|A bridge over the river from the cruise boat.|
Some dear friends may remember that I named my muse Shirley a few years ago, and she’s been pretty good at alluding me in the past couple of years. Oh, she’d show herself, maybe peek around a corner, just long enough for me to get an idea, but somehow slip away when the writing got to be real work.
Well, she’s resurfaced and I’m pretty sure she’s bragging with her other muse friends about how she dragged her recalcitrant writer half-way around the world is search of her. Well, credit where credit is due - she did, successfully.
Melaka has proven to be an oasis for me. There is just the right amount of things that are new to me to keep me interested and the perfect combination of comfortable, familiar stuff to make me settle down in my little hotel room and write.
|Wonderful shopping on Jonker Street|
|J's Corner staff!|
Malaysia, in general, is very welcoming. There are a lot of Malaysians, especially the older generations, who speak beautiful English, because the country was under British rule for so long. But even if they aren’t fluent it is a rare bird that doesn’t try as hard as he can to speak with me. In every country, there have been those who you can just tell are irritated by the whole foreigner thing and don’t we have the same thing in America?
One of the things that struck me very quickly is that it takes no more than a couple of days before you begin not to notice head scarves. They are such a big deal is other parts of the world, including my own country, that I was surprised how easy it is to become used to something completely enigmatic to us. Now, I rarely seem to notice unless the woman is wearing one with some bling to it. Yes, they do exist, sparkly headscarves, and I am a victim of the “sparkle effect” – anything that glitters gets my attention. I see the occasional burqa here as well and, frankly, it is a far different experience.
But getting back to Melaka and my flighty muse Shirley, she’s here and apparently she’s staying for a while and so am I. I plan to stay in this same hotel for at least a month before I head to Bali. Besides working hard on the first draft of my new book, I am launching myself as an online researcher and freelance writer (at ridiculously reasonable rates!). So my blogs may be a little less exploratory, but I’ll try to keep the flavor going!
|Another picture from the river cruise!|