After leaving the Perhentians, I made a mad dash for Kuala Lampur, capital of Malaysia, and departure point for my flight to Bali. After covering 40km along the coast adjacent to the Perhentians, in search of a bus or train ticket, I found every seat on the national carriers to be sold out, as it was a holiday. But, at the last minute, I located a private company heading to KL, and hopped a night bus, arriving at 5 the next morning. The journey was pleasant, with twilight stops in desolate, cafes, where buses which would disembark colums of sleepy passengers to drink tea and eat Malay burgers. It made for a Malaysian version of the famous Edward Hopper painting, "Nighthawks."
I arrived in KL early the next morning, at 5 AM, and ate a South Indian breakfast at the only place that was open, a little diner tucked away under a skyscraper. Indian food is actually quite readily available because of a large minority of Indian Malaysians (I should note that Malaysia in general is an ethnically diverse country, with ~50% Malays, ~20% Chinese, ~10% Indians and a smattering of tribal groups), and we were often mistaken for Indian Malaysians.
Once the sun came up, I made my way to the Petronas towers, where I spent the day, reading, enjoying an art gallery, perusing the numerous cuisines in the food court, and enjoying the gleaming Asian modernity of KL.