So, I took a short break and went to KL for Joshua Bell’s concert. It has been several years since he last performed with the Malaysian Philharmonic. Instead of taking the budget airlines, I decided to take the bus, and the train. I quite enjoyed the journey by bus but not so much on the train back. If you’re planning to take the bus / train – please take a jacket. It can get really cold. The train (ETS) was especially cold. (Even colder than the times when I was on a long flight.
I suppose you kinda get what you pay for. The bus was nice because I had the option to sit alone. Arriving at KL Sentral, I had to walk to Nu Sentral to hop on the monorail to Bukit Nanas. I’ve been on the monorail before – a few months ago but definitely did not expect it to be so packed. (Like sardines in a can.) You’d think that the passengers outside can tell how packed it is and would wait for the next train – but that’s not usually the case. I wonder if anyone kissed the window of the monorail.
Stayed in TheBed KLCC for the first night, and the room was also cold. It was clean but I think I seem to have the tendency to end up staying in the room next to someone loud – or drunk that closed the door so loudly (if not – slammed the door). Breakfast was at 5am (Yay!) I headed to Level 1 and I guess everyone else was still sleeping. My second night was at Traders as I wanted to be close to where the concert would be held (Dewan Filharmonik). So relieved that my room was ready at 9ish. Traders was/is wonderful. Stayed at Traders before. Loved it. Still love it. The bed was especially comfortable.
Meeting My Muse – so after the long anticipation, I was finally at the hall, – at the balcony. I was almost in tears because I’ve waited so long to hear him play again. There was a meet and greet session during interval (my guess was that he didn’t want to stay back for the second half). It’s too bad that we were not allowed to get a photo taken with him, but I managed to get his autograph. He looked tired but genuine nonetheless, he said “Thank you.” and I think I must’ve floated back to Traders. Suddenly I forgot my feet and leg muscles were so tired and painful. I had so much to say but I was in a long queue, and we were being rushed. 😦
On my way back to Penang, I almost froze in the train. It was very very cold. After arriving at Penang Sentral, I had to take a shuttle bus to the ferry stop. Another sardine experience.
I don’t think I want to eat sardines for a while.
I don’t know why I feel compelled to visit Italy next year. I thought I would be visiting Greece or Austria first but perhaps the artist side of me needs to see the works of art in Italy. How is it even possible that I’m falling in love with that country even when I’ve not been there. Yes, it’s time for melissatiramisu to have some authentic tiramisu.
Would I take a gondola ride? I’m not sure – perhaps if it’s Josh Groban serenading me, then yes. But we shall see.
Meanwhile this is in my bucket list: the Rialto bridge in Venice. Well, if I can’t listen to Josh Groban in a gondola ride, I would at least want to walk by the Rialto bridge with the music of “Il Postino” playing in my mind.
I was close to buying the tickets this morning. Decided that I’ll hit the “buy” button tomorrow – Christmas day.
See you (Italy), in September. Ciao
Two years ago, I mustered up my courage and took a trip to S.Korea although I do not speak/understand Korean language. What happened? I had fun, got to know someone when I was in Seoul, and found that it’s easier to meet different people when you’re not with an entire travel group.
So, shall I try Taiwan next year? I don’t speak nor read Mandarin Chinese. I suppose if I survive Taiwan without knowing how to read Chinese words, I will survive Japan.
I found out about Hallstatt by watching a Korean drama “Spring Waltz”. Even then, I didn’t know the name of the place. I just knew that it’s very pretty and I started researching to find out the name of this scenic place. Yes,.. it’s definitely in my bucket list.
I don’t know what to write about today, so here’s a video. Enjoy the music by Johann Strauss II. The first time I heard this melody was in a kindergarten play where I was (not the princess) but the narrator. The Blue Danube was played when the Snow White fell “asleep” after having that apple.
I suppose many girls back then would want to play the female lead. Not me. I was just selected to be the narrator. When I think of it today, I kinda like it. It feels like I’m the one telling the story, although I’m just the person narrating the story. Oooh…. was it prophetic? Telling the story….
Anyway, Austria is in one of the countries in my bucket list. I definitely must visit Austria and experience going to the concerts there and seeing the lovely waltz. Other places I must see in Austria are Salzburg and Hallstatt.
If you have arrived at Incheon International Airport, taking the bus (6002) would get you downtown to Dongdaemun. There are several stops along the way. It’s comfortable and costs only 10,000 won. When I took that ride, I made the mistake of buzzing too early. So I had quite a walk before I reached my destination (Hostel Beige). I remember looking around me and finding it strange. It wasn’t like what I saw on the internet and I uttered a silent prayer in my heart, “What do I do, God?” I was tired after the long flight and didn’t have much sleep. So by the time I reached the hostel, I was really tired. Along the way, I stopped by at several pharmacies to get directions. They’re very helpful and although they don’t speak English well, they do try.
When I arrived at Hostel Beige, it was too early to check-in. So, I left my luggage with the management staff, changed my clothes and headed to Gyeongbokgung. How I managed to find the strength, I have no idea.
You can see from the picture below where Hostel Beige is located. It’s quite a busy street at night with lots of street food stalls along the way. There’s also a stall selling fresh fish. Yes,..that’s right. So, I do smell fish when I come out from the hostel. I guess it’s all right, as long as I don’t smell like fish.
Overall, this is a convenient place to stay because everything is within walking distance. (Pharmacy, Bank, 7 Eleven, Convenience Stores, food stalls, cafes, restaurants, markets, shops (clothes), etc… )
Street at Dongdaemun
One of the most hilarious moments in Seoul was taking the wrong subway train. I can’t understand why it doesn’t happen to me in Busan. The station that gets me confused the most is Jongmyo-3 . Surprisingly, it’s not one of those stops where all the lines meet.