One last day in South East Asia.

We woke up on Koh Phi Phi an hour late, for the first time both of us sleeping through two alarms. We mobilized quickly and in 10 minutes were packed up and out the door to catch our boat to Kuala Lumpur. We had hoped for a good breakfast and some solid wi-fi time before the 22 hour journey ahead… not meant to be.

We had a relatively painless boat to the mainland and bus to the Thai border town, until we boarded the small bus to the Malaysia boarder. About two minutes into the trip, we realized we had left our iPod charging in the wall of the travel agency. &#%!!  Amazingly, the driver was very friendly (for what felt like the first time in Southern Thailand) and our iPod was delivered to our van by a motorbike two minutes later.  Huzzah.

We then boarded a large charter bus for the overnight trip to KL.  As soon as the bus started we knew it was going to be a long ride- the bus was about the temperature of Siberia and despite pleading the bus driver to turn the AC down, it just wasn’t happening.  Sleeping pills were a life saver- we were too sleepy to get too upset/cold and managed to squeeze in a few zzs. We arrived into KL at about 4:30am and stumbled around Chinatown with our two new English friends, Chris and Phil, finding a total dump for 40 ringits (about $13- KL is expensive!) which worked to pass out and start a new day fresh(ish).

KL is a big food city and for one day we were determined to try as much of it as possible. Down a narrow alley near Chinatown lined with food stalls and packed with locals, we found our lunch spot.  Picking a table at what looked like the busiest stall, we asked the guy sitting at our table how we should order- he politely suggested he order for us.  Shortly after, fantastic noodles and wonton soup arrived at our table which we enjoyed while chatting with our new friend about his job, football, and life in Malaysia. He insisted on paying for our lunch to welcome us to KL.

We had a great day touring, eating, and shopping. We met the English boys for dinner at a recommended streetside restaurant. After a good meal, we were to meet some expats we met on Koh Phi Phi for a beer at a pub close to the restaurant. No problem, right? So wrong.

We spent about 45 minutes looking for the right street, and decided it would just be faster to get a cab there. Mistake. After a 15 minute circle tour of the city, we finally ask our cab driver where we were going. He then pretends he doesn’t speak English (funny, he was speaking just fine five minutes before…) We convince him to pull over and insist that we’re not paying for his unofficial and unwanted city tour, and walk away.

5 minutes later realize- $%&! – we’ve left our iPod that we were using for a map in the cab.

We quickly headed back to the place we left the cab, and upon finding the driver still there, Cami realized he had no idea about the iPod – and we should leave it that way. We told him we’d pay him a fair price if he took us where we were going, and got back in the cab. Reunited with the iPod- phew!

He STILL didn’t take us to the right place but we cut our losses and got out. We hailed another cab to take us back into the area we needed- and just guess what he did.

We vowed never to take a cab in KL again. Well, until the next morning, when we were late for our bus. But our third and final driver was lovely- turns out his wife is a racewalker on the Malaysian National Team. He apologized for our cab difficulties, and delivered us to our bus in the nick of time.

Off to India we go.

-from Claudia

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