"Words have no wings, but they can travel a thousand miles" (Korean Proverb)

Welcome to Flying Words, Jon and Aileen's blog of our adventures in South Korea! We will be in South Korea for a year, starting in mid-July, teaching English in a private school. We just graduated from college this past May, and are looking forward to having some adventures before continuing our education. 
We started this blog to keep all our family and friends updated and to share our photos and stories. We hope this is entertaining for you! We will miss you all, and are very thankful to have the internet to keep us in touch. 

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Monkeys and Mosques in Melaka

I woke up this morning to the sound of melodic Arabic floating out of tinny speakers. Yes, folks, there is a mosque across the street from my hostel , and so I heard the dawn call to prayer. It was cool, though it took me a minute to realize what it was.

We came here-- to Melaka, Malaysia-- last night after a bus ride from Singapore. Our last day in Singapore was nice...we tried to go to Sentosa, a beachy island off the coast, but took the wrong bus. We ended up instead at a nice park, and chilled there, ate, of course, and then headed to the bus station, backpacks and bags of take-out Indian food on our backs/in our hands. The bus ride was nice. There was an 8-year-old Indian-Malaysian girl in the seat in front of me that spent 2 hours talking to us, but she was fun, and once the sun set, she passed out asleep. And so did we.
But not before I saw groups of monkeys hanging out on the side of the road. They were cute! :)

It was dark when we got here, and we had somewhat confusing directions to the hostel, but map in hand, and aided by three very nice local women on our local bus, made it to Ringo's Foyer Guesthouse, our home for these two days. It's a nice place...hot (fans but no AC)...the owner is really chill. He offered to lend us money for dinner since we hadn't changed much money yet, but we ended up having just enough.

This morning, we got up and headed to the central area of Melaka. Melaka is an old port city, that was booming in the 13 and 1400s, and was then colonized by the Portugues, then the Dutch, both of whom contributed to its decline. By the time the British were done with it, it was a wasteland, but now it's been built back up to the 'glory of the past.' It's beautiful, with lots of European influence on the architecture but still distinctly tropical and Asian.

After exploring the historic areas, we found something we'd been looking for almost since we got to Korea...doctor fish! For those of you who don't know what these are, they are little fish that nibble all the dead skin off your feet. You just sit and dangle your feet into the water, and they go crazy. We spent 45 minutes with our feet in a pool of fish, and came out with miraculously healed feet. I had callouses all over my feet that I've had for years, and they're gone! It's amazing...I'm definitely a convert, and will look for this everywhere I go! It feels really cool too...it just tickles.

We've decided that we've seen all we need to see here...it was beautiful, but it's small, and very walkable, which is nice after Singapore. So, on to Kuala Lumphur tomorrow!!


Anna said...

Those fihs sound cool! You should bring one home! anyway, what are you doing with kimchi?? is she with you?

Anna said...

i mean fish not fihs

Jon and Aileen said...

I had to find Kimchi a new home :( the airlines don't take hedgehogs, I would have had to ship her cargo and that is expensive/I thought she might freak out too much. So she's living with one of my older students now, one who's always wanted a hedgehog. Sad. :(

Anna said...

AHH! ur mean! jkjk but sadness! i wanted 2 c kimchi! but yah she prob. woulda freaked....but still sad! D: =[