Wi-fi-less in Langkawi

It’s funny how just one or 2 little things can change the way you feel about a situation. Take Langkawi, fr’instance.

When I checked into the Sunset Resort (which is lovely, see view above)  I enquired about the wifi situation, as I’d brought my laptop specifically to write my blog and skype my husband ever day or so.  For some reason Word isn’t working on my lappy, so I can’t write emails, blogs etc and upload them later (and you know about my previous troubles with pc-hogging backpackers).

The ladies who run Sunset are lovely, but each gave me a different answer at different times when I enquired.  The first one said I needed a card for wifi, and I’d have to turn left and walk to Pantai Cenang to get it – 20 or 25 minutes walk.  And the shop didn’t have a name and wasn’t easy to find. Oh good. I felt that sinking sensation.

You’d think they might buy cards for their guests, and onsell them, just to make it easier, wouldn’t you?

But no. As I was setting off later, a different lady said oh no, I could just turn right and get a card at the mini mart close by.  Really? Sounded too good to be true, but hey, I was optimistic and gullible. I went to every mini mart there, and they either didn’t have a card, or didn’t have a clue what I was talking about!

I returned to my hotel, to be told by another lady I’d have to take my laptop not just into the main beach, but the main TOWN of Kuah, to be wifi enabled.  I was sooo pissed off when I realised I wasn’t going to have wifi and be able to stay in touch, I was on the verge of tears.

Somewhere in my temple, a vein throbbed. I was beginning to lose it.

“Please”, I pleaded, “I haven’t spoken to my husband in days; I have skype on my laptop so I can talk to him”.  (OK I know a quick mail would do, and I’d sent one, but by now really I needed to talk to him).
“I need to let him know I’m OK.”
I swallowed down a lump of grief in my throat. “What can I do?”

Finally the lady with the best English said I’d better go to the Red Tomato cafe with my laptop, buy a coffee or something, and use their wfi. It was better than nothing.

I walked back to my cabana, tears in my eyes.  I had a coffee – thank you resort for having in-house coffee making facilities – to calm down, and then I started to walk to Pantai Cenang.

I’d only gone a few yards when I saw a place that said the blessed words “Internet” and “skype”.  Woohoo!!   I walked in and YES! they did have skype and I logged on. My husband answered – YAY! D had just walked in the door and had been worried about me, and we were both so happy to chat.  He hadn’t seen my email as he went straight from work to dinner, and the credit card hadn’t been used since I left – that really worried him.

It was SUCH a relief! Just then I looked up and there were 2 geckos on the wall, and it made me smile.  D and I love geckos; they seem to symbolise south east asia for us. We have 2 on our ceiling, to remind us, and they often startle visitors, as they look quite real. So, seeing my first geckos and hearing them “chup-chup” was like a good omen.

I posted a quick blog and then as I was paying, the lovely lady manager Pam said I could bring my laptop so I could skype, blog, upload pics etc- woohoo!! An expat who was there and heard about my wifilessness, gave me a card for 24 hrs use – and wouldn’t accept money for it. Aww.

I almost cried.

I walked out feeling much better. Then, I took a turn off the main drag and started walking on the beach, and the sun was setting and it was lovely. There were people everywhere, walking, laughing, swimming, paragliding. And there were all these beach barbecues and bars and I was just in the midst of LIFE.

And I had a moment – you know? When you feel really happy and remember other times when you were happy.  I felt like I did on one of the Whitsunday islands, walking along the beach at sunset when the liveaboard boat docked for dinner.  Like I did on Ko Tao, and on Ko Phangan when I saw phosphorescence.  Like in Sapa, on the most amazing trek when I looked up and saw stunningly beautiful green rice paddies and lofty mountains.

My heart swelled. I really felt I was on a tropical island, and life was going on, and the world was my lobster. It was pretty much the best feeling yet on the trip. My first day had gone from woe to yo!

And every time I hear “chup-chup-chup!”, I smile.


  1. What a beautiful entry! Loved reading 🙂