Friday, July 9
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
I spent an enjoyable afternoon at Taman Rama Rama, also known as the Butterfly Park. The place looks like a giant backyard went hog wild and transformed itself into a lush, tropical jungle, complete with myriad foliage, fountains, ponds with goldfish and a net high overhead to keep all the butterflies from going AWOL. There were hundreds, maybe thousands, of them flitting about, all feom Malaysia, and each on its own gentle yet chaotic course.
I captured a few good close-ups of some pretty colorful butterflies, including a friendly fellow that alighted upon my leg. There were also a bunch of aquariums filled with strange-looking lizards, turtles and fish; and a little museum filled with displays of mounted butterflies, moths, dragonflies, walking sticks, beetles and many other insects. Most of them were from Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Thailand and Indonesia. Some of these critters were bigger than your hand and they looked amazingly weird.
At the stroke of 8:00 p.m. I took in a free show at an outdoor stage at the Central Market in Chinatown. It was similar to the one I saw at the KL Tower, even with the same dancers, which I pretty much expected, and really loud recorded music. Come on, Kuala Lumpur! Follow Ubud, Bali's example and play live music with your dance performances. It will sound better, and add even more emotion and authenticity to that which is displayed by the beautiful dancers. A pretty good size crowd of 50 to 75 people gathered to watch the short 20-minute performance, many of whom took photos with the dancers afterward. It was kind of funny that the photo session seemed to last longer than the dance.