My mid-semester break turned into three weeks back and forth of travel and not one minute was wasted. The first destination was Singapore where I had the busiest four days. The highlight would have to be the night safari at the zoo but the winner was being able to go shark diving at the Singapore aquarium. It was surreal. Sting rays and sharks all around me, not to mention the countless number of fish and eels.
Next stop over was Sabah, Kota Kinabalu where I got to go jungle trekking and experience the treetop canopy walkway. If you haven't heard of it, you are suspended 180ft above the forest floor walking along ladders with only rope making sure you don't fall. When I was up there - perfect timing - typical Malaysian downpour. One minute it was so hot you couldn't breathe and the next it was hard to see in front of you because the rain was so heavy.
Next stop Bali. What to do in Bali but sun bake, party and eat amazing food. Not forgetting the super cheap shopping! Final stop was Kuala Lumpur where a well-deserved recovery was pushed aside for more exploring in the Bat Caves.
It was time to fly back to Kuching and get settled back into uni life, although, it is best to mention that Malaysia is never short for a public holiday. The count so far is four this semester and I hear there are a few more still to come.
If anyone is planning on studying abroad there are a few things about Malaysia you should know. They don't run on Melbourne time. The semester is 14 weeks so you have plenty of time to finish your assignments, however efficiency isn't high on the priority list and what could be done in one second in Melbourne can often take much, much longer in Kuching. This can be quite frustrating and tedious. Although, you can view it as an opportunity to see how a different culture operates.
I seem to be constantly asked "Why Kuching?" Well, it really is a place with hidden gems. Kuching is a great destination to fly anywhere in south-east Asia, people are friendly and you're never short for a good cat statue to climb or a rainforest to watch the orangutans and a beach to spend the weekend. It is different but isn't that what you want from student exchange?
Till next time,