Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The day whole world went to Melaka

We took another trip to Melaka. The last time we went there the organizer didn't tell us most of the group were gamblers. We even dropped by at Genting's casino. (OK, fair enough, they told us Genting was part of the plan). Then they took us to an old well in some out of the way village in Melaka to get some blessed well water to bathe in so they could get lucky with numbers in the 4 digit game.

Then they took us to a zoo and imitation safari called A Formosa. That was the trick. The name. We thought it was the real thing. But there must be a dozen other places called A Formosa in Melaka.

No Joker Street, no old fort, no St Pauls' Hill and no museums. My kids didn't mind, but I hate zoos with all those sad-looking animals. I sort of felt cheated. Who ever plan a trip to Melaka without going up St Paul's hill and knock on some old bricks, stare at some marble gravestones or take a picture of the old Saint all dressed in white standing guard outside his 'open air' church?This time we're determined to get to the old fort & the joker's street. Oops! I really mean the famous quaint old Jonker Street (aka Jalan Hang Jebat) of historical Melaka's business district. OK that's my first impression. People on that street are all in businesses of one kind or another, whether it's food, souvenirs, clothes, antiques or artworks.

We picked on a less crowded day, or so we thought. And this time, my kids are all grown up. And at least one of them knows the way around and could drive us there.

But it seemed the whole world went to visit Melaka on the same day. All the streets were jammed. Cars, buses, people, whole families even, prowling all over Melaka town (or is it city?).

We looked on in horror as people queued along the streets for their lunch.

Somehow we managed to get inside a little Nyonya joint called Nancy's Kitchen. Phew!

Then we experienced a little bit of rain in the afternoon while walking all around St. Paul's Hill. We saw a fascinating sight. A couple of trishaws complete with passengers on board were racing each other through the rain.

Having enough of that crowd, we decided to go back to KL for dinner. But our 'driver' had the foresight to take us (through another 1/2 hour crawl) to a cake-shop to get us some snacks in case we get hungry on the way.

Sure enough, it was a long 1 hour crawl shifting between 1st and 2nd gears from Senawang to Nilai. The journey back to KL took 3 hours instead of 2.

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