Now most people (not all) think that when you / one heads off to a distant destination that sounds exotic (Malaysia) your days will be filled with wonderful vistas that compromise of gin clear seawater, sandy beaches and the ever present blue sky
(its always a blue sky when your on holiday, as per the vacation brochure) along with a selection of hula hula girls with swing hips to keep you company.
Alor Star is a sprawling working town in northern part of Malaysia in a state known as Kedah. This is agricultural land that’s as flat as a pancake with some very intriguing hills on the distant eastern horizon where fluffy white clouds seem to hang out. On the western edge are the Straits of Malacca.
Agricultural land in the sense that, this is where rice is grown and harvested. Kedah state is also know as the rice bowl of Malaysia.When I visited in early April, acidic green photographs of paddy fields were not the order of the day. Brown pools of water were on offer, not very photogenic.
Like all towns. Its a place where people live, work, fall in and out of love, get divorced, relax, shop and try to make a few quid / Ringit (Malaysian currency).
The air temperature is hot and very humid. I found it to be a town of contrasts. Dodgy pavements if any, cars, small motorcycles zip around, food courts, workshops, places of worship and street markets. This is in complete contrast to the American styled over air-conditioned, polished marble shopping mall that sits in the middle of the town.
Alor Star is a real place where real people live and try to make a living. This is not a tourist destination. I found the local inhabitants to be pleasant, friendly and at time somewhat curious (quite a few times I was stopped and asked where I came from).
Hospitality was second to none and most of the food is very tasty.