7 tips for travelling in Malaysia

Travel

Hey guys, I’ve been MIA for a while and as some may or may not know, have been travelling! Here are my 7 tips for travelling in Malaysia! 
1. Carry your passport. I have been stopped countless times (whether I’m in a personal car or taking a taxi, and almost got arrested once for not having my passport on me!) I argued that it was at the hotel, and I could show him if he would come back but my two options were: pay the officer >.> or go sit in jail for I don’t know how long with other criminals. It’s absolutely ridiculous! And I’ve done my research. Malaysia’s jail isn’t exactly like the Swedish ones where it’s pretty much a holiday resort…

2. Download grabcab/uber. The taxis quote ridiculous prices especially if it’s raining/a tourist area. Even if they run by the meter, they still can rip you off (those meters skip like crazy!)

3. Don’t pay someone to get a taxi for you. There’s plenty on the streets. At KLCC, pavilion etc there is a “taxi service” where you pay them RM2 to call a metered taxi for you. Sounds sweet right? You’re not gonna get ripped off right? WRONG. Not only do you have to pay an extra RM2, these taxis are the most expensive! You’re better off getting ripped off by a red taxi…(the cost will be less). 

4. Don’t read food reviews online. I’ve been to many places in Asia thanks to online reviews. But I don’t know if my palate just doesn’t match up with the Malaysian foodies (I love Malaysian food/street food), but the things they recommend are just…bad. Seriously, so many times I’ve found a 4-5 star review to a restaurant and it has gravely disappointed me. So find a reliable source (not just google star review..).

5. If you’re travelling alone, you can take the express train to/from the airport. It’s RM55 p.p. So perfect for one person. If you’re travelling with anybody else, it’s cheaper to take a taxi RM80-100 to get to the city area (and it goes straight to your hotel!) 

6. Google maps/Apple maps is horrible here. It might be the confusing road names/ side streets but there have been many times I’ve tried seeking out a restaurant and have gotten completely lost. 

7. Lastly, cops can be bribed. Just remember that 😉 

Well that’s about it! Good luck and safe travels. 

R

The Weight of Gold

Personal, Travel

Writing became like the book that you regrettably returned to the shelf. You have intentions to pursue it at a later date but that day slowly pushes itself farther and farther out until quite by accident you meet your trigger and you’re quickly drawn back.

I’ve missed it sorely but now that I am done with work, I’m back on track, my personal freedom feeling like the weight of gold in my hands.

In the last few months, life shifted gears and the hours in my day became a slow, standardised routine. Not the disciplined kind, but the boring kind; the kind frankly not worth writing about.

But several weeks of sleep later, I find myself in awe under the busy lights of Shanghai, taking a stand against their infamously icy temperatures amidst warm Christmas cheer. Armed with a furry coat, tall boots and most importantly gloves, the city I so eagerly wanted to take on is really starting to feel like home.

Paula

 

Purradise

Food, Travel

On a recent trip to Kuala Lumpur, I visited my first cat cafe! Purradise is a cat cafe with a mission to help rescue cats by giving them a safe environment to be in. They also reinvest the proceeds to support pet fostering and re-homing. Many of the kittizens at the cafe can be adopted, but some are already an essential part of the heart of the cafe, and it would be hard for them to leave their friends and family to move into another home.


All the kittizens are extremely precious, and friendly. The cafe also serves small snacks, and drinks. I had the cake of the day (which happened to be cheesecake), and it was surprisingly a really nice, rich cheesecake. I have found many overly sweet, or Japanese style (cotton) cheesecakes in Asia, so it was a pleasant surprise to find. Not that I don’t like Japanese cotton cheesecakes, but I feel like it doesn’t have the richness of a New York cheesecake.

For a foreigner, the price to visit the cafe is fairly cheap, at RM15(~AUD5) for the first hour (with a free drink), of RM39(~AUD13) for the whole day (with a free drink). They also offer group, and monthly packages.

At the cafe, you can play, cuddle and selfie with the cats. The owners are pretty relaxed, and the cats are pretty much the bosses. They have free reign over the cafe(as it is their home), and after their playtime (around 2pm-4pm), a lot of them get worn out and fall asleep. There are a lot of bean bags for you to sit on(if the cats don’t beat you to it), or you can even share with the kittizens.

