Wednesday, September 12, 2012

My Journey to Kuantan - Part 3 - Missing Malaysia

If you missed earlier parts of the story, you can catch up by clicking these links:

Upon returning to England from my 2-year volunteer service, I went through a short period of depression.

Such was the extent to which I had fallen in love with Malaysia and Singapore and its people, that I just couldn't live without it.

I remember stepping off the small propeller plane which had carried me from Frankfurt to Birmingham, and feeling the sheer and utter cold in stark contrast to the warm, tropical conditions of Asia I had become so accustomed to.

It was horrible.

And it was NOT good to be "back."

I sat at home doing nothing. Constantly thinking of my friends in Malaysia, of the myriad great experiences, of the emptiness I now felt in England.

I feel sorry for my mum. She missed me immensely for 2 years, but during that time I had changed to a different person and found a completely new home.

From that moment on, England was just never going to be enough for me.

So in July 2004 I swiftly returned to Malaysia and Singapore and brought my whole family along with me. Seeing my beautiful friends again so soon, and introducing them to my family was a wonderful time!

At Sunway Pyramid, Subang Jaya, West Malaysia

On the skybridge at Petronas Twin Towers, Kuala Lumpur

Meeting friends in Kuala Lumpur

Friends in Ipoh, West Malaysia

At the Sarawak Cultural Village, Kuching, East Malaysia

At my favourite restaurant, Fu Bin Seafood Restaurant, with the staff, in Kuching

With Florianna and Florina, who would later become my sisters-in-law!

Between September 2004 and May 2005 I began working in England. This was a welcome relief because it kept me busy and I was able to earn some money.

I also spent time hanging out with my friends whenever I could.

Met with a fellow volunteer in Malaysia who served with me. Took my best friend with me to Manchester to meet her

Meeting people became interesting as conversations always turned to Malaysia and Singapore and my adventures there.

Met some new friends on a trip to London. It was cold!!

In May 2005 I stopped working and embarked on a second holiday 'back home' to Malaysia, this time for 3 months. 

The truth is, I never stopped missing the Far East...

And that's where the most vital part of my journey to Kuantan occurs!

Stay tuned to find out tomorrow!


  1. Thanks for sharing your memories, family and good friends are treasures to our hearts!Wonderful family moment!

  2. It was hard having you home after counting down the days for so long, and realising this would never be "home" to you again. A Mother loves her children and only wants their happiness. Knowing that you wanted to be there and not here was tough at times but your happiness was paramount. It was wonderful to visit Malaysia with you and meet all your friends who loved you so much. I think I was in a lift in a hotel in KL when I realised I'd "lost" you for good. Looking forward to tomorrow's post.

  3. Lovely all these pictures,
    thanks for sharing them.

    Greetings, Joop

  4. Really interesting story. I think you were in a sense destined to be part of Malaysian life. Those nice pictures must have brought back a ton of wonderful memories to you, Duncan.
    Waiting for the next installment of your journey.

  5. I love those wonderful pictures with friends, good decision to return to Malaysia.

  6. Another great post - so interesting, and lovely photos again. As a mum, I can just imagine how your mum felt when she had been looking forward to seeing you again so much! It was lovely though that your whole family were able to return to Malaysia with you, and I'm sure your mum could then see how happy you were. We all want our children to be happy, but it still doesn't make things easier when they are going to live so far away from us! Looking forward to the next one ....

  7. Great pictures!

    It must have been hard to return to England from Malaysia.

  8. Mother looks sweaty! Haha Glad you came back with your family to Malaysia though I wasn't there during the first visit!

  9. Amazing how one could fall in love with a country! Looks like your family enjoyed their trip there, which probably helped them understand why you loved the place so much!

    And those tiled walls in that restaurant in Ipoh looks might familiar! I probably have been there a few times myself!

  10. Awww, I feel sad for your Mom too Duncan. But sometimes the spirit calls us so strongly that we must obey. You are part of something bigger than what you might have been doing in England. There was a higher purpose at work, and you took the walk of faith.


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