Tour guide

October 29, 2006

Anyone can be a tour guide, or rather, anyone can show his friends round his OWN city- Check out the sights, steer them to popular restaurants, trip up some tall building to check out more sights from high vantage points etc.

I find it hard to balance it out with what I WANT to do. If I were to kill a saturday, I could lunch in a nice sidewalk cafe with an open book, leave the car to take a train – peer out of train window and observe life go by, hit another cafe for coffee, go to the bookstore, check out the art scene or just sit in a park. I reckon these are hardly activities a visitor would want to indulge in.

My friend Y was in town for the weekend, with his “family” in tow. She was/is insufferable. The kid suffers under her micro-management. Y gestures me to be tolerant.

Kuala Lumpur is not my city, I need a GPS to get around (no i have not). The city however has its charms. Besides the usual arm-leg places where you’d pay good money for great ambience/food/drink/view/music/dancing/girl-watching, which one could probably get in any big city, I have found quieter, cheaper and intrinsically interesting pursuits.

Monkey watching at Lake Titiwangsa is great. klmonkey.jpg

Looping around in the LRT is a sublime study of the Malaysian in transit, and to a greater scale, society in movement.

At Chinatown I’d sneak in to a busy kitchen to observe the cooks in action. There are little cafes where young musicians play a guitar and sing chinese folk or pop songs.

I could take salsa lessons at various locations in the city, and if I’m confident, there are many other places I could show off my skills (notably Little Havana and QBA Latin Grill).

I could take microlight lessons out of Subang airport for RM 150/hr.

I did a mental count of the places I lived in for at least a year: Johore Bahru, Kuala Lumpur, Fukushima, New York, Boston, Manaus, Sao Paulo, Singapore. I’ve found a home in each and every one of these cities. Home IS what you make of it.

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