Thursday, October 25, 2012

Cameron Highlands

After Malacca was the Cameron Highlands. I could have made this trip better and more memorable in retrospect.

Mistake #1: Not entirely my fault, I will admit. I dig sunrises. I think they are beautiful, don't love waking up super early but if I get the chance to watch a breathtaking sunrise, I'll take it. So I ask around about a sunrise tour or something like that. They don't offer one and act like people don't really ask to do this. Which kind of baffles me. This place has tons of tourists, make some cash and offer anything you can that people will buy. I ask around I can pay a thousand baht and take a taxi on my own. What am I a millionaire? I was talking to a girl at my guesthouse and she was certainly not into waking up so my brilliant idea was dead in the water. The only thing I really could have done differently is really hustled and tried to get a group together. Or just sucked it up and paid for it. I'm assuming it looked like this:

Mistake #2: Leaving your shoes on in Thailand is generally not a good idea when going into certain places. Feet=bad. Got it. So I leave my Solomon, basically perfect hiking/trekking shoes outside that my brother bought me. Feel like Cameron Highlands Malaysia is a pretty safe area. Wake up in the morning, actually cold because of the altitude, which was sort of a nice feeling, for about 1 min, woke up, had my iPod, some fruit, my jacket, all ready to tackle the day. You. Guessed. It. No more shoes. 
Wasn't a happy camper, asked the guy at the desk if this was common, he said it was his first time hearing about anyone losing their shoes. (He is secretly running the most elusive and profitable shoe smuggling business this side of Oregon) 
So sulked for about 15 minutes, walked into town-shoeless-found some super crazy cheap, black scuba diving like slippers that were appropriate for hiking. By this time it was around 11 am and it crazy rains in the afternoon so finally find this trail that is suppose to be the best, found a small group to go with, sauntered my way up the mountain, started to pour. Which is all good because well I couldn't do anything about it. Get to the bottom, realize all of my clothes are getting washed and being really wet is something I can't handle well so bought a bunch of new clothes.
Mistake #3: Not just paying the 400 baht and taking a tour. I don't love taking tours because I like waking up when I want to, taking the trail I want and generally not being bossed around. However, Cameron Highlands is a pretty big area and getting to a tea plantation from where we were wasn't really easily walk able so after being soaked, walking or taking a bus to a plantation, drinking tea then finding a way back wasn't on my list of things to do after finally getting dry. Should have just woken up when they told me, took my shoes inside with me and enjoyed some delicious tea. But no, I want to be my own travel guide who doesn't need help from a "guide". Good call Bert.  
Lovers In Rain Rain Lovers

"I've learned that mistakes can often be as good a teacher as success."  Jack Welch. 

If you have a bit of time, check out these mistakes that might be more serious than mine:

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