Oh the shenanigans

Birthday trip complete. This was definitely the worst trip I’ve taken on all fronts.

Flying AirAsia, while cheap, was quite cramped with no complementary food service, blankets/pillows, or comfort. With my move to Korea, I traded in a likely luxurious flight on Singapore Air for a budget friendly airline that I hope to do without from now on. This trip has truly taught me: you get what you pay for.

Singapore was quite underwhelming with no more than 2 days needed to visit. The AirBnB was subpar (you get what you pay for) and I continually looked at the home on the AirBnB app to figure out where I went wrong. Be ready to be grossed out...the toilet was in the shower. Yes, IN the shower. Imagine you open the door to your walk-in shower and you can either turn on the faucet or sit on the toilet. I was determined not to let that spoil my trip and was certain that the AirBnB in Malaysia would more accurately reflect the pictures. Silly me, it got worse! In Malaysia, there was black mold all around the sink, rust in the shower, and the bathroom smelled like there was stale pee. The AirBnB in Singapore got 3 stars from me. The one in Malaysia got a complaint.

There are a lot of things you have to be vigilant about when traveling, especially solo. I would consider myself a pro...or paranoid lol But really, keeping money in various areas on you, having a faux wallet if attacked/approached, having a readily made up story when asked about being alone, and having extra money stashed so you never run out. Somehow, only one of those things actually occurred on this trip. Mistake #1: upon landing in Malaysia I allowed myself to begin the journey hungry. I had many opportunities to eat before I got on the monorail to get to the above mentioned AirBnB but was confident I could get there expeditiously then look for food. Upon getting settled and grossed out at the AirBnB, I ventured out for food over an hour later. Mistake #2: getting in a taxi from an area that was clearly touristy. The first sign that this was a mistake: the driver was smoking, in the car, and he didn’t put it out once I got in. Second sign that this was a mistake: he clearly didn’t know the location and had to call the restaurant. We weren’t far into the drive when I should have peaced out because he said it would be 40MYR to take me to the restaurant. By this time I was HANGRY but I did do quick research prior to heading out and knew that this taxi should have been about 3MYR. Did ya girl pay 40MYR? Yes . After I had a pseudo-satisfying meal, I got lost and ended up asking a valet service how to get back to the AirBnB area. Out of curiosity, I asked how much I should be charged (I was about 5 mins from my starting point) they said, "very cheap, 5 MYR tops." I was charged 15MYR but it was nighttime and I certainly wasn’t walking! 

Things took a turn Sunday as I realized hours before needing to go to the airport, I have NO MALAYSIAN MONEY LEFT. I only travel with a credit card and local currency so I couldn’t go to an ATM and I had spent my last MYR money on a ticket to get to the airport yet I still needed a ticket for the monorail to get to the train to the airport. This has NEVER happened and if taxi driver man hadn’t ripped me off, I would not have been in this situation.

The AirBnB had a concierge and market on site however, they were of no help. There was a money exchange 15 minutes away but after days of walking, I had no desire to walk anywhere (though I guess I was getting to the point of having no choice but to walk). In my determination to not have to trek around town, I went to the Renaissance Hotel next door and asked if they could change some money for me. When asked if I was staying at the hotel, of course I said yes....so he pointed me to the front desk. When I made it to the man at the desk, I gave him my sob story of how my friend and I had checked-out but I needed more MYR because the taxi driver took all of my money (there was truth in that lol). He of course asked, "what was your room number?" I figured it was either 3 or 4 digits for the room number and I knew I wouldn’t get any help if I gave a nonexistent number. At this point, I really think I could have won an Oscar. I went the amnesia route and told him I couldn’t remember and everything was under this fictional friend’s name. He asked for my friend’s name and I said McGowan. Of course it wasn't in the system lol which he soon notified me of. Time was ticking and it was so stressful but he finally exchanged my Korean Won for Malaysian Ringgit.


And this is why I travel solo. That’s the type of stuff that makes friendships fall apart lol

Until the next adventure!

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