New Country…… Again.

August 20, 2010

So, after a long boat ride, we are in Indonesia.  Another country. Our first stop is at the port, when we get a [not] friendly visit from customs officials. And a HUGE Alsatian (also a customs official).

Then we get a taxi to the ironically named Bahagia (happy) guesthouse. Hellpit. Two pathetic fans, two damaged beds, a mirror and two almost busted tables and a view that ends at about two metres cost over $10.  For a more prescise conversion, click here.

Then we went to the mangrove park. Borneo is the only place on Earth where you can see walking fish. They are not very good walkers, more crawlers. Strange, too, but not sickeningly ugly, though not the prettiest of fish.

They are shy creatures, so don’t do anything in a massive rush. Though not really fast, they can put on a massive sprint when scared. I suspect they are not fish at all, but amphibians. The fact that they live in puddles is a strong hint.  So, to cut a long story short, it was fun at the park but not at the port.

Bus Ride Boredom

August 18, 2010

Hi. We are in Tawau, Borneo. We got here via bus. We got tickets to Tawau from a f***er at tourist info. Turns out there was more than one bus and we got kicked off. So then we hitched another bus for another 100 ringgit. Then we stopped. Minutes later, I fell asleep (because it was a sleeper). I woke up with cramped legs. We were in the same place as we stopped.

There was a traffic jam, the vehicles ranging from 4x4s and buses to palm oil tankers and there was even a car transporter. So we get out of our bus (the aircon went the night before and it fried) and wished we had food. Voila, our conductor popped up and led us to a weeny little shop, later demanding a kiss on the cheek. Mum obliged. 😀  The shop  was tiny and made of wood and palm leaf.

On our way out we saw the tanker that had been blocking the road. We couldn’t see the driver. Then we had a huge stroke of luck and found a Tawau direct bus which accepted our tickets. Then they moved the tanker. 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀

Hook, Line And Sunk

August 5, 2010

I want to do archery. I am not strong enough for their longbows because the pull is about fifty pounds and I’m not quite strong enough to crank it all the way back. I am, however, strong enough for fishing.

Sure, fishing takes a while, and a degree of patience but it does have good results. I have caught a couple of fishes and put one in the fridge, putting the other back in our expensive resort’s pond.

My fish is pink with red fins and edible. The fish in question died in the fridge, poor creature never stood a chance. A while ago we spent ages trying to get the hook out. It is not a pretty sight to see a fish thrashing about with a hook in it’s mouth.

Fishing is not that hard, complex or even boring. In fact, it’s quite fun! As for the fish, we had the chef fry it and it tasted quite nice.

WOOT! Elephants!

June 25, 2010

Today we went to the elephant camp. We saw a show. An AMAZING show. There are not many shows where elephants play harmonicas, play football and paint pictures. At the elephant camp, most of the elephants each have their own flag (england, germany, korea, etc.) painted on them. After the show, we went to the elephant nursery where we saw a baby elephant.

After that we went to an orchid farm and I had a coke. Needless to say, it was enough adventure for one day.

Rollin’ Rollin’ Rollin’….

June 22, 2010

Xorbing. The best extreme sport ever. You feel an unearthly sensation when being rolled down a hill in a giant hamster-ball and splashing into a lake. It’s soft, inflatable, has safety harnesses and has 2 huge holes to get in and out. It’s also pretty warm.

But be careful; it’s soundproof and so if you get stuck (like I did) then don’t call for help; gesture for it. I really enjoyed it and reccomend it for ages 7-37 or thereabouts. Anyhoo, it’s great.

Trek

June 18, 2010

So here we are, a day after we did the jungle trek and came back in one piece.  Or thereabouts. I tripped over at one bit and almost got my eye poked out by a bamboo shoot. I had a go at spear fishing too, but the mask was the wrong shape for my high cheekbones. It was a really hard 45 km trek but normal for laos. :O

WOW

June 15, 2010

Seriously.. did anyone really believe that receptionist a single bit when he said “No road! No bus!”? We didn’t. But he meant it. We got on the bus only to find that the road was only partially built so we had to wait for them to fix it. Truly annoying. Result: we got in waaaay over schedule. Now we know why the old lady bagsied the floor.

Zombies

June 11, 2010

Zombie survival for n0obs

If you get stuck in a zombie epidemic:

  1. Get a weapon for close combat and a big gun or a more portable weapon or at least a makeshift one e.g. an aerosol + a lighter- voila, instant flamethrower.
  2. Get fit. No point in running if you’re a 35-stone slob.
  3. Zombies are dumb animals. They will never suspect a trap.
  4. Lights out. Zombies will be attracted by halogen.
  5. NO GAPING! Zombies may waste a little time and you must use these seconds to escape.
  6. Sleep safe. Fortify your sleeping place.
  7. No toys. This is a zombie apocalypse mate, luxuries can wait.
  8. Don’t hesitate. Have a weapon, have no conscience.
  9. Have backup. Stay near each other.
  10. Formulate a plan. Blind heroics will probably get you killed.

Incense

June 7, 2010

Today we got to see incense sticks being made.

  1. Gather the sticks and herbs.
  2. Sand the sticks and powderise the herbs.
  3. Switch on the machine.
  4. Load the powder into the vertical funnel-like bit of the machine.
  5. Shove the sticks into a horizontal funnel next to the cogs, yellow bit first.
  6. Make sure the stick breaks the laser.
  7. When the stick stops breaking the laser, use your finger.
  8. Put the finished stick on the rack to age.
  9. Put the surplus incense back in the vertical funnel.
  10. Repeat.

I know this because I had a go. 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀

Here’s a video of me doing it.

Junks Rock!

June 2, 2010

Ok, so we have just had an awesome junk tour on ha long bay and I am writing a post on it. My favourite was monkey island where the monkeys are friendly enough to eat from your hand and so know where your food will be hidden. Dad nearly got mugged by a hungry monkey.

However, this does not stop them from defending their kids. One actually hissed at me when I came too close. It was either food, or go away till you have some. I also went fishing. Sadly I don’t think fish like to bite moving lures. 😦