OK, it’s not quite what the Small Faces had in mind when they wrote the lyrics, but Georgetown certainly knows how to do a lazy Sunday!
It’s blissfully quiet here in Jalan Muntri, the small hotel I’m staying in is favoured by an older clientele – many of whom are retired and either staying here in Malaysia for the winter months or are regulars from Thailand on the ‘visa run’. That means that it’s not full of excitable young travellers who are so absorbed in themselves they forget about other people. As I’m typing this an older American man has just turned up on a bicycle festooned with panniers. This intrepid chap is fulfilling his ambition to cycle around SE Asia in contrast to the preferred method of the younger types who have eschewed the inconvenience of going overland and dip in and out of places by budget airline like so many social butterflies.
Jalan Muntri is a backstreet in the old part of Georgetown that runs parallel with the much more well-known Lebuh Chulia. The busiest thing that’s happened here has been a Chinese funeral a few doors up the road. A marquee with tables and chairs was set up n the road outside the house for the nearest and dearest to pay their respects. The send-off lasted a few days, until this afternoon when the deceased got his final send off accompanied by a band and several trucks containing the sort of flower arrangements you normally see at a state funeral.
Now peace has returned broken only by the bells and horns of the occasional scooter, becak (pedal rickshaw) and evening thunderstorm – although that was more sound than fury with a pretty poor attempt at rain compared to what you can get here.
My day has been just as lazy. I relished a lie-in and uninterrupted sleep before a brunch of roti canai, which is a chapatti like bread cooked on a griddle. It’s served with a gorgeous curry sauce to make a cheap and cheerful (but very delicious) meal. Suitably replete I wandered back to the hotel and spent the rest of the afternoon editing the archive pictures which are uploading to the website now.
So, now I have a tough decision to make – what to eat tonight? Georgetown is a gourmands paradise. You have Indian, Chinese and Malay food (or a fusion of all three) to choose from. From sublime samosas in Little India, nourishing noodles in Chinatown or succulent seafood from the Malay stalls on the promenade.