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I’ve had another slow day back here in KL, catching up on work and dodging the rain showers and thunderstorm that have been growing in frequency and intensity throughout the day. Most of my morning was taken up with planning and booking the last part of my trip. My back’s no longer a concern and I’d loved to have done a side trip to a beach somewhere, but I’ve simply run out of time. Instead I’m going to stay in KL for a few more days in order to visit a few more rail sites to record the changes here, then retrace my steps to Johor Baru for a night. It’s not my favourite place, but the rail scene’s going to change quite a bit over the next 12 months, therefore I want to record some of the changes. The fact a hotel in JB’s a third of the cost of Singapore and I don’t arrive until 19:45 as there’s only one train a day from KL may have helped influence my decision!

Whilst much of my day’s been taken up with picture editing (you can find maritime shots here and Malaysian railways here) I have nipped out several times, firstly for my roti canai breakfast – calorific but delicious, then for something I’d promised myself, which was a couple of hours exploring photo ops on the KL monorail system.

Very few cities have monorails. Mainly because they’re low capacity and pretty inflexible. But KL’s will be 20 years old in August. It’s not long – just 5 miles with 11 station between Kuala Lumpur Sentral station and Titiwangsa where it connects with the MRT and LRT networks. Essentially, it’s an eastern loop line that passes over roads that bisect some big modern shopping and hotel areas like Bukit Bintang. Originally 3 lines were planned but only 1 was ever built. Operated as a 40 year concession by the KL Infrastructure Group it never paid its way so the line was taken over by the government in 2007. They’ve operated it ever since.

It’s fun to take a trip on and photograph, but when you do you start to realise the limitations and complexities of such systems (think escape). For example, steel wheels don’t burst then catch fire! I’ll cover those drawbacks in my next blog as I’ll be having another play tomorrow now I’ve worked out a few good photo locations. In the meantime, here’s a few shots from today.

A monorail train bound for KL Sentral passes along Jalan Sultan Sulaiman.
A monorail bound for KL Sentral beats the traffic at Maharajalela station.
Two monorail trainsets pass each other just outside Raja Chulan station.

Walking home in time for a well-deserved (and needed) shower I downloaded my pictures and did some more work before heading out for my evening meal. Earlier I’d spotted a place down the road from where I’m staying which was advertising ‘Mee Sarawak’ (Mee being noodles and Sarawak a part of Malaysia), they looked really good but by the time I got there they were closed so I ended up at my old favorite where you can mix and match with the possibility you’ll see something you’ve never tried before. That’s what happened to me tonight. I saw a dark meat dish in a rich sauce and thought – let’s give it a go…

11:00 is cow lung. 13:00 is Tempe. 18:00 is mixed veg. The rest is a bed of rice with a couple of extra curry sauces thrown in. This is self-service. You load your plate and show it to the staff who then decide what to charge you. This was 5 ringitt- less than a quid.

It was chewy but full of flavour and the sauce was divine. Afterwards I asked one of the staff what it was I’d been eating. Cow lung, apparently. Well, there’s always a first!

Now I’m back in the comfort of my hotel typing this before switching off to watch an intriguing Icelandic film noir series I’ve discovered on Netflix. Talk about a small world…

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