chong-kak takes over our lives

Kuala Kangsar Travel Blog

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Right so from Singapore and Kuala Lumpur we headed on the bus up to the middle of malaysia - to kuala kangsar.  Here we were picked up by our host at a home stay to take us on a boat to his little malay hideaway house in the middle of an inland lake.  There we met his wife and super cute little 4 year old boy.  He explained the time table for the next couple of days and we settled into our little wooden huts on the island - which were basica but pleasent.  Then we already had a slap up home cooked dinner ready for us - as it was already dark - and really enjoyed the selection of salads and chicken and rice.  After dinner - and a couple of card games - we were shown the local game of chong-kak.  this is highly addictive - and have not stopped playing it since.  basically it is a wooden board with an equal number of holes on each players side where there are as many marbles as holes 0- and each player has a home area where they go when they bounce over all the holes and reach end.  very complicated to explain but very good and highly addictive as i say!  We played that for aaages then had a good nights sleep - under the mosquite nets and to the chorus of the geckos in our hut!

in themorning we were treated to a big breakfast cooked by our hostess - who must be getting up pretty damned early!  She made us paratha - like a chapati bread but oillier - with a choice of lentil thin curry or a red spicy thin watery curry to dip it in.  she'd also made a selction of bits to sample - little sweet things made with wheat flour and palm sugar - breads with satay sauce etc.  Different!

We then set off into the village on the land near the island and he showed us all sorts of plants which are used to make curry powder - he showed us growing lemon grass and ginger and all sorts.  Also rubber trees and how to bleed out the rubber.  This is big business in the area these days as raw rubber getting expensive.  We then had a guide lead us into the jungle to a waterfall - but were all warned before hand about the leeches!  they were all standing up on the ground looking for fresh blood!  yeurgh.  we were not impressed - i was the first to tuck my trousers into my socks!  The others had flip flops on so werent so lucky.  some people got red stains leaking from leech attacks.  yuk.


the trek was quite hard and we had to wade through some steams!  some of teh group werent so into it.  but to jump in the poolunder the waterfall at the end was great and nice and cool on the skin.  we swam about for a bit cooling off then hiked back, stopping at a house for tea along the way.  And to pick leeches from our socks.  horrible things!  Then we got back to the house and needed a rest after such an active morning for us lazy travellers!  I played some more ching-kak and then slept for a few hours before we hung out chatting and reading until our big dinner that evening.  We were to go into the familky living room with the sarongs we had been given and taught to tie - and sit on the ground to eat with our hands with the family.  this is traditional malay style for a big family dinner for instance.  to sit in a circle on the floor allows feeling more together.  the food was great too - with fish, chicken, pineapple curry, mango chutneys, rice and greens as well as a hot prawn curry.  yum.  After we had bananas and sweet milk tea and biscuits.  lovely.  and the little boy is a diamond.  he doesnt see many children ;iving on their own island like they do and only seens them twice a week at school.  he is so mature and makes his own games or plays with the guests who visit with intrepid, or helps his mum in the kitchen.  such a nice child, and i never like children!

We played yet more ching-kak (see the problem here!!!) and then finally tore ourselves away for bed.  was a really nice evening chatting with the family.  Will be sad to leave them.


Slept really well in our hut in the wild!  had seen wild monkeys around it in the day and hoped they wouldnt come and be naughty!  had another fantastic breakfast (that woman must spend all her day in the kitchen bless her!) and then our host took us into kuala kangsar to show us the mosque him and his family pray in.  We grabbed some snacks for the journey, and me and some tohers bought a chong-kak board....., and said good bye to jump on a bus to penang, an island near the thai border on the eastern side of malaysia.  Here we would sit around in a bar enjoying chips and beer and then play some chong-kak and eat mexican food and watchj the football - leading me to my current position.  its man u v arsenal i think.  but not paying too much attention.


not being so ghood wiht the blog lately - takes so much time1  but will be in thailand day after tomorrow.  we just relaxing ourselves a bit at the moment.  singapore and kl were whirlwind!  mad to be back in the real world.  here the people are rich and normal like in the west.  so different to thrid world india and ot is only now that i see the rest of asia that i realise how poor so many of the people there were.


anyway, i need a drink!  see you



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Kuala Kangsar
photo by: Caliber-A