Taking my 80-year-old Ma on a memorable holiday in Langkawi


The writer (second from right) and her family at Dataran Lang in Langkawi. — JASWENDER KAUR

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On one of my many visits to Butterworth, Penang I asked my Ma, who is 80 years old, if she had any place she wanted to visit in Malaysia. She never really had the chance to go for a local holiday – she was always to busy raising her three children.

Once I returned to Kuala Lumpur, I made a few flight reservations and booked a chalet in Langkawi, Kedah for a holiday together in July 2019.

When the time came, my daughter and I drove up to Penang on a Friday morning and spent the night at Ma’s house.

The next day, the four of us (my brother, daughter, Ma and I) headed to the airport for our mid-afternoon flight to Langkawi.

Ma had to use a wheelchair as she has a bit of a problem walking for a long period.

We had lunch at the airport, and enjoyed watching all the planes coming in and taking off.

When it was time for us to board, we realised that there was no chair lift for Ma and that she had to climb up the airstair (ladder).

We helped her climb up the airstair and got worried when she became a little breathless but luckily she was OK in the end.

The flight was full back then, even though there were multiple flights throughout the day (a stark contrast to today’s situation).

When we arrived in Langkawi 45 minutes later, the crew was prepared for us and brought a wheelchair for Ma; there was also a chairlift.

The drive to our chalet took about half an hour but it was refreshing. We saw kampung houses along the way, thick forests and a glimpse of a laid-back iskand lifestyle.

Once we got to the chalet, Ma decided to relax in the room while the rest of us went for a walk on the beach.

The sea was so welcoming, we wasted no time diving in. It had been a while since we had a great time like this.

Later in the evening, we walked to the nearby shops and bought some really nice home-made fare.

We all ate in one of our rooms and talked about everything under the sun.

Unfortunately, a storm was building outside and the sea looked rough. But we were fine staying indoors as we had a lot more to chat about.

The next morning, we went to see the famous eagle statue at Dataran Lang after breakfast.

Ma really wanted to visit the place as she had always seen the eagle on television and in pictures.

When we got there, Ma was very happy as the statue was beautiful and the place was vibrant. There were lots of things to do around the area, and a great place to have lunch too.

After relaxing for a bit, we went to see Makam Mahsuri, one of Langkawi’s must-visit attractions. We also spent some time checking out gorgeous old kampung houses, and even washed our faces with water from Telaga Mahsuri.

We read all about the legend of Mahsuri and why she had put a curse on Langkawi at the exhibition room. Ma seemed tired by then, so we went back to the chalet after that.

At dinner time, we went to Pantai Chenang but it was so crowded that it got a bit hectic. We were lucky to stay at a quieter part of the island as we could relax and enjoy the sea more.

On our last day in Langkawi, we spent most of the day in the water and taking lots of pictures. We also decided to head to town to get some souvenirs.

Friends had told us that chocolates were cheap in Langkawi as the place is a duty-free island, so we bought tons of them to give to colleagues, as well as for ourselves.

When we finally got home, we could see that Ma was very happy with everything as not only did we get to spend quality time together, she also got to see the eagle statue, something she had wanted to do for the longest time, and this was special to her.

The views expressed are entirely the reader’s own.

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