I've been in Malaysia less than a week, but have already discovered some interesting things about the culture/country. Here are 5.
1. There are quite a few white people here! I saw 3 within my first hour in the country! Even though I do see them so frequently, it's still shocking every time I do! It's even more shocking when they start speaking and I don't understand them. Apparently there are white people who aren't American in this world, who knew? :)
2. Malaysia has never won a gold medal in the Olympics! Tonight as I started writing this post at the mall, a Malaysian was competing in the men's badminton championship. It sounded like a Packers bar in Green Bay during the SuperBowl of 2011. Unfortunately, the Malaysian didn't fare as well as the cheeseheads, and the first gold remains to be claimed!
3. There are a lot of Indians (from India) in Malaysia! I guess now that I think about it, India is pretty close, but still... One of my taxi drivers said more than 20% of the population of Malaysia is Indian! A lot of them own yummy restaurants all over town. Roti Canai. Yummmmm.
4. Language is kind of a complicated thing here. While my family was here, we had a veryyyy difficult time communicating with the Malaysians. We used Indonesian (which is supposedly 80% the same) and got stared at blankly. So, we'd switch to English and get stared at blankly. It was the weirdest thing trying to figure out what language to use! I talked to a native Malaysian who's fluent in both Malay and English about it. She said that if that happens again I should just keep talking in Bahasa because they'll understand eventually. Apparently it takes some adjusting to figure out why a white giant woman in Malaysia is speaking to a short Indian man in Indonesian. I don't get it. Thankfully, I took her advice and actually met four very friendly, female, Malaysian college students on the train and we had a good long conversation using 90% Indonesian and 10% English! Success! Our conversation ended with them asking me to follow them to their house and trying to marry me off to one of their brothers! Maybe too much success??
5. Malaysia just updated their money. As if learning a new set of bills and coins wasn't enough, try learning 2 new sets of bills and coins being used simultaneously! Haha. The differences are small, but still enough to make me have to examine my money for an excessive amount of time before handing it to the cashier!! Haha.
Many more observations have been made... Stay tuned!