Saturday, November 17, 2007

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Part 1

This is the Bali beach where we surfed, not Malaysia.

Kuala Lumpur was an interesting experience. I left Bali on Wednesday afternoon, after another early morning surf. Despite the big knock on the head the day before, it was good to get in the water the next morning. Anyway, the quickest way to get over any fears is to just jump right in again.

I flew to Malaysia on Air Asia and caught a taxi to KLCC (Kuala Lumpur City Center) where my hotel was. For a good portion of the way we passed a vast expanse of palm groves, with the songs Rhinestone Cowboy by Glenn Campbell and Love Is Strange by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rodgers playing on the radio - I KID YOU NOT. (By the way I looked up the details for these songs on google - just in case anyone is wondering.) Anyway, the palms are used for cooking oil and now are also being used in bio fuel technology.

So we made it into downtown Kuala Lumpur and the traffic came to an absolute standstill, much to the aggravation of my insane speed racer taxi driver. We drove past the Petronas Twin Towers, which are the second highest buildings in the world. They are really very beautiful, they sparkle like diamonds when the sun hits them or when they are lit up at night. It was really weird to be in a big city again and I was somewhat strangely energized by it. I checked into my hotel, dropped my bags in my room and went to find a place for dinner.

I found a great restaurant called Top Hat. It is in an old colonial house that has been converted to a restaurant. The decor is colonial, the floors terrazzo, and the music? Well the music was Cuban! Candela by the Buena Vista Social Club - if it were not for the Malay, Chinese and Indian staff, I would have thought I was somewhere else in the world.

I had a starter of "top hats", a phyllo like dough shaped into little top hats and filled with a spring roll like filling. The top hats were delicate and delicious. I then had a smoked salmon tartare salad. Salmon with mango, creme fraiche and lemongrass sauce. My inner foodie did rejoice. Besides the food at the Surf Goddess Retreat and the banana pancakes, I was not that taken with Indonesian food which was surprising because I eat almost anything.

Anyway, I made sure to leave room for dessert as I spotted panna cotta on the menu and could not resist. The first time I recall having panna cotta was in Switzerland. My aunt who everyone loved so much, had passed away. After her funeral we had a big luncheon commemorating her and panna cotta was served for dessert. Somehow I just associate it to family now. Anyway, so panna cotta is like a vanilla flavored pudding with a jello like consistency, this one was served with starfruit and watermelon. Fantastic.

Being that I had been up since 4:45am, I was pretty exhausted and I walked back to my hotel, had a bath and called it a night with the down comforter.

1 comment:

Carmen said...

Finally catching up with your blog, kind of sad to miss the beat...Happy to see you are having a GREAT Time!

The Palms are for Biodiesel!! HOPE YOU TOOK SOME PICTURES FOR ME!!!