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Friday 21 Jun 2013
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Retail therapy and a trip to the movies

Back in KL, I got a taxi out to Stacie's condo in Mutiara Demansara, about half an hour out of the city centre. The condo is in a gated complex with gym, sauna, swimming pools and shop for the residents. It is guarded at the entrance and patrolled by immaculately dressed guards who salute as you go past. My taxi was able to drive me up to Stacie's building where we were met by one of these guards who helped carry my bags and took me up in the lift and walked me right to Stacie's door. She has a gorgeous three-bed apartment with a big terrace and even maid's quarters opening off the kitchen. Very impressive.

We walked up the road to an enormous shopping mall - well, actually four malls joined together by a restaurant street - and showed me around so I could occupy myself the next few days while she was at work. It was a pleasure to have so much normality after two months in Indonesia, as much as I loved it there. We met Hibsa for dinner, another English girl who is one of Stacie's colleagues and lives in the same condo complex, at the local street cafe just up the road. The food was excellent, but my tastbuds are not yet ready for Malaysian style Tom Yum soup. Delicious, but so hot!

The next day I walked back over to the mall for my leg wax appointment that Stacie had helped me book. Somehow I have got to the age of 34 without experiencing a leg wax and I was feeling nervous. The salon was excellent and have a 15-minute guarantee, so they don't hang about. I alternated between wincing and giggling the whole time while the woman giggled at me and carried on regardless. I survived and ran away before they could talk me into anything else!

I had lunch in a running sushi bar and then went to the cinema to see Man of Steel, the latest Hollywood incarnation of Superman. It only cost 12 ringgit, which is less than £3, and the cinema was a big new multiplex better than a lot of UK cinemas. I always love going to the cinema so it was nice to sit back and be entertained. After the film I checked my messages to find out what time I was meeting Stacie for dinner, only to find she had a Muay Thai kickboxing class she'd forgotten about. No problem for me - I turned around and went straight back to the cinema to see Monsters University. Pixar have come up trumps again and I laughed the whole way through. What a great day!

I spent my last day in Malaysia researching Chiang Mai, Stray Asia, Borneo and sorting through my photographs from the last few weeks. When Stacie came back we set off a Chinese lantern and made a wish. Then we headed over to the mall for dim sum at Din Tai Fung and a drink at the Laundry bar. They had black table tops and a bowl of chalk, so we amused ourselves drawing on the table. Two scary looking guys at the next table kept trying to buy us drinks but we refused and decided to drink up and head back.

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