Today has been a challenging day in terms of transportation, and people have been exceptionally kind.
Six years ago, we relied on Grab, a ride hailing service like Uber. We had some wonderful drivers and many good experiences. Today, not so much. Yesterday we negotiated with a cab driver to take us from Genting Highlands to Kuala Kubu Bharu, an hour long drive. The price was high because it was a taxi and because the main road was closed because of a landslide.
Our guy had a permit to go through, and the road was fine with much reduced traffic. The slide area was about like the stretch of the Malahat that caved in two years ago.
He dropped us off at the river rafting meeting place, and told us that he would be available later in the day. Anita enjoyed the rafting; my cough is still a bother so I decided to stay behind. Now I have a burnt neck from knitting in the sun.
Our taxi driver wanted us to pay 400 Ringat, or about $135, for the next leg. No thank you. Then we discovered no Grab cars were showing up on the app. Oh well, if we could get to the train station, we could take a train to Kuala Lumpur, then another train to Kuala Salengar. No no no, said the rafting company owner. He called around and got his caterer to drive us the 1.5 hours. In a brand new crew cab pick up truck. For 150 Ringat, or Cdn$50.
We thought we had a hotel reservation. Turns out we didn’t, which was okay since the hotel we were booked for tomorrow night had a room for us, even though it was showing full online.
We walked the two kilometres to the jetty for a firefly tour. That’s why we came to this town. They tried putting us on a 9 pm tour. It was 7:05. Anita asked, and we got on an 8 pm tour.
First the lightening was so far away that I wasn’t sure it was lightening. We sped up the river to see fireflies in the mangroves. We saw some before it started to rain. Just a few fireflies, just a few drops of rain. Soon it was a tropical torrent. The staff lowered the rain protectors, and we couldn’t see anything. Heard the rain though. It was heavy.
Back we went. Tour over. No Grab cars. No taxis. A staff member drove us to our hotel and we paid him a bit more than we would have paid the Grab driver.
We got a full refund for the firefly tour, which I didn’t expect. They did take us out, even if it was for half the advertised time.
The day after tomorrow we fly to Langkawi. We’re hoping we have better transportation luck there.