21 Oct - 24 Oct 2011 Alor Setar

Kedah Darul Aman
Jl. Kanchut 429
Grand Jubilee Hotel +6047330055
Spacious and clean air-con family room, with wifi, for MYR 56.- or US$ 17.80 per night.
Quote from the displayed regulations of the hotel: “… no gambling or opium smoking are permitted as well as to bring ammunition, weapons, prohibited articles, bad character persons, etc. …”

Click below for an interactive road map of the Grand Jubilee Hotel in Alor Setar and for directions:

Strolling through Alor Setar’s neat city centre, a time capsule of everything traditional about Malay life and culture, and visiting its diversity of grand historic buildings: (i) the 1898 CE open-sided Royal Audience Hall aka balai besar which is still used by the Sultan of Kedah for royal ceremonies, (ii) the State Mosque aka Masjid Zahir, one of the largest mosques in Malaysia, which looks like a vision from The Arabian Nights and (iii) the Thai-Buddhist Wat Siam Telok Wanjah which was built mostly by donations from the local Chinese community, the politically marginalised movers and shakers of the country’s seemingly healthy economy.

Enjoying great views over Kedah from the 88-m high observation area of the Menara Alor Setar +6047202901, the world’s 19th tallest telecommunication tower and also the 2nd tallest in Malaysia (height of 165 m, entrance for foreigners: MYR 10.- per orang putih).
"Getting the operational plan properly worked out by reconnaissance in advance is crucial to the subsequent success of any operation, which is why we were spending so much time looking at the options before the final decisions were made."

Gazing at the rather tame and politically/religiously very correct paintings, graphics, installations, wood carvings and calligraphic works in the Kedah State Art Gallery aka Balai Seni Negeri, housed in a lovingly renovated 1893 CE colonial building which had been originally planned as a two-storey building but Sultan Abdul Hamid ruled that it was to be confined to a single-storey building to prevent aerial views of the bridal palace nearby.

Watching how the European debt crisis gains momentum, similar to the crash of any pyramid scheme, with the two principle nations that began Western civilisation being the first two to go down (the Italian spendthrift bureaucrats are in the red with an officially admitted US$ 2,223,000,000 and their Greek brethren with only US$ 533,000,000), and, as the modern global economy begins to collapse, concluding that it is the time to get out of the euro and any government bonds in order to buy real estate, food, firearms with ammo, clothing, camping supplies and auto/rocket fuel (... having another country/planet to which one can escape might be a wise move).
"At the outset of the creation of the euro in 1999, it was expected that the southern eurozone economies would behave like those in the north; the Italians would behave like Germans. They didn't. Instead, northern Europe fell into subsidizing southern Europe's excess consumption, that is, its current account deficits." 

Jumping onto a city bus from Alor Setar’s central bus stop to Kuala Kedah (12 km, ½ hour, MYR 1.50 per person), the southern gateway to Pulau Langkawi, and catching the “Express Bahagia 88” ferry (Ferry Line +6047626295; 25 nm, 1 ½ hours, MYR 23.- per person) from Kuala Kedah to beautiful Langkawi, touted as the Jewel of Kedah, an archipelago of 99 islands in the Andaman Sea, and (i) a relaxed duty-free island with myriads of tempting bottle stores, (ii) an international safe and protected yottie haven with jungle-clad hills and stunning beaches, and (iii) Dr M’s des res (… and agreeing with him that the so-called democratic welfare states of the West are an economic failure).

Click below for a summary of this year's travels
2011 Map Konni & Matt

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Konni & Matt Travel Photos

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