The Great Singapore Adventure Day 2: Malaysia

Continued from The Great Singapore Adventure Day 1.

The slight smell of curry wafted up my nose, making me think our room was near the kitchen. Being very tired the night before, I didn’t notice it, but now it somewhat bothered me. I got up, grabbed my camera and journal, and climbed back to my bunk bed.

I peered outside the cabin’s window. The sun was just rising, lighting up the sky. I estimated it to be around 6 AM or so. My bunkmates were still asleep, which gave me enough time to jot down my thoughts in my journal.

Cabin view

Soon, everyone was stirring. Someone was knocking on our door. It was Caryl, telling us that we should head down to the Mediterranean deck for breakfast. Right. We got ready, and I was surprised to see that it was already around 8. I had forgotten the difference of the sunrise and sunset.

Breakfast was buffet, and while I was admiring the pastries, one of the cooks greeted me “Magandang umaga.” I kid you not about the number of Pinoy crew on board Virgo. I think they outnumber the other nationalities combined. It’s easy to identify them though, not just by their looks, but also by their name tags. Aside from names that you can easily recognize, the word “Philippines” is written underneath it. In fact, the entire staff had their home countries written underneath their names. The staff is generally friendly and accommodating.

Breakfast: Round 1

Members of our group slowly trickled in to have breakfast. We were discussing last night’s adventure, where one cousin was missing for a few hours (he fell asleep inside the movie house), and our plans for the day. Someone wanted to go around Malacca which was one of the ship’s stops, but it turns out that because we woke up late, we actually missed it. So plans for a quick stop at Kuala Lumpur was made.

But first, we make use of the ship’s ammenities. We went exploring first, checking out the various places, restaurants and services the ship had. There was a library (which I ironically wasn’t able to visit!), a spa and beauty wellness center, a gym and a dance hall/bar. Of course, there’s an onboard casino which Resort’s World is known for.

Everyone wanted to try the pool and the slide. As I didn’t really like swimming with a lot of people around, I said I’ll just go for the slide. It shouldn’t be scarier than the one in Fontana, but there was a part that was hanging over the boat. Not only that, you’d be sliding through clear glass. If you were going slow you’d be able to enjoy the view of the sea twelve stories below, but generally, you’d be going too fast to appreciate it.

I went for two rounds on the slide before I decided I was good.

Hello, Malaysia
We decided to skip the tour the ship was offering. At SGD 77 per person, we would rather explore on our own and use the money to buy souvenirs. We docked at Port Klang and from there, took a cab to Kuala Lumpur. The trip took one hour, sort of like from San Pedro to Manila.

I was pleasantly surprised at how familiar Malaysia looked. Like Singapore, it looked like the more neater version of Manila, but the roads from Port Klang looked like NLEX (at least, once you get to Bulacan). We passed by mangroves, langka trees, coconut trees and a few other familiar plants. What was different is that they had a lot of crows and those myna-like birds.

Malaysia, like Singapore, has right hand drive. It was weird to be riding on the left side as a passenger. Every so often when a car comes, I half expect it to hit us. I think the Philippines is the only country in Asia that has left hand drive?

It was an hour’s drive from Port Klang to KL. There, we stopped to take pictures of the impressive Petronas Twin Towers. Unfortunately, we couldn’t go up the viewing deck. After looking and taking in our fill, we went to Suria KLCC, the upscale mall at the foot of the Petronas.

It was the first time I saw stores with big names sitting next to each other. Dior, Chanel, Salvatorre Ferregamo, Louis Vuitton, Jimmy Chu, Miu Miu… a feast for the eyes indeed for any fashion lover. Since I wasn’t that, I just admired it for a few minutes then proceeded to find stores that would appeal to me. I did mention to my friends had “Jimmy Choo” been “Danny Choo” I’d have gone crazy and spent all my Ringgits.

It’s a pretty big mall. I grabbed a map and went around. My goal was to find a post office, but by the time I found one, it was closed. I saw Uniqlo, an HTC store, Godiva chocolate shop and Harrod’s, where I decided to buy some tea for Mama and vowed to visit the original store in London some day. Then I saw Kinokuniya. I ran in to search for some books that I wanted but didn’t find any.

By six in the evening, we were all ready to leave for Port Klang. I didn’t get to experience much of Malaysia’s cultural side, so I think there’s a lot I need to see should I come back.

We arrived at the ship and prepared for dinner. Our choice was once again the western restaurant where we had our lunch. A notice outside said they were strict in implementing a dress code (semi-formal) but a lot of us were in jeans and shorts. And to think I wore a skirt haha.

Wonderful Ship Staff
We particularly loved the western area because our attendant was this pretty and very friendly Chinese girl named Amy. She served us during our lunch and again for dinner. During dinner, one other attendant took the dish Amy was going to serve us. Her face looked so sad and disappointed when she found out. She immediately came over and apologized for the delay. Afterwards, when she finally got to serve the meal, she was happy again. We bid her goodbye as we left the restaurant because we knew we wouldn’t be seeing her before we disembarked.

We spent the rest of the night exploring the other places we haven’t been to. We went up on the very top deck. The winds were blowing hard and it felt like one misstep could blow you off board. Finally, we decided to try the midnight snack (supper, they call it) for the heck of it. The waiter who helped us was another Filipino, and he spent a good part of the night chatting with us.

It was past midnight when we all decided to go back to our rooms for a good night’s rest. Tomorrow would be our last day onboard, and we feel we’ve done all that we could do on the Superstar Virgo.

Continued at The Great Singapore Adventure Day 3.

2 comments

  1. yun talaga yung reason why i avoided those countries na mukhang pilipinas lang,kasi for me yun nga yung purpose ng pag travel abroad to see something different.for others though they find it comfortable.pero i’m sure may pagkakaiba pa rin ang mga countries,sabi nga nila,”same,same but different.may kinokuniya pala sa malaysia.napuntahan ko yan sa osaka,e.

    1. Hi Melvin. I’d like to think na meron din naman differences. It’s up to us to look beyond the similarities we see. I found a lot of things in Singapore, KL and HK that we don’t have in the Philippines, and things we can learn from them. I hope it’s also applicable the other way around. It’s nice whenever I discover something new, but discovering something similar is also a fun surprise.

      Yes, Kinokuniya is one of the bookstores that branched out to other countries, much like how dress companies like Uniqlo did. Meron ding Kinokuniya sa Singapore.

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