Well, despite our usual last minute haste, (although NOTHING in comparison to the last time we left) and thanks again in a large part to family and friends  (thank you ALL so much for everything - you know who you are - but in particular to my dear Mum who housed all 3 of us so very graciously for our nigh on 4 month "re-fuelling" in Ireland and to Sharon and bump, it has to be said, who amongst so many other things picked us up from and dropped us back to Dublin airport) we left the Emerald Isle and made it to Southeast Asia with: one husband and wife (check), one toddler - (check), 2 touring bikes (check), one Chariot trailer (check) and gear (check) intact. Phew! We spent a wonderful 3 days chez Kendall in the beautiful Kidmore House in the stunning Oxfordshire countryside en route. We had truly wonderful surroundings and company; Luca was just in his element with his cousins, especially his (almost) namesake Luc, and the dogs and cats. Thank you so much to Niamh and Stephen and all of the Kendalls for their hospitiality during our stay and to Niamh for the lift to Stanstead. It truly was a Godsend - in particular with all of our gear to get sorted and in advance of a long haul flight. A kindness that won't be forgotten. As will none of the kindnesses we've experienced during our time off the bikes in Ireland.

We had a good flight - which, translated from parent speak, means that Luca slept and slept very soundly - for 8 hours in fact. And so, refreshed, we emerged excitedly from our Air Asia plane to the (unfamiliar but very welcome) hairdryer blast of dead Malyasian heat - at 8pm. We retrieved our baggage and bikes without too much ado and sorted a (family) taxi with equal ease and with lots of help from interested and genuinely helpful onlookers. The trip from the airport to the centre of Kuala Lumpur where we were staying was approximately 70 kilometres and it was so exciting to be once again in the fray (even from the comfort of air conditioned taxi seats). I felt at once that we had done the right thing in continuing with our adventures. I admit now that there were times when I had wondered if we should stay put when we were at home in Ireland. But no, I knew in an instant from merely observing the colours and "difference" of Kuala Lumpur, that we had once again entered the hallowed and timeless temple of travel and begun to learn "in this untiring, crumbling place of growth".

Kuala Lumpur is hot, bustling and teeming with people. A theme I suspect we shall become very familiar with in Asia. It is an alien culture, to an extent, but the people are so overwhelmingly friendly and genuine that there's an instant feeling of being at ease. Luca literally walks along the city streets like a celebrity with warm hearted people shaking his hand and high-fiving him. We have only had a short time in a Kuala Lumpur which is more modern and slightly more expensive than I had imagined. We have managed to take in most of the "top" sights in that time; Chinatown at night, supper at the street stalls of Jln Alor and the Menkara KL tower. But, for me, the highlights are the people and the food. Without a shadow of a doubt. I think we're going to like it here folks (i.e. Asia). Tomorrow we leave for, well, we're leaving Kuala Lumpur but are still deciding where to go so so stay posted.... Night from us three for now.