Saturday, August 23, 2014

Porta de Santiago and the Shopping Mall (Part 1)

As the light was still good and I still wasn't ready to find supper yet, I kept wandering along from Dutch Square.  A lot of people seemed to be strolling down one wide street, which turned into a pedestrian street not far down, so I took that direction.  I came across the Porta de Santiago, which is the last little standing bit of the old Portuguese fort A Famosa from the 16th century, although to be honest most of this little that it standing was heavily reconstructed by the Dutch, even having a Dutch coat of arms attached.  The stones were a warm gold, and the walls and floors inside were worn smooth with centuries of use.  The door was outlined with a painted (guess what color?  They sure love the red around here!) metal grating.  As with everything in Malacca, this small part of a long destroyed fort showed the layers of history of the place.

Across the street was the entrance to a large mall, with--the randomness of which American restaurants make it to which countries always surprises me--an A&W restaurant.  In fact, I later saw other A&Ws in Malaysia, and saw root beer for sale various places.  Of all the things.  I went into the mall for a few minutes to dry out a bit in the air conditioning, but there didn't seem to be any benches around to sit on so I didn't stay long before heading back out the same door by the Porta.  Just a bit of foreshadowing; you haven't heard the last of this mall.


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