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Here’s the latest snapshot of life in Georgetown which never fails to fascinate me as every day is different. You can walk down the same street a dozen times but there’ll always something that turns your head.

Whilst my back injury’s been healing it still isn’t perfect which has meant I’ve had to make a go/no-go decision. I’ve less than two weeks left here in Asia before returning to the UK so heading back to Bangkok by rail only to spend another two days retracing my steps to Singapore doesn’t make sense – as much as I’d have liked to. Instead I’m going to stay here in Georgetown until March 1st, then head back down to Kuala Lumpur en-route to Singapore. There might be a side-trip involved yet, but we’ll see.

In the meantime I’m loving being here in Georgetown. I’ve often said how it’s one of my ‘happy places’ and I feel very at home here. It’s not the cheapest place in Malaysia but it is one of the most interesting. I’ve spent most of the day wandering the streets with my camera, so here’s a few of the results.

Tram tracks still embedded in Jalan Penang despite having been abandoned 100 years earlier. Georgetown used to have a fleet of trolleybuses until 1961. Some of the vehicles were ex-London buses.

I’d walked over to the Komtar tower bus station to stretch my legs and pick up a traditional Malaysian breakfast of Nasi Lemak but what I saw on the way back really pissed me off. I passed a young European ‘beggar’ with a sign asking people to give him money so that he could get a ticket to Bangkok. What the fcuk? He was sitting there staring at his smartphone without making eye-contact with anyone or making any interaction other than with his cardboard sign. Now, my head is full of questions as I know how border crossings work. I’d read about these western beggars in the newspapers recently, but never thought it would be a thing and that Europeans could have such a sense of entitlement and lack of understanding of the countries they’re in. More fool me, obviously.

His sign says “Hi, I’m travelling, please help me collect money for the train to Bangkok and food. Thank you”.

Less than 50 metres away I passed this woman. Guess which one got my money?

What really pisses me off about this guy is he’s offering nothing in return, just expecting. For the past few nights there’s been another European who’s set up a stall near where I’m staying who sell bracelets he’s made. I consider him to be in a completely different category.

This incident has led me to dig this old sign that was prominently displayed as Padang Besar station which is the rail crossing between Malaysia and Thailand. This was still here in 2009.

Oh, on a completely different note, here’s today’s random cat picture.

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