Waiting for dinner…

This cafe is a must visit if you’re in KL, and I highly recommend the cake of the day!

Daylight dreams

Personal

It’s been a long while since I’ve believed in dreams.

I used to distance myself from them, defeated by the failures that came with chasing figments of your imagination. However as of late, amongst the mundane routines, it seems to be my favourite topic of discussion. To conjure all your fantasies and find ways for them to play out in real life- it’s really an endless wonderland of possibilities.

I’m not sure how easily others can respond to this question but when I got asked recently what my dream was, I had to really stop and think.

In the past, I thought that dreams were a case of fiction, coming from a comforting fantasy land where your resting mind visited in sleep. It seemed to be something make-believe, an ideal which you could never quite reach… It was always so much easier sinking into the luxury of laziness and beliefs of self-doubt.

But more and more, I’m seeing that if you let it, they can change form, become palpable and materialise into reality.

Dreams can only be realised when there is a combination of 3 things: the imagination, committed goals and persistent effort. Only when they are bunched together can any magic take place.

Once I became aware of this, dreams didn’t resemble the night to me anymore. In fact, dreams are what you see and make of daylight. Dreams keep you awake, they give you a life of purpose, and fulfillment means an abundance of achievement and happiness.

I feel like everyone at one stage has beat down their dreams, dispelling the nagging feelings that come with taking leaps into risky territories. And because I’ve done this myself in my life, I’m always reminded how fragile our dreams are. Whether it be someone telling you it can’t be done, or your preference for security over fantasy, dreams are extremely precious and it’s your duty to protect it.

So… what are your dreams and what steps are you taking today to make it happen? I was told once that this is something you should know deep down. If you don’t, you just might be lying to yourself.

For those lacking inspiration in their lives, dare to dream. Go big. Expand the horizons of your imagination and work tirelessly for the life you believe you deserve.

Afterall, what is life but a long lucid dream.

xoxo Paula

Thailand travel diaries

Personal, Travel

As soon as you walk out the door in Thailand, you feel as though you’re swimming in the heat of an outdoor oven. It’s palpable and sticky but all you can do is grin and bear it, wearing as little clothing as possible and as many layers of mosquito repellant as you can.

I wasn’t sure what to expect before I left. I was a little trepid about getting lost or scammed. Thankfully though, we didn’t land in any major predicaments and from what I’ve seen, I conclude that Thai people are a polite lot with gentle smiles and kind eyes. 


We travelled to the busier parts of Thailand and I found that besides the intricate palaces and temples scattered round the city, the landscape was generally quite common and plain, filled with juxtapositions of paint split walls and the mild luxury of muddy water fronts. It gives off a feeling of development and potential but also the sense of being able to enjoy the simple life – the small things. 

Whilst Sydney is trying to squeeze everyone into a box of do’s and don’ts, Thailand’s mentality is if you can conceive it, do it. And a golden example of this is through their roads and traffic. 

You have no idea how fun it is when you’re taken on a spin with a tuk tuk. For us, we experienced a roller coaster ride of swerving, driving at high speeds on the wrong side of the road, having items of clothing nearly blow away in the rush of the moment and all the while, you’re hearing the thud of bass rumble through the seats in your typical party-themed tuk tuk. 

The motorbike taxis are not much different to the aforementioned (a tamer case of fast and furious) but I found myself gripping onto the shoulders of my drivers with iron grip whilst they swerved through traffic jams, always nearly grazing your knees in the process. Only the feeling of being on a bike, having wind lap at your face and the little smile you get from realising you’re doing the illegal is so freeing. It’s really something you can’t enjoy in Sydney without worry. 


Thailand’s next standout is probably the food and let me tell you, I almost felt like royalty when I was eating at the beach. Having vendors physically come to you carrying platters and platters of fruit, fresh crab, grilled seafood and fried goodness was absolute bliss. All the while, you’re chatting with friends, lounging on a reclining chair and sipping on fresh coconuts, realising every second moment just how good life gets. We probably tasted most, if not all the dishes that came our way and we ate till we almost ran out of spending money. And yet we were so happy to be broke. All in for the experience!

