Wednesday, January 21, 2009

January 20, 2008 - Penang, Malaysia

This always happens to us. The longer we stay somewhere, the longer we want to stick around. Between tasty meals at hawker centers and in Little India, we've been exploring the local museums to learn more about the mix of cultures here. And somewhere along the way we discovered the section of Chinatown where we can buy just about anything we could conceive of needing for the boat for very short money. For example, the faucet and tub fixtures in the aft head needed to be replaced. They still worked fine, but esthetically they made the whole area look shabby. When we stumbled across a shop selling kitchen and bath fixtures for less than we've ever seen anywhere, we couldn't pass up the opportunity to switch out the old ones.

Our old laptop, the one that I fried by spilling a beverage on during the Pacific Crossing, which Sten repaired in French Polynesia, started acting up this week. Now, it isn't often that we find ourselves near a computer service center, but here we are, a $2.80 taxi ride away. So on Tuesday, I took my machine to the local Toshiba repair center. After two years of relying on it as our lifeline to the world - using it for research, weather reports, tide and current predictions, email, photo and video archiving, blog updates, skype chats with friends and family, and watching DVD's - I immediately had extreme separation anxiety from my notebook. I very nearly couldn't get in the elevator and leave it behind.

After terminating some connections, the technician informed us that we needed a new keyboard. If it arrives from KL by Friday, we'll be able to leave Penang this weekend. But Chinese New Year starts on Monday. And it seems to be a shame to leave town right before one of the biggest parties of the year. So maybe we'll stick around. In any case, between now and Friday we're sure to find another project to keep us in town for a few more days.

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