So instead of facing that very possible problem, I decided to take the morning bus - which stretched from 4 to 6 1/2 hours! Malaysian buses are notorious for giving false durations. This happened last December when I went to Terengganu. The expected 6 hour travel turned into a harrowing 10 1/2 hours!
I got into Butterworth's bus terminal just before lunch so I decided to see some sights in Butterworth before crossing the Penang straits. Here's the catch: both sights are difficult places to visit; no easily accessible public transport!
Guess what: Though it gave me a really hard time, I survived and saw the Temple of the 9 Emperor Gods, aka Towbowkong Temple (pictured above), located along Jalan Raja Uda. From there, I went back to the bus terminal and took another bus (#701) to the town of Bukit Mertajam, then transfered to a local bus (#15) to see St. Anne's Shrine - one of the few Catholic sites in Malaysia and a noted pilgrimage site that boasts of beautiful stations of the cross, a heavy-foliaged hill climb and a Portuguese-inspired white-washed chapel! All these with my knapsack and my 7kg luggage in tow (straight from KL).
Though I had a few winks from the long bus ride, I am feeling my lids droop as I write this.
But I am more than happy.
Next to conquer: Georgetown!
This is the Eye in the Sky!