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Malacca Travel Blog› entry 88 of 174 › view all entries
December 14th, 2009 – by: domnicella
Apparently Malacca's highlights lie in its Chinatown, where there are lots of little shops and night markets to wander. The catch is that Chinatown only comes alive on the weekends; during the week it doesn't offer much. Literally moments after arriving in Malacca my guesthouse owner is asking how long I'd like to stay and I tell him two or three nights, he looks at me like I'm crazy and informs me of the above.
I spent the afternoon walking around the old colonial area of Malacca, which has a Saint Paul's of its own, one with more impressive ruins (and a better view) than the one in Macau. From Saint Paul's I passed the town square and a giant boat that sits right in the middle of things, like that's normal.
Oh wait, I haven't painted the proper picture for you yet. Malaysia is hot. BALLS HOT. Sweat through everything you own hot. In the afternoon it poured, which I thought was a good thing, because hopefully it'd cool things off. Yeah right. Instead it just made my hair look like Monica's on Friends when they go to Hawaii and all it does is rain for a week straight, and somehow made the hot even hotter, and unbearably muggy. My guesthouse lent me a tiny little umbrella made for children, so while my head and shoulders remained relatively dry, the bottom 75% of me was soaked through. This is how I puttered around looking at ruins and random old boats and dodging unruly traffic zooming entirely too fast for people who don't adhere to street signs and lane assignments and other assorted traffic laws.
The highlight of the day was finding a (covered!) hawker stand, with about a dozen different vendors to choose from. I did a quick look-see and let me tell you, the options for vegetarians in Malaysia are slim to none. Have I mentioned Malaysia is like China's half-sister? We'll get to that later. Point is: they like their meat. And they can't begin to fathom how you possibly couldn't. The happy ending is that I did find a stand that offered one non-meat dish, and I jumped on it. It was bizarre: assorted fruits (pineapple and the southeast Asian fruit that they call "guava" but really is the furthest thing from a guava I've ever seen, hard and crunchy and green-skinned and not especially sweet, along with cucumber) tossed in a spicy-sweet chili sauce, the small pickled beans I associate with China, and seaweed, all with crushed peanuts on top.
And really, how crushed do you think I was missing yet another Chinatown? And with a legitimate excuse to boot. Thank you, but no thank you. I'm Chinesed out.
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