Thailand was definitely a valuable trip and if it taught me anything, it’s that you can find happiness in any situation if you choose to.
 
I already miss the streetfood and the busy nightlife. Travel squad better be ready for round two 🙂 

xoxo Paula 

Dress me

Fashion, Personal, Travel

img_1126I had a lot of free time between arriving in Melbourne, and being able to check in at my hotel (note to self: book places with early check in next time. Or later flights). After leaving my luggage there and grabbing a bite, I started to roam the streets! (I had work the night before, hadn’t really slept, so decided to stick within a close range of my hotel.)
I first saw a very…interesting looking store. It kinda looked like a thrift shop but with a normal store price tag. After looking through the pieces there, I just couldn’t find anything that I thought would suit me. Moving on, I went into the central area where there were pop up clothing stores.

I got reeled in by one of the salesmen and the rest..is history. We were playing dress up for a few hours (what didn’t I try?) and I ended up buying a whole new wardrobe thanks to my fairy godfather Alex. He is an amazing stylist, has very unique fashion, and is just beyond amazing.

Turns out, the “thrift shop” I went into earlier was the same store selling the pop up clothing. Through this shopping experience, I’ve learnt to just try on random things. I mean, playing dress up is free anyway right? And also because of this, I’ve been more adventurous with my closet now. I’m no longer a basic b*tch 😝 I’ll find sometime to shoot all the pieces I bought and make a lookbook but for now, here’s a few shots.

 

Kitty’s candid

 

It’s Sid!

 

Me in a picture.

 

Forever besties

 

Ikea shopping. Skirt: grandma funk, Top: H&M

 

March into merivale food fest!

 

 

Mummy and I in Grandma funk 😍

xoxo Robyn

P.S. Totally in love with my deathly hallows necklace. It goes with everything! Follow us on Instagram @eternalwanderers to see what else I got!

Bobby

Personal

I didn’t know this at the time, but looking after a dog opens up a whole new way of life. I was lucky enough to look after a friend’s dog for a week and in that time, I feel that the dog has taught me a huge lesson. I learnt so many things from Bobby- mostly about unconditional love and about the transience of emotions. Example being getting mad at each other, only for him to crawl back into my arms the next, I could not have been more thankful to a dog for showing me what love is all about.

 
Bobby made me realise a lot of things and one of them is that I have a lonngggg way to go with being adept in the art of disciplining. You have to discipline dogs early. This likely applies to kids too. What I did that you probably shouldn’t do is spoil the pet too much. I gave it everything it wanted from the get go, playing with it when it wanted, patting it when it wanted, taking it out when it wanted and it pretty much likened me to an anytime masseuse or a chauffeur to get him from point A to B. 

I didn’t mind too much but inside I wished that I could have been one of those masters that the dog would listen to 100%. Bobby only listened about 30%. He was such a cheeky bugger but at the same time, so well-mannered and soooo cute and affectionate. I scared him with a hair dryer once, turning it on and shouting BANG before he’d adorably run away. I tried to teach him tricks too and he did one! Sort of… I taught him to give me his hand but this only happened when he was half asleep which is probably when he’s the most obedient. I tried this trick when he was awake and he just bit me. Evil dog.

Anyway! In the end, a furry animal that can only bark, taught me so much about myself and about love. Thinking about going home to that fluffy ball would make me so excited wherever I was and I honestly felt like such a star walking it down the street cause everyone stares at you and your dog when you walk it. 

Being realistic though, it definitely was a lot of work. Having to clean up after it, make time to play with it, walk it… It’s a certain responsibility that comes with looking after another life. I’m glad I did this one week trial because I realised that despite how much I love dogs, I’m not at the right stage of life to look after a pet. I need to dedicate a lot of time to get myself to where I want to be and I simply couldn’t give the dog the best quality of life being away so much. But one day, I can imagine caring for one 🙂 

Before then though, I’ll make sure to kidnap you again Bobby! Muhaha

   
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
    
 xoxo Paula