It’s probably the first year that I’ve actually had Christmas outside of Australia. Being in Malaysia, I suppose it’s not that different, in that it’s certainly no ‘white’ Christmas, nor is there present-filled stockings, or Santa climbing down chimneys. Instead, if your idea of Christmas is plenty of traffic jams, a ton of crowded shopping centres and plenty of durians, I suppose you can’t go wrong coming here.
Christmas day for me started with a drive to Malacca. A simple trip to Malacca that should have taken 1.5 hours, ended up being a 4 hours drive. It’s probably not that much of a surprise to locals around here. After all, I am battling with the thousands of other holiday makers during this Christmas week. Mind you, I probably could have walked there quicker given the super slow and long traffic jams we were in. Given half the day was spent in a car, we really didn’t have too much sunlight left before it gets dark. As if traffic jam wasn’t enough, once we got to Jonker Walk (鸡场街文化坊）, we had to put with people jam!
I suppose it adds to the atmosphere, if you like to see it a different way. It didn’t take me too long to realise, Malaysia is pretty crazy about ‘Angry Birds’ at the moment..
There were quite a few stores selling Angry Birds merchandise ranging from slippers, bottles, figurines, balloons, tshirts.. etc etc.. Maybe I am slow to catch on, but I just did not realise how much this game have invaded our phones, and now the lives of Malaysians for that matter.
Apparently Malacca is famous for 2 cuisines, the chicken rice ball (It’s really just rice served in coin sized balls), and Gula Melaka (Locally made sugar used in desserts a lot). Neither of which I bothered to try. Instead, it was durians that caught my attention. In a country mad about durians, there’s certainly a million ways you will find it cooked or made. For example, check out this unique (apparently Malacca only) Durian Crispy Roll!
There’s plenty of others served in more common forms. This one serves them in the form of ice cream, tarts, drinks, and even buns:
If food isn’t your thing, and you wanted to look around for some local arts and crafts, you certainly won’t be disappointed! Perhaps you’re interested in some Angry Birds wood-carvings?
Well, as I said earlier, given half the day was already spent in a traffic jam, it was no time before the sun started to set on us. So it was either another few hours traffic jam to go home, or join some people jam for whatever else we wanted to do locally. We chose the latter, and took the obligatory river boat ride.
It was probably a good hour and a half before we got on the boat.
For a ride that only cost RM10 (~AUD$3.30), and a tour guide that conducted the whole thing in a language I didn’t completely understand (Malay), I suppose it wasn’t so bad for this 45 minutes ride.
We had plenty of previews of all things along the river that we missed out on, due to traffic jam this morning. The crowd on the boat didn’t look too impressed, and some fell asleep, so wasn’t sure if I really missed out on much.
It’s not your typical Christmas day, but overall, it was still one to remember. The day had certainly taught and given me a new level of tolerance required to sit in a traffic/people jams! That alone made this Christmas day trip worth it, don’t you think?