Shopping and meeting a New Year
At the breakfast we agreed that this day will be lazy day - sunbathing, shopping and partying. We started the day with the hotel beach and pool. The sea water near the hotel was not clean; therefore we were swimming in the pool. May be the water was opaque because of the influence of tidal wave and tsunami, but we have also heard that Penang is not for beach lovers as here lies the second largest town in Malaysia (1,2 million inhabitants) - Georgetown and pollution coming from the city had made the waters dirty.
So, we were lying on the beach, enjoying the sun, reading the books, playing in pool - everybody had the activity for his or her taste. When we discussed about spend the New Year’s Eve. We all agreed that we have had the best dinner so far at first evening, so we decided to go back there.
In the afternoon we went to shopping in Georgetown. We went to one 7floor shopping center Gourney Plaza. Here we agreed that we have “free time” and we will meet after two hours. When gathering together, we all had big and full shopping bags; we have found very cheap and good clothes, electronics and CD-s. The prices were better than in Singapore. We also bought a bottle of champagne for the evening. The price of champagne was same as at home in Estonia.
After going with the taxi to our hotel we changed to new clothes and met again in reception of the hotel in order to go with another taxi to Batu Ferringhi. Speaking about our hotel, it was nice and we all had two rooms – living room and sleeping room, it was on the beach but location was not the best. As all restaurants and shops are in Batu Ferringhi or in Georgetown it was always needed to take a taxi. Although the taxi ride was very cheap, even for tourists it cost 15-20 ringgits to Batu Ferringhi (appr.10 km) or to Georgetown.
We started our New Year’s Eve in Batu Ferringhi at Night Market. This is the place where you can buy everything starting from small Buddhas and ending with CD-s and Rolex watches. It was very funny shopping out there; we bought many interesting things for souvenirs.
When our shopping appetite was filled, we went to our favorite - Kampong restaurant. As expected, the food was excellent, atmosphere cozy and friendly, and the bill for all that was small - dinner for eight people with drinks cost 420 ringgits.
At 11PM we went back to our hotel beach. There were quite a lot of people. Although all fireworks and big parties were cancelled due to the tsunami, people still wanted to celebrate the New Year and expect that next will be better. The celebration was much quieter than usual. We opened our bottle of champagne at midnight and wished all the best at New Year. So we met 2005 - in Malaysia, with 28 degrees Celsius and legs in the sea.