Here's a mini-history lesson to enjoy over your Saturday morning cup of coffee.
On August 31, 1957 Malaysia declared its independence - merdeka- from the British. Thus, every August 31 is Independence Day here...usually. This particular year Independence Day fell on the same day as Hari Raya (the end of Ramadan). Not one to be stingy with its holidays, the Malaysian Government decided that this year Independence day would be celebrated on September 16 and gave everyone the day off. It's sort of like shifting the Fourth of July to early August. With a surprise long weekend on the calendar, Mr. Happy and I rustled up some friends from Singapore and took a quick jaunt to the sunny beaches of Langkawi in the northern part of Malaysia just south of Thailand.
We arrived a day earlier than the others and booked into the Rainbow Lodge on Cenang Beach. It's a no frills, budget spot but it was perfect for our needs. It was clean, the owners are friendly and you're a three minute walk to dozens of restaurants, the beach and nightlife. We shared the area around the lodge with some ox and roosters. It was sooo quiet and peaceful.
They could maybe use a new sign as the hot Langkawi sun has baked off what - I presume - is the rainbow the sign once sported.
While soaking up the sun, we noticed this new restaurant the Cliff.
It was fantastic!!! Sundowners? Yes please!
Obviously the views are gorgeous, but the food completely exceeded my expectations!
Yogurt marinated chicken skewers with sauteed onions and mushrooms to start.
And chocolate decadence on a plate was the final nail in my coffin.
Early Friday morning we grabbed some breakfast, and headed over to our fancier digs at the new Danna Hotel.
The front of the Colonial hotel looks out onto the marina and the back is the pool and a private beach.
The views were great. The boyz especially enjoyed the ones from the bar.
Mr. Happy has been boning up on his freestyle skills so on our last day I challenged him to a swim to a nearby island. I guesstimated the distance was just about a half mile. A distance he shouldn't have a problem with...
Can you say, "Famous last words..."?
Unfortunately, Mr. Happy turned into Mr. Nervous once he hit the open water. Whenever I got more than ten feet away from him he accused me of having hatched a plot to kill him.
I assure you this was not the case.
As storm clouds rolled in, I urged Mr. Happy to quicken his stroke. He wasted a lot of his much needed energy shouting at me. I suppose fear does funny things to a person. We made it back! Alive!
But it took a while for Mr. Happy to regain his cheerful disposition.
We capped off our weekend with some drinks on our balcony.
And a bit of dinner at the Marina.
Bring it on Independence Day wherever, whenever!