My first week in Malaysia

At the U.S. Ambassador to Malaysia Kamala Shirin Lakhdhir’s home in Kuala Lumpur.

With my dear friend Jean talking to an embassy official at the Ambassador’s dinner!

Selamat pagi! Malaysia is wonderful! All 100 of us ETAs are staying in a very fancy part of Kuala Lumpur for the first month for orientation. Kuala Lumpur is a crazy city filled with motorbikes, food markets, monkeys, and malls (among other things of course). I am so grateful to be here. Fulbright Malaysia is one of Fulbright’s largest programs, and in my opinion is incredibly well organized and well resourced.

The orientation has been very smooth, thorough, and extensive. Even though we have only been here for a week we have already done a lot of exploring and learning. We have been to several different food markets, to the National Mosque, to museums, and to the U.S. Ambassador’s Residence for dinner! After the dinner my face hurt from smiling so much – it was awesome.

With my roommate Emily from Kentucky!

At Jalan Alor night market!
A bunch of Queens at the Rabbit Hole!
My breakfast this morning! (Can you see me in the spoon?)

Each morning we all eat breakfast together and it is DELICIOUS – I usually have dahl, paratha or naan, some kind of dumpling, watermelon, papaya, and guava juice. The food has been incredible, and extremely cheap – my lunch the other day cost 75 cents.

After orientation, we will head to regional orientation and then to our placements! I will be heading to the lovely state of Pahang (Pah-Hong) located in Peninsular Malaysia! I admit I do not know much about Pahang just yet but Pahang is home to elephant sanctuaries, sea turtle sanctuaries, and the Cameron Highlands (among other things!).

The Pahang crew showing some mini love! (Look it up!)

I want to give a special shout out to Betsy Klein Mark for giving me a foot sling for the trip over! Thank you, Betsy…what would I do without you?

I now have a Malay phone number so please add me on WhatsApp or message me on Facebook and I will give you my new number! I apologize if you have been trying to contact me on my American number…I took my SIM card out right away and have not received your messages!

I miss you all and am sending love and peace your way!!!!

ClareAbouts is not an official U.S. Department of State publication, and the views and information presented in this blog are entirely my own, and do not represent the Fulbright U.S. Student Program or the U.S. Department of State or the Fulbright Commission or Malaysia.

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