At around 3am on day 3 I realised I couldn’t sleep, I’d been hit with jet lag. After an hour or so of Instagram, Twitter, Facebook stalking and the Guardian I dozed off until the sound of the sleeping teacher’s 6am alarm woke me up, again.
I dragged the duvet over my head and into the lounge to join the now awake teacher for his morning coffee/Whatsapp/news/BBC sport routine.
Later in the day I napped, a dangerous move when trying to adjust to a new time zone, the ridiculous humidity clearly adding to my dopiness. I forced myself to wake up by unpacking. The main ground rule was do not sit down.
Unpacking with coffee, then on to a Grey’s Anatomy binge with minstrels. I didn’t dare venture down 15 floors to the pool as I still felt somewhere between the UK and Malaysia, not entirely in the present.
School’s out and Teacher Tom returned home, this meant it was time to venture out for my first trip to our local Mamak. Exciting! A Mamak is a Muslim food stall which you find on most street corners, open 24/7 serving a range of Indian food including breads, curries, rice dishes and a mountain of other things I’m yet to order. They’re really casual, open air, busy venues with TVs which tend to show late night Premier League & Champions League matches…good news. Oh Mamaks also serve ridiculously cheap food, compared to UK prices it’s basically free.
First up, roti canai. I’m immediately a convert to the church of roti canai. In a Mamak the tables are in the middle and you’re surrounded by stalls, like mini kitchens. You can spot the roti canai kitchen straight away, the dough is rolled thin and flat and then flipped through the air, hitting a huge hot plate. Roti canai comes with dhal and curries. Using your hands you dip the flatbread into the curries, the best way to eat.
Next up, tandoori chicken. Again you can spot the tandoor kitchen because the huge tandoor is right there on the side of the Mamak. No wonder Mamaks are open air, with all these kitchens and ovens plus humidity it gets hot! Pieces of chicken are slid on to giant sticks which go down into the tandoor. Mmmhmmm, I love that orange colour!
Fresh orange juice was also ordered and downed very quickly from the juice stall. You won’t find any alcohol in a Mamak, good news when you’re already in a jet lag daze.
When I get up the courage I want to go around the Mamak a bit more with my camera and snap the tandoor and also the roti canai being made…give me a few weeks!
Ooooh I’m definitely going to have to make the most of the gym in my apartment, all this food….I need to get running!