Back in Asia, Kuala Lumpur. Big, busy, scorching city. Traffic from everywhere, first attempt to cross the street. Sweat. Make sure not to get hit by a car. No pavements. People from all directions. Food carts, flat rat. Jetlag. I love it.
Made it to my hostel in Chinatown. A safe haven, a shower and a bed. I wake up, – 3.00 AM, eyes wide open. Walk my way up to the common room. A girl of unknown origin starts telling me how she is in great distress. She is supposed to get married to an Australian guy in two weeks- her visa is finally arranged after eight months of waiting and two long distance years. All she has to do is say yes and live happily ever after. But now hesitation tortures her soul. I advise the girl to take her feelings seriously and to call her boyfriend. She leaves the room to call.
A very skinny, alternative looking German guy walks in. He tells me about yoga, and how he only eats raw food. A long conversation about utopia, social structures and alternative lifestyles follows. He left Germany and wants a different life working in Eco communities. Daylight falls in.
As days pass navigating through the city gets easier. I find my way to the nicer carts, get used to the heat, the smells and craziness of the city. And discover more about the hostel. Some of the permanent guests have unpleasant habits- smoking in the rooms in the middle of the night, bringing in prostitutes and stealing. One day two laptops and an iPhone get stolen. Time to move on.