I only drink three things – water, coffee and dry, white wine. All three present problems now that I am living in Ipoh. We can’t drink the water from the tap here. There is an abundance of cheap bottled water in the shops but I have a conscience around all those plastic bottles going into the landfill. So we have this system of boiling and refrigerating water every day, though I have this small anxiety about opening the fridge and finding no water in the jug – almost nightmarish because one needs to drink a lot in this hot climate! The coffee is usually sweet and white, and comes in already mixed sachets. Finding a strong coffee without sugar in a café is very difficult. However, we came across a small café in the old town, where you could actually smell the coffee and they were happy to serve me a cup with a little jug of milk on the side. It felt like a victory! The absence of wine is remarkable, given that there is plenty of beer, Scotch, and other spirits to be had wherever you go. There is a very small selection of wines in supermarkets and they are all very expensive. When we went to a roof top bar for the view of Ipoh and sun-downers, I resorted to a cocktail – hence this pic. I guess I’ll be healthier with only boiled water to drink!

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