Now that we were once again reunited with Stein, we were keen to hit the road. It was close to midnight by the time we got the bike back from Changi and we needed to be up and moving by 08:30 to avoid parking fines. It was a hasty pack up. We would later regret this but we nonetheless soon found ourselves weaving through the early morning Singapore traffic towards Malaysia. There are definite pros to being on a bike in Asia – one being that you get your own immigration and customs lane at the border and can jump the almost 2km queues! We breezed through the super-efficient Singapore side and idled our way up to the Malaysia post. Immigration was a doddle but when we reached customs, it was a ghost town. Not a uniform in site and a clear open road in front of us…tempting… but instead we parked the bike up and went in search of the officials.
We eventually got all the stamps Stein needed and the three of us were free to hit the road. We joined the main freeway north, opened Stein up, accelerated to motorway speed… and that’s when the wobbles started. What happens when a hastily loaded, unevenly weighted, bike goes over a bump. A little disconcerting at speed so we took the next available exit and made our way instead along the slower coastal roads towards Melaka.
Having visited (all the museums in) the beautifully-relaxed coastal town of Melaka before, we used this as a great place to spend a few days unwinding and easing into holiday mode. After over 6 months of preparation, this was our first real night on the road. We stayed in a gorgeous, heritage home-stay in the old town and spent our days sleeping, relaxing by the river and tinkering with the bike’s rear suspension settings.
After 3 days of enjoying the food, beer and river views of Melaka, we loaded up Stein (a little more carefully this time) and headed north towards the traffic and roadworks of Kuala Lumpur.