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Day 24: Found my Baby

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

If you see me wearing designer anything come next school year, know it is most definitely a knockoff. I am unapologetically proud about my cheap purchasing habits.

Roxanne and I explored Kuala Lumpur today after finally getting nine hours of sleep. If you saw my update from yesterday's blog, you'd have some idea of how much we needed it.

Maybe blame it on the large amount of sleep; maybe blame it on the sunshine; but most likely blame it on this incredible city -- we were in very bright spirits throughout this day. Kuala Lumpur is so far my favorite city of the trip.

It's hard to call one city or town a favorite when traveling because these new locations become eerily synonymous to a child as the trip progresses. I want to love every city equally, appreciating their differences. However, parenthood has never been my forte, and I'll use that as assurance to name my favorite for the world to read: Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Lumpur.

This city is alive with locals going about their days, and people are friendly to us foreign visitors. It's relatively clean to see, and the prices are more than reasonable; I really like it here. I developed this feeling immediately upon entering Kuala Lumpur.

Roxanne and I just wandered around, as is our usual habit the first day in a new location. We began and ended the day by eating incredible food, and I really don't understand why Malaysian cuisine isn't so popular back in the States. Attention business entrepreneurs out there: try opening a Malaysian restaurant (near me please). You should be able to make a fortune with these delicious snacks.

Roxanne and I, however, were some of the very few people eating lunch, as we have come here in the middle of Ramadan. We are so lucky to have the opportunity to see this country, which has a large Muslim population, practice such an important tradition. I feel especially fortunate to witness this, as within this time during U.S. history, there is an unfortunate stigma against the religion. I am proud of my home but not proud of all its traits, especially the stereotyping of such people; in a time when the Muslim ban is recent and racist action toward Muslims has occurred, I find it especially fortunate to be able to see the culture as its less-filtered, peaceful self. The people here are accepting of me; I wish this could be returned throughout the entirety of my home country.

Roxanne and I wandered past many people throughout the day, Muslims and non-Muslims alike. Upon entry into Kuala Lumpur, the slogan "The city of contrasts and diversity" appears, which is something I also absolutely adore. We ended up going into China Town after walking a bit of a ways, where we were bombarded with sales galore.

Moving past culture and practically into materialism, Roxanne and I thus spent the rest of the day searching for the perfect pairs of knockoff athletic shoes. Our "oohs" and "ahhs" were never ending. After a day of haggling and walking, we found our brand-soaked, consumerism-supporting, cheapo-day to be a fun one. Back to the hostel we went, shoes in hand and on our feet and in our brains, and we might even go back later to buy more "designer" wear. This is my kind of city.

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