenly.
Next to it, they have a dinner where it’s like a buffet, you take as much as you want, I eat like a king and had a can of lipton green tea for 13 ringit or ~ $4.33US. They are most certainly going to get to know this gentleman. Next up, I found a plug adapter for ~3US and am buying a sim card which is incredibly cheap.
So far, I absolutely love Kuala Lumpur, the place is incredibly clean, so much so that I always look for a place to properly discard my cigarettes, also there are police everywhere, constantly writing up fines. I have yet to walk anywhere that I can’t see a police officer, the place is very safe feeling and the majority of the people speak English. That being said, this is NOT the place to act the fool, seriously.
In short, I plan on staying here for ~1 month or until New Years depending on what some friends in other cities are doing. This place is perfect for me to relax, work on the internet, live for ~$30 a day and get caught up on what I love, making passive income streams and investing in equities.
Thailand was great fun and I’m truly glad I had a 1 month tear there, the people I met I’m sure I’ll stay in touch with for years to come. I mean if I had the opportunity to start it over again and see where it led me, I wouldn’t. I couldn’t of asked for a better month, partying and traveling with better people. I have so many great memories from Thailand but it’s good to be back to myself, someone who likes to just hang out, play on the web and live like a king on the cheap. So many people said to skip Malaysia, I’m glad I don’t listen to most people.
I’m exhausted and totally burnt out, I’m going to take a day nap, eat some curry and then do whatever I please.
P.S So many people read up on where to stay, where to visit and miss the most important part! Who cares about the tourist traps or a guy who paid the author to include his hotel in a book, learn PROPER ETIQUETTE and the rest falls into place.
P.P.S The more I travel, the more I realize what I need in life, I love having a little room, with wifi and total freedom. That’s what’s important to this gentleman. When I had a 3 bedroom home, I still spent 95% of my waking time in the smallest room in the home, my office.
Update: Gotta love Facebook, yes? A lady I met from England in Thailand is also in KL, meeting for drinks later. Those who did these treks before the internet missed out on a ridiculous number of possible connections and reconnections.