After waking up and getting dressed, we went to a local restaurant and ate breakfast. Now, they don't really have "breakfast" food, but it was ok. It was more like brunch time anyways. Of course I can't remember the name of what I ate, but it was some type of bready stuff with a sauce to dip it in. I do know it was Indian food! It kinda reminded me of a mosala dosa. My fam is probably the only ones who know what that is, but it's my favorite Indian food to get back home so I was happy to have it.
This part I actually forgot was today so I'm coming back to add it in to keep things in order. After breakfast, we went walking to find the market that was supposedly within walking distance. We walked for a while, passing houses and dogs, and asked people as we walked if we were going in the right direction (most of them obviously didn't understand). Not until we got to the third group of people (who obviously DID understand) did they tell us it was too far to walk, so they offered us a ride, and....we took them up for it. (a.k.a. I hitch hiked!!) I know the worry warts out there probably just had a heart attack, but it was a spur of the moment decision and you just gotta go with your gut instinct! That's the advice some of my fellow roommates gave me who backpacked through Thailand for a month before arriving here. Side note: I did see a knife under the seat in the car, and was secretly planning what I would do with it if something happened (heart attack number 2 for the worry warts). We arrived safely to the town though, where there were shops and more shops. Now, the fact that my debit card hasn't allowed me to get ringgits (Malaysian money) out of the ATM, I couldn't really buy much! If anyone knows me, that probably happened for a reason because we would have been there for hours as I have to touch every little thing when I shop AND then take forever to make a decision on what to get. Meredith did lend me some money though... Hehe. And I did have a hard time making decisions...like ALWAYS, but I didn't take forever because we had to be back for a tour to a waterfall! I would choose that any day over shopping, so it wasn't hard to get me to leave.
After taking a taxi back to the school, we met up with some students that work for UPSI (the school) who were going to take us to a waterfall. Now this "waterfall" was supposed to be a 30 min walk. However, after 2 hours of walking through the jungle we arrived to the "waterfall" that was a 5mph, 3 feet wide, rapid part of the river. I hadn't really imagined the worst possible yet because I figured a waterfall was a waterfall. It was alright though, because we made the best of it. There were 3 little local girls who were playing catch with a blow up ball (soccer ball print, that is) in the river, and we joined them. It reminded me of the "one-catch, one-two-catch, and so on" game that some of y'all have played with me. We didn't count, but we tried to keep it up and dang, these girls were good! I should have challenged them to beating me and Kimmie's head-catch record.
Some other positives on this jungle journey (which ended up being 5 hours) included seeing monkeys (REAL ones), walking across a cool rickety wired bridge, seeing locals and their houses, getting exercise (that's for you Coach), taking some beautiful pictures (except for of the monkeys who were too fast), seeing a bull, a temple, a grave site, and more dogs.
There were a couple funny moments....There was this burger stand with a lot of Malaysian flags around it. If anyone has looked at the Malaysian flag, it looks VERY similar to the American flag. So me being me, I said, "Oh my gosh, they have American food here!" Thank goodness Meredith was the only one to hear that, because seriously, would they have American burgers in the middle of the jungle?? Funny moment two...If you also know, I'm not the most talkative person in the world but I'm trying to get better at that, and so here I am walking down the path with one of the UPSI students who understands English (somewhat) and I strike up a conversation. Thinking about the dress code and their culture, I said, "So, in the kayaking and whitewater classes, do we still have to wear long skirts and cover up?" He said, "Ohh yeah, you can rent a bike at the school." I laughed inside REALLY hard, but said, "Oh ok, I've been wondering about that!" My question never got answered, but I guess I'll find out when I get there.
After the journey, we went to a restaurant one of the local students took us to. I got sweet and sour chicken here and as I was eating it, I noticed some bites were REALLY crunchy. I tried not to think too much and just kept on eating. A little while later, Meredith and another girl named Marlee were talking about all the bones they had to pick out in their chicken. My eyes got huge and I said, "I was wondering what those crunchy things were!" Typical. I know. I also ordered a mango "smoothie" which ended up being water with mango flavoring in it. Not quite a smoothie, but still tasted good. I realize I need to get on the same dictionary page with my words and some of the Malay words that are the same. While conversing with the UPSI students who knew English somewhat, the conversation was all along the lines of trying to explain the difference between northerners and southerners. That was funnnnnyyy! I was described as the typical southerner, and they made comments about my accent. (Is it really THAT bad???) I also learned the word for cute. It is "Comel", pronounced "cha-mel". I have decided I'm naming my second dog that, which is going to be a french bull dog. (Just in case anyone was wondering, my first dog is going to be a boxer named "Andre" after the seal from that movie.) Then, as we were about to leave, my hoarder-ness came out. I saw the ticket with the order written on it sitting on the table, and I thought to myself, "I should keep that for memories!" and put it in my backpack. However, a few minutes later, one of the UPSI students said, "Can we get the ticket you took to pay please?" Totally didn't even think of that....HAH! I still managed to get it back after we paid. I'll definitely be on that hoarder show when I'm older.
Now, it's bedtime. Or I hope so...even though some Koreans just came over. Who know ENGLISH! YAYY!
Anyways, Selamat Malam! (Good night!)