(written by Dave)
As anticipated, today started with some very exciting shopping. On the list were batik clothing and pewter. Yes, Steve and I were quite excited as we departed the hotel for the shops with the girls. Unfortunately, as we arrived at the first batik shop Steve and I lagged behind and were distracted by a very convincing roti canai hawker. So distracted in fact that rather making it to the shop, we found ourselves sitting at the Indian restaurant eating fresh roti canai. Our delay caused us to miss out on the entire batik shop – you can only imagine how disappointed we were to arrive only in time to insure that the appropriate discount had been negotiated in the final bill. Gretchen and Nancy were happy to see us. The sales clerk, thinking no discount was required for such happy customers, perhaps was not as thrilled with our arrival. And for those wondering, appropriate discounts were soon forthcoming.
Next up was the pewter shop – with no obvious distractions for Steve and I, everyone got to enjoy the pewter shopping experience. It was more fun than you may think – the shop owner being willing to play along with real-time negotiations, and an empty store so that we did not bother other shoppers. Sadly, I have no photos of any of the shopping. I guess I was just caught up in the moment – wow, what fun…
Next stop was a hair cut for Steve and I. On the way there we stopped for photos at a mosque and ended up being encouraged inside by some passing Muslims. The mosque was empty so we had a look, not knowing what was off limits. Eventually someone came in and told us that we should have stayed on the outside areas. He was as polite as we were embarrassed – all in all, a very good-natured encounter. The rest of our photos were from outside the mosque.
Finally, we arrived at the barber. Steve and I were both looking for haircuts and shaves. It was quite an experience. The barber was originally from southern India and a bit of character. He didn’t speak a lot of English but had a more than adequate vocabulary to cover everything required in a barber shop. Neither of us have had proper straight edge shaves until today. To say that we were worry free would be an exaggeration. Steve had the advantage of following me, he could have made a run for it if I had not survived. Our fears, as they usually are, were completely groundless. Both of us ended up smooth and nick-free – and were completely entertained throughout. Unfortunately, the barber had no magic “hair growing” tonic and I left the shop with no thicker hair than I entered with.
We wandered a bit more of town before making it back to the hotel. I took some more trishaw photos and today will include some of the better trishaw shots I’ve captured in Georgetown. We’ve not yet ridden on one but they are very photogenic.
For dinner we headed back to the Red Garden food court. We’ve tried a couple food courts and think that it is the best one. They have good variety and everything so far has tasted great. Tonight for dessert we tried an Ais Kacang (our friend Michael Wong calls it Ice Mountain). I’m not sure that I’m up for a full blow by blow tonight so I’ll leave it as “just like a cendol, only different” – lots of ice, sugar, jelly squares and other odd bits. Steve and I enjoy it, I’m not sure that the girls were as quite as impressed.
Tomorrow we are planning on heading the direction Gurney Street. We have to pick up ride packets and there is supposed to be lots to eat and drink, plus a mall. We’ll check report back what we find…