The next day we were up early for our transfer to the Cameron Highlands the first leg being the run into Georgetown to get the Air Conditioned Van that would take us on our way. Whilst in Georgetown we had an hour or so to grab a bit of breakfast and also to consider a curious ‘Malaysian’ trait – though I have since found that it goes on elsewhere in SE Asia. The habit of moped and motorbike riders to wear their jackets the other way round – back-to-front. Is it to confuse other road users into thinking they are going in the opposite direction I wondered? Or maybe there are a lot of unfortunate people whose head and arms have actually been swapped round resulting in their jackets to be the other way – who knows, very curious indeed.
When our driver picked us up, well to begin with he seemed okay enough if a little surly. As we proceeded though, first he seemed to have a bit of a nervous tic and kept making slightly odd noises, some guttural some not, then he announced that he was putting on ‘his’ CD – a bit of a trial in itself as it appeared to a CD of the hits that no-one wanted to hear, some of it being downright suicidal (Tell Laura I Love Her, House of the Rising Sun etc) so not exactly cheery singalong music, he then appeared to lose track of his foot action a bit and the van would speed and slow, speed and slow – not exactly the actions of your rational thinking A/C Van driver I thought! Lastly, he was getting quite angry with other motorists and embarking on some quite alarming overtaking moves whilst informing his by now quite frightened passengers that everyone in the Cameron Highlands knew him.
When we were not crapping ourselves whilst our driver harried other road users the actual views during the drive were quite amazing at first then as we got a closer to the actual Highlands the intensity of industrial farming was raised up a notch but still when we reached Taman Rata it was still quite a good sight if somewhat cooler than anywhere else we had been to.
It was still not too late and after we had got ourselves arranged in the room we decided to venture out on a walk to see – Parit Falls – a walk of about 2-3km all in so just enough to work up an appetite. The walk started along a river which was bit of a drab affair as a fair amount of rubbish had been dumped at places along the river. The route itself was not greatly signposted so we had to use ‘the force’ and there appeared to be a couple ahead of us so we knew we could not be too far adrift. That was until we reached a point of the river with a few different options on which to proceed the couple ahead had stopped and were scratching their heads – so we joined in – there did not appear to be any falls about except there was a bit of a rush of water ending in yet another clump of rubbish down one of our options. Nothing was doing and the four of us discussed the matter until a couple of lads came down the path and gave us the vital clues that we needed – the splash of water into the rubbish tip WAS THE FALLS! Parit Falls, the Underwhelming! lol
On the way back when we reached Taman Rata we decided to grab some grub to console us after the disappointment of the ‘falls’ – a lovely Indian meal with some really good chicken but yet again we had ordered far too much and had to leave some before we waddled off to our bed but not before we had booked tomorrow’s entertainment.