Revisiting destinations is always interesting. The first time I did that was going to Costa Rica 5 years later. Given that I had been in high school during the initial trip and had graduated from college the second time around, it wasn't surprising that I felt different, and that I saw Costa Rica differently.
But I wasn't sure what it would be like to visit Kuala Lumpur after a year had gone by. It was only a year, could I really have changed that much? Could KL?
The answer, it turned out, was that I personally felt very different. Seeing KL again was like reuniting with a much-loved friend. KL hadn't really changed, but I, on the other hand, had.
In the last year, I've gone from being a beginner at this whole traveling thing to a much more seasoned adventurer. I've experienced wondrous places and food. I've said goodbye to friends in South Korea and moved on to a new chapter in my life. I was broken down by theft and slowly healed to become stronger.
So from the very beginning, I felt like a new person stepping through customs. The first time, I was nervous. It was a new country, and even though I'd done my research, that seemed overwhelming. But this time, I powered to the passport control with confidence. I knew Malaysia and besides, a new country was not all that big a deal anymore.
It was thoroughly refreshing to be in a city where I didn't need to look up how to get somewhere. I wasn't hesitant before getting on the public transportation. I didn't need to worry before going into a restaurant that I couldn't decipher the menu. It made me feel like a pro, like I had come so far.
Happily, my memories of Malaysia and especially of the food were accurate and there was no disappointment there. Roti canai was still freaking delicious.
Soon I will be seeing Italy again with new eyes – 9 years later. That should be rather interesting.
For me, revisiting KL was a happy occasion that showed me all the ways I've grown in the past year. I found that I really liked my new travel confidence and I really hope I can continue to carry it forward with me in the future.
Have you ever been back to a place you visited before?