A Travellerspoint blog

Kuala Lumpur

old friends reunited

sunny 30 °C
View European tour 2010 on patsaunder's travel map.

Hi all, sorry for taking so long to write again.
Our holiday commenced with 3 days in Kuala Lumpur (KL). This was not a tourist trip, but an opportunity for Chas to try to contact an old friend, Tommy, his partner on the badminton team for 3 years at York University over 40 years ago. Like trying to find a needle in a haystack you say, and you would be correct.

So, where does one start?? First we asked the hotel staff for the KL white pages .... no luck, they do not have a white pages directory, but they have a yellow pages. This was not helpful for us. We then asked our taxi driver how he would begin to find someone .... his response - no idea. We phoned the Australian Consulate to see if they could help. Again no luck. They advised that Malaysia does not have any database of residents for us to refer to!! Chas suggested to them that his only alternative was to go to the family home address on Tommy's letter (dated 1974) to see if any family members were still there, or if neighbours remembered them and could offer any suggestions. The consultant staff's response - Good luck!!

So that is what we did. We caught a train to Klang, 1 hour from KL. The address turned out to be in a business area on a street very near to the train station (thankfully). The number we were looking for(13) was boarded up, so Chas enquired with the staff at the cafe next door (no. 15) who were unable to help. Chas then enquired with an Indian gentleman at no. 11 (a solicitor's office). He told us that the owner at no. 15 purchased the property from the previous owner. He advised Chas to speak with him, and told us that we were very lucky as he knew the guy was at the cafe at that very moment. So back we went to no. 15 where the staff directed Chas to the back office where he introduced himself to the owner, presenting Tommy's letter as validation of his genuine intent to contact Tommy and be reunited with him after 40 years. Wow, such excitement. The owner, another Indian gentleman said that he had indeed purchased the property from Tommy, knew where he worked, and would personally take us to him as we had come all the way from Australia to contact him.

On meeting us, and after an initial hesitation and a little prompting, Tommy called out "Charles Stabler"!! It was wonderful to listen to them sharing stories and laugh about the contents of Tommy's letter from 40 years ago. Tommy took us to his home to meet his wife and grandchildren (whom they were minding that day) and then took us to an authentic, local Malaysian vegetarian restaurant for lunch.

As we travelled back to KL in the train, we could only reflect on the many little situations that had made the day a success - Chas's determination to find his friend, the chap in no. 11 advising us to go back to no. 15 as he knew the owner was in the office that day, his hospitality in taking time from his day and the effort to personally deliver us to Tommy, and luck again that Tommy was in the office as he is now semi-retired and only goes to the office a couple of times each week. Chas and Tommy now have contact details and we hope to see Tommy and his wife in Aussie when they next visit their daughter, son-in-law and grandchild who are now living in Sydney. What a wonderful day. Have a look in the photo gallery for the obligatory photo.

Chas and Tommy reunited

Chas and Tommy reunited

A toast to old friends.

Posted by patsaunder 07:54 Archived in Malaysia Tagged family_travel Comments (0)

Welcome ...

we hope you enjoy sharing our journey

View European tour 2010 on patsaunder's travel map.

Welcome to the first post of our blog. We haven't actually left home yet .. still a couple of sleeps .. but we hope that you will enjoy sharing our journey through Malaysia, Denmark, England and Spain.

We leave late evening Saturday 3 July for Kuala Lumpur (3 days 2 nights). Then fly via Paris and Copenhagen to Aarhus. We have organised a houseswap with a lovely family until 30 July, when we fly to England for 2 weeks travelling and catching up with family/friends. Back to Aarhus for 2 weeks, leaving again on 30 August for 10 days travelling around Andalucia, Spain with Aaron and Rikke. Returning to Aarhus where we again have another fantastic houseswap until mid October. Chas then heads to Tunsia for a wonderful adventure trekking in the Sahara, while I stay with Aaron and Rikke, before returning to Brissie on 31 October.

As well as being very excited to be close to Aaron and Rikke and able to spend quality time with them and Rikke's family, we will also be exploring the country and hopefully conversing with the locals (in Danish)!! So we also look forward to sharing the beauty and history of Denmark with you as we get to know our adopted country.

Stay tuned.

Posted by patsaunder 01:53 Archived in Australia Tagged family_travel Comments (2)

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