Friday, September 25, 2009

Selamat Siang

...means “Good Day” in Malay, which forms the basis for Bahasa Malaysia. Interestingly enough, it is most commonly written using the Latin alphabet.

Why am I talking about the Malay language? Well, last week I joined some friends on a short trip to Malaysia. Short, because it was only for 3 1/2 days. The main reason for the trip was that a friend was attending her convocation from RMIT, and it was decided to make it a holiday as well. Hey, you live only once, so might as well take every opportunity to see how the rest of the world lives.

There’s a homely feeling there since environment and climate wise, Malaysia is like Sri Lanka. The main difference being the level of development they have achieved. It is a glimpse of what Sri Lanka can become. The other nice thing is the level of cleanliness. That is something I really wish we have, more than even development.

The Kuala Lampur International Airport is situated in a district called Sepang, about 50km from KL city. The whole area is covered with Palm plantations, which at first I thought were Coconuts. Apparently Palm oil is the second biggest export after petroleum. From above it basically looks like somebody took a strip out of a green carpet so that planes can land. The airport has two terminals, where the main one houses immigration, customs and etc, and to get from one terminal to the other, there is a pair of automated trains.

KL city is basically a concrete jungle, but it doesn’t feel like it because there are lot of trees. Somehow they’ve managed to create a balance between the concrete and natural greenery.

The Corus Hotel in which we stayed is right smack in the middle of the city and just a few buildings away from the famous Petronas twin towers. Unfortunately we kept putting off visiting the towers till the last moment, only to find out on Saturday that it was closed during that weekend because of the festival. So we missed the chance to go up to the sky-bridge. Tough luck I’d say.

There are more than enough shopping malls in the city to keep the shopaholics in a permanent state of ecstasy. The largest one we went to was the Times Square Mall. It has about 12 floors with about 100 shops in each floor. You do the math on that one. Most of them are designer clothes and fashion accessories. Seriously, once you go inside, you don’t feel the time moving. Have you noticed that most malls are built in a way that you don’t see the outside when you are in? When you don’t see the daylight changing, you feel like time has stopped. It’s a sneaky, clever way to keep the shoppers inside. Because of the festival season, all the shops were having some sort of sale. Otherwise, I don’t think the prices are that cheap. Food on the other hand is quite cheap, and tasty.

Being huge wasn’t enough for the Time Square mall people. They wanted more excitement, so why not put an amusement park inside it. Yep, it has an amusement park, complete with thrill rides and a twisting, looping roller coaster. It was my first time on a roller coaster and it was scary yet exciting. I guess it has an added scare factor than the outdoor one’s, because it goes twisting around the other rides so closely that you think that you are going to hit them. If it gets too hot to handle, the easiest remedy is to keep your eyes closed.

We did have a good time though; the only damper was that it was raining most of the time. I also would have loved to go visiting some other sites as well, but there is so much that you can do in 3 ½ days. Who knows, maybe another time perhaps?

On a separate note, I don’t know about other airlines, but compared to Emirates, our Sri Lankan has a long way to go. You’d think it would fall apart the way it was shuddering during taxing. The return flight had a weird engine noise as well. Oh well, guess we have to keep our faith with the engineers.

Annual office trip is coming up this weekend, so I’ll be off to Habarana and Trinco, again, and sponsored too :D Yay... lucky me.

Have a good weekend all.


Random street shot - KL city
Petronas Twin Towers @ night
Random street shot - KL city
Random street shot - KL city
Reaching for the clouds
Random street shot - KL city
Inside Suria KLCC Mall
Cosmo World, indoor amusement park in Times Square Mall


santhoshi said...

I really liked KL...... u r right about time standing still when u are inside a mall.. i can relate to that..

santhoshi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chavie said...

sounds like a very interesting trip Azrael... it's wonderful how Malaysia has developed so much in the past few decades isn't it? great photos!

and wow, you're really lucky, getting to visit Trinco again so soon! :D

Gadgetgirl said...

Oh boy!!! I would do anything to get back there. Loving the shots uve taken far better than the ones I ve taken. :)
The last shot which is the Time Square Mall brought back a helluva lotta memories! Oh boy I wanna go back. :(