Sunday, July 29, 2012

A Pleasant Afternoon With a Future Expat

Writing this blog can be very satisfying, but what is really satisfying is to see that people read it. And what's even better is when people make comments, particularly nice ones. Recently I had the pleasure and honor of actually meeting and having lunch with one of my readers who was seriously thinking of retiring and moving to Penang.

This was actually the first time I have had the chance to sit down with a fellow American who was actually considering retiring in Penang. We had a chance to discuss the reasons why I moved here and how I actually made the move. He got a chance to ask questions, which may not have been answered on a forum or other expat sites. For Americans moving to Malaysia, banking and taxes and other logistics are not the same as they are in other countries, thus getting a correct answer from online sources may be difficult.

We had a rather candid discussion of the positives, as well as the negatives, of moving to Penang. I hope that I was able to be of some help in making a decision, one way or the other. Anyway it was great meeting Ravi, and I hope to see him again.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Visiting the Dentist is Different in Penang.

As with most people, I really dislike going to the dentist. With a certain amount of trepidation and after lots of procrastination I finally decided to go to the dentist and have my tooth pulled. For months I have been putting off this unpleasant task, suffering with weeks of on and off pain from my root canal that went bad. After waiting for an excruciating 35 minutes in the waiting room I was called into the dentist's office, sat down in the chair, opened my mouth wide and in a matter of minutes it was all over. I has my teeth cleaned and my tooth extracted.

The ordeal became even more bearable when I went to pay for what had been done. My total charge was less than $50 USD. If I had this done back home it would have been 2 or 3 time that amount. I was extremely happy that I went to the dentist today, but the short walk back home made me feel even happier. When I lived in Boston and I walked the short distance back home I dodged traffic thinking of all the money I had just given to my dentist to buy his newest Lexus SUV. When I walked home here in Penang I admired some cows grazing next to the sidewalk in a vacant lot next to my condo. These same cows just wander from plots of grass to vacant lots grazing along the way, without any one leading them on. It just amazes me that they wander freely, walking on the sidewalks and in the streets without their keepers supervising their activities. Beautiful and only in Penang!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Warmest Wishes for Ramadan.

I would like to extend my warmest wishes to all of my Muslim friends during this Ramadan. May you and your families enjoy many blessings, peace, joy and good health during this season of celebration.


Dusk at the Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque in Brunei on the eve of Ramadan

Photo thanks to tylerdurden1

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Happy Independence Day to All Americans, wherever you are.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish a Happy Fourth of July to all of my friends and family back home in the USA and to all Americans living here in Malaysia. Here in Penang there is a July 4th celebration at Hard Rock Hotel, but unfortunately I am passing. I am sure there are a few other celebrations going on elsewhere in Malaysia. As for me, I will have a couple of drinks and will be thinking of all of the cookouts, fireworks, parades and other celebrations my family and friends will be attending. And of course I will be thinking of the fantastic  4th of July celebration and fireworks at the Hatch Shell in Boston, with the Boston Pops Orchestra. I will always miss the 1812 Overture played with the fantastic fireworks.