Journal 67: My Awesome House in the Country


So, as part of my new job, I will be working both in Kuala Lumpur and in Serimban, a large province with small villages throughout the south and east of KL.

There’s not a lot going on in these parts, so I will have plenty of time to do what I have set out to do for this year.  And with all the traveling, book editing, film production and photography edits that I need to do, I am sure all that down time will come in quite handy.

I will be adding a journal about the local area and when I get my car I will be able to drive around to the neighboring places and find out more.  But in the mean time, I wanted also to talk about my new place in the country.

Not being a very populated place, there’s not much need for high-rise apartments and skyscrapers.  So they tend to be one- and two-story condos that are built in long rows.  They generally don’t build them longer than 10 or so homes.  And they are almost always covered in terracotta roof tiles.  It’s a pretty common site throughout Asia in general.

My place is an “end unit.”  Which means that it has the whole side of the house as a yard or patio area.  It’s made more for a larger family, so I am not sure why I was the one chosen for this particular house, but here I am — me and my huge driveway.

It’s partially covered.  It has a large security gate.  And it can fit several cars — as if I would ever have that need…

They love bars and security measures in Asia.  So my very large entryway has a giant cage to keep people in (or out, depending on the perspective).  And with 15-foot ceilings, there are lots of fans throughout.

There are four bedrooms, mine being the master suite with private bath.

The other bedrooms enter directly off the dining area and kitchen.

Then, there is the living room, which is actually more of a vestibule.  Someone’s come along and mounted a flat-screen TV on the wall, and all of my eight channels are unwatchable except for the subtitled Asian drama channel.  And I probably won’t be watching that one much anyway.

The second bathroom is at the other end of the house and beyond that, the backdoor opens up to an alleyway behind the local merchant shops.

The area around my neighborhood is pretty quiet — except for the random, adventurous youth — all of whom seem to desire the loudest motorcycle and to speed it up and down the main road every few hours.

Along the main stretch of the town, there are plenty of restaurants and a couple of housewares markets.  But just about any variety of Indian food, Chinese food and Malay dishes can be found here.  So I will enjoy trying them all.

Last night — my first night here — I set out to find a mobile phone and a mobile modem so that I can get the internet.  And I found a really nice Malay food restaurant nearby.

It was an open-air joint with about 20 tables.  And by the time I got there, there were only about eight patrons.  Three of them sat smoking and talking behind me as I ate.  They asked me where I was from and made some small talk, affording me ample time to enjoy my food.  I ordered Ayam Padan Nasi — Spicy Chicken with Rice.  I am already picking up the local lingo!

Beyond our little town lies an endless sea of mountains.  And atop these, neatly planted rows of palm fronds bowing in the wind.

Malaysia has long since cut down nearly all of its primary rainforests  replacing them with palm oil, rubber tree and palm seed plantations.  So while these amazing mountain vistas are pleasing to the eye, they are lined and layered with organized rows of these trees that sort of break up that natural feel that once graced these horizons.

I haven’t quite gotten the feel for the area yet.  But the people seem nice enough, the area is mostly quiet and the accommodations are… well, accommodating.

I suppose I will have to go out with my camera soon and find out more.

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