Friday, July 10, 2009

The East Coast Chronicles: Cherating

Cherating was another disappointing stopover. I remember Cherating fondly from many years back as a small kampung that was considered a must-stop among backpackers and foreign travelers.

Swaying coconut trees,
small wooden huts and chalets,
walking barefoot along the small lane,
the sandy beach across with the pounding waves and
blue, blue sky that stretches forever.
RM20 chalets a night.
Homely hospitality.
De'moon chalet up on a little hill.
Nightwalks by the beach.
Staying up to count the stars.
These are the Cherating I recall in my mind.

That day I arrived in Cherating, I thought that I might have made a wrong turn into a different town, yes, town! Like almost everywhere else in Malaysia, the place has been over-developed with tall buildings, cement structures, etc. There are brick walls instead of wooden ones, there are astro dishes everywhere, karaoke blaring away, air-con boxes jutting out of walls and making that awful hum to break the day.

I guess the community there was not able to maintain the uniqueness of Cherating that made it so appealing in those days. Maybe the Cherating today is run by the new generation, I don't know.

It just seems stuck in between. Not really traditional, and not really modern. Confused, more like!

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