Thursday, August 14, 2008

Wakaf Baharu

I need to head back to Kota Bharu and then go to Wakaf Baharu to catch the railroad that goes down the center of the Malaysian peninsula. I had checked the day before on a bus to Kota Bharu and they told me all the buses for the day were full. Someone that heard me asking suggested I take a local bus to some town and then change to get where I wanted to go. I went to the bus station in Terengganu and ask again about the bus to Kota Bharu and they said all full but I heard someone yelling Kota Bharu and it turns out one of the bus companies had added a bus to Kota Bharu since everything was full. I was happy to get a direct bus even though I had to wait for a few hours before the bus was leaving.

I arrived in Kota Bharu at the bus station that is 2K from the central bus station and the bus to Wakaf Baharu left from the central station. I walked over to the central station and caught the bus to Wakaf Baharu. This was another one of those buses that was really full and not made for someone my size carrying a backpack. I had to fight my way onto the bus since no one here seems to want to move away from the front of the bus. When the bus went over some train tracks I ask a lady Wakaf Baharu and she pointed ahead so I figured I was not suppose to get off. Then when the bus started again she indicated to me this was Wakaf Baharu and I needed to get off. I pushed the stop button and with a lot of pushing and shoving made my way off the bus. I said a lot of pardons and excuse me but I don’t know how you are suppose to get people to move when a bus is so crowed. At least on this day I was the rude tourist that I’m sure all the locals hate.

The train leaves Wakaf Baharu about 6:15 and the first bus to the town from Kota Bharu is at 7. Since I hate taxis spending the night was the only option. Wakaf Baharu is a small town and I’m not sure if there are any other places to stay in the town other than the guesthouse that I stayed at but it worked out well. The person that owned the guesthouse where I stayed was a nice guy and was interesting to talk to. He had one wall in the house covered with trophies that his bird had won in bird singing competitions.

There was a French couple also staying in the guesthouse. They had been to the night market and bought more food than they could eat so I got to try a lot of the different things they had bought. One of the things they had was blue rice. I had read about this but had not seen it when walking in the different markets. I was not impressed with the blue rice it did not seem to taste any different than the white rice I usually eat.

They also had a new fruit that I had not tried before. I thought it was something that I had eaten in Thailand that was a lot like a lychee but small and tan colored but this tasted a lot like an orange. The owner of the guesthouse called it a Duku. This is a picture of a peeled one and ones with the skin on in the background.

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