Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Do we still have the kid in us?

Do you know how you can tell when we are getting bored by being stuck in one place too long, like here for a few months now in Danga Bay, south Malaysia? Well, it's when we make it an event to spend a day at Legoland!

So off we go. First we had to catch a bus to city center then find a bus that would take us to Legoland. The buses, many privately run, gather like flies on roadkill at 3 different areas in the city. As the mercury rose, we traipsed around, back and forth, up and down, trying to find THE bus and finally at the last bus congregation, a convivial porter with a subtle head wiggle and accent that revealed his Indian ancestry, pointed to a vacant spot and said with a proud grin, "Yes, yes, over there."

"But there is no bus there!" I (Jordan) said axiomatically.

"Yes, it just left 5 minutes ago" he said as though that would be a satisfactory solution to our travelling plans.

With about an hour wait for the next bus and as the morning was history, we grabbed a quick cheap lunch while waiting in the bus area. As we returned to the place that was once vacant of bus and riders, we found in fact the right bus but it was packed and we were relegated to the aisle, positioned like vertical sardines.

There was no turning back now as we lurched away from the platform. "Why an I singing this song in my head - I'm off to see the wizard...?"

A half hour later, a colourful looming structure appeared with large letters on top that said LEGOLAND Hotel. (Legoland opened in Malaysia in 2012, being the first 1 in Asia, and the Hotel was opened in 2013.)

I said to Judy "I might be wrong but I think we are here." But of course, that's a statement that makes little sense since one could say that at any point in one's life and it would be true!

Welcome to Legoland!

The entry fee of about $35 US each was paid, and as we approached the turn-styles, it was about this time that we noticed some stares were in our direction. Looking over our shoulders and around, it was becoming apparent that we saw no other adults unaccompanied by children. "What does this mean?"

Undaunted and looking for a blog subject matter that might give our time in this area some interest, we soldiered on. At first, we saw only a hint of Lego in the occasional Lego statue or facade. It was mostly like any other ho-hum amusement park with only a vague Lego theme where the types of rides and attractions only patrons of the munchkin type found exciting.

Einstein and Jordan - 2 smart men

We finally found some redemptive grace in Legoland though when we came to the central area of Miniland where, for us at least, was the best part. Displayed were various Lego built replicas and models of iconic Asian cities and sites. I felt like Gulliver on the lookout for Godzilla.

Mosque (moving boat in foreground, real people in background)

Singapore ferris wheel with Lego people below it

The displays were very complex and intricate, taking thousands of parts each to build. One exhibit had a 5.5-m cruise ship, weighing 376 kg. It has 131,000 Lego bricks and 198 LED lights that took the Lego model builder 1 year to complete. For an idea of its size, those are real people in the background.

It lights up at night

Another had a 10-m tall Lego replica of the famous twin-towered, 88-storied Petronas Towers of Kuala Lumpur (542,000 Lego bricks, 1 year with 15 builders totalling 5,500 hours). These Lego-built Towers are the tallest buildings in all Legolands throughout the world.

Jordan and the Twins

Other large sites included the Kuala Lumpur Airport and the famous Great Wall of China, India's Taj Mahal, and Cambodia's Angkor Wat.

Before leaving, we strolled the lobby of the Hotel, where to the delight of the youngsters, they had access to heaps of Legos to play and create with, only restrictions being the limits of their imaginations.

And naturally, the walls had art work made entirely of Legos and the back wall behind the expansive reception desk, upon close inspection, was made up of over 12,000 miniature Lego figures (doctor, fireman, butcher, etc.)

Okay then, that wasn't so bad. We actually came away feeling just a little bit younger.

1 comment:

s/v Libertad said...

sounds like fun. We'll have to try the one in California when we return!