Remember how in the 6th month survey blog post I casually let it slip that I have a new job? No? Read the blog in order then silly! Anyway, I got a new job. This will be a “long story short” situation because I already wrote a long version and my web browser decided to be a dick and closed the open tab before I could save the draft. Not all the tabs, just the wordpress one. How nice of it to do that for me.
So I was working at an unnamed school. It is unnamed now because, as I found it in the middle of November, their application for my work visa got rejected. Which means I was not “working” there, I was only “volunteering.” I can not put on paper, at least here in Malaysia, that I was working there, only volunteering. Once I am back in America it can go on my resume and my boss is happy to give me a glowing recommendation, but as for right now, I was not working there. So everyone here told me not to worry, that it would be super easy to get another job. As this has NOT been my experience here in Malaysia I essentially thought everyone was lying to me or there was something wrong with me. My old job gave me one final month to “volunteer” so during that time I started applying to a whole lot of jobs. Nothing. Not a single reply back. A few days before I left the old job, I got an interview for the first day of my unemployment. I went to the interview. Actually, first I got lost. Really lost. I was 45 minutes late to the interview but they did not seem to care. They asked me zero questions and I had very little to say or ask as I was very frazzled by driving to the interview and getting very lost. They of course offered me a job right on the spot because I am not only a native speaker, but an American, which is in short supply here apparently. I told them I would have to speak to my wife, because the pay was not even close to being what it was in my old job. But really, I got a bad vibe from the place and was already thinking that I would say no to them.
That Saturday I got another interview at a place with a funny, to me, name: Awesome English. They asked me questions about teaching English and I got a good vibe from them if not a great one. They paid less then my old job BUT no more working on Saturdays! This is worth it’s weight in gold to me so I said yes. Also, I am now working with a student population that is 99% Arab/Middle Eastern/Muslim which will be a great and fun experience for me. Downside at the moment: I am teaching 7 hours a day. Not working seven hours because my work day is longer than that. I am actually standing in front of the classroom teaching for 7 hours a day. This will change in a month probably once they hire more teachers, but for now it is a lot of fun but very tiring.
So with me no longer working 6 days a week and having a car, Iris and I have been going on more adventures and explorations of our new home. We have always been doing this but with Sunday being the only day I have off, we have not been faithfully doing it every weekend.
So two weeks ago we went on our first adventure: Klang! Klang is the old royal city of Selangor and the Klang Valley. Why it interested us was that it has the largest Little India in the area.
So as you can see, a nice little trip. Afterwards, we were not ready to head home yet. We noticed on a map that we were not far from the ocean. Even though we “technically” had been to the Malacca Straits before in Langkawi, I thought it was a bit of cheating. So we looked on a map until we found a “pantai” which means beach in Malay. We found one close by, put it into the gps and off we went.
The “beach” was not that great, but it was still a fun place to visit. Once again, Iris let me indulge in my new favorite thing: Listening to myself talk!
There was a small market near by so of course we decided to check it out. It was the outdoor flea market kind of market and had the normal stuff you find in Malaysia: clothes, knock off toys, and food. This one, being so close to the ocean, had a great wet market. But as neither of us like fish that kind of went to waste. But we did finally get to try something we see everywhere: corn juice. Corn is a desert here. It is put on ice cream and cendol, a shaved ice desert that is amazing. The corn juice, not so amazing. Iris is putting on a happy face but I think this might be one of the worse things I have had since moving here.
So one weekend done, this weekend up!
For this weekend’s adventure, we wanted to get into a bit of nature. There is a forest reserve near us that has an amazing canopy bridge…that has been closed since October. So we are going to wait to go there until they open the bridge back up. Instead we went to Bukit Gasing. It is a park in between Kuala Lumpur and Selangor, which is kind of like the divide between Richmond and Henrico: You really can not tell the difference. We picked this one because it had some good hiking trails and monkeys! We were not disappointed.
The first time I let out a very womanly scream was when I turned a corner and saw a monitor lizard in the path. Now Iris will disagree, but head to tail I put it at 4 to 5 feet. I managed to get a few pictures of it as it slowly walked into the forest.
At a certain point while we were walking we could here something in the forest. Mores specifically we could here something in the trees. It took a few seconds but finally we saw them, the monkeys!
The second time I screamed was not when I saw this little guy above. No no it was when what I thought was a stick got up and started running away. It looked liked a black snake, which they have in the area, but was running like a lizard so who knows. I call it the spawn of Satan.
So one of the “hightlights” of the hike in this park is suppose to be the suspension bridge. This highlight does not deserve the quotation marks, unlike the observation tower which I will get to in a second.
And once again, I had to make a video
Now we walked up to the tower only to see this:
Yeah, a tower with no steps in it. Why? Malaysia, that’s why.
A short little adventure as this place is only like 15 minutes from our apartment, but it felt really great to get into nature for a little bit. We had a great lunch of traditional Malaysian food beforehand but obviously I am saving that for another post!