Monday, January 26, 2009

Friday, January 23, 2009

Penang hill solo hike

Woke up at 9.30am today, was supposed to wake up earlier for my hike up to Penang Hill. Got up and quickly rush out. It took me about 30 minutes walk to reach the starting point, a temple right next to the clinic my aunt brought me for a jab in the bum, thank goodness it doesn't hurts as much now.

I wasn't sure about the trail at first but all I know is that my starting is behind a temple and I must cut through a few farms. Try my luck and took a small trail which I think could be the most likely way.

Only 10 minutes from the starting point I could feel the zen in the place, there were monks walking pass and stuff. After passing the temple path I found myself near a farm house with dogs barking as I go nearer. Not good I thought, time to get a stick.
As I was lookin for my weapon a dog came nearer and nearer, once I manage to find myself a stick. The dog was already next to me, nibbling on the stick I just picked up at the same time it's pulling the stick playfully. Played a little tug-of-war with the fella and for some reason I felt as if it's asking me to follow him, and strangly I did.

For more then an hour I followed the dog, taking every path it took. I was actually asking myself, what the heck is this dalmation doing in this part of the world and where is it leading me to?

It is when we arrive at this rock that I realized where is it taking me. I'm on the right path and there is no question about it. All thanks to this spotted mutt.

We walked on in the sun no shade and it's hot as hell. Since most of the path crosses the farms, the luxury of having tall trees to provide shade is kinda out of the question. The farmers wants the sun for their plants so all trees gotta be out of the way, at least that's the case for the first leg of the trip. The sun really gave me quite a beating, at one point I even considered turning back and try it again another time when it's not that hot but this is Penang, it's always hot here.
The dog lead me all the way to a tree at a split road 2 arrows are nailed on the tree giving directions, and that's where the dog left me, I took the trail and head for Penang Hill as it goes back down.

I continued on and walked for god knows how long, found myself at some bungalows. That when I knew that I'm now very near my destination. The ice kachang stall on Penang hill. Not the best but it will do for a tired hiker like me. (don't try the one at stall number 888, not happening)

My first time hiking up to Penang Hill and I learned an important lesson, the botanical garden have a much shady trail which is nicer and more cooling, don't be a hero and walk across the farms unless you wanna meet the kind spotted mutt.

Have a Great Day,

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Crazy Bee

Arrived on Penang Island at 1.30am yet decided to follow my aunt and my mom to Air Hitam dam for a morning walk. I knew that it's going to be too easy for me so I decided to hike up to Penang hill right after that.
The people here are quite anti social I think, I could be wrong but if you've been to Kiara hill for a walk you get greeted by some of the joggers. It does makes the walk more pleasing. Or maybe I'm just crazy, I did greet them all anyway.
I decided to use a route not far away from the dam to start my journey to Penang Hill, still I got to accompany my mom and aunt to the car.
On the way there I felt a sharp pain on my neck. Something was sting or citing me, I flick the thing off without knowing what I'm dealing with.
The pain grew to become more annoying, felt like I've been stung by a bee. I got no idea if the sting is still there or not so I got my mom to check it for me while my aunt go 'Quickly go to the clinic! This one cannot play a fool one ar!' there goes my plan for Penang hill the bee choose a perfect time to ruin my plan, right when my kan chong aunt is around.
Well at least I had fun disturbing my aunt while on the way to the clinic, pretending than my hands are numb and kept asking if my head is falling off. At least until when the doctor said that he's giving me a lab.

Have a Great Day

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

An Expensive Sleep

Had an expensive sleep yesterday, was so tired that I forgotten to take off my glasses before I sleep and when I woke up I found it broken...
Brought it in to the shop to have it fixed up before I leave for Penang tomorrow, I basically bought a new pair of frame and have the lenses moved over, even this will take a day because the lenses needed to be trimmed in order to fit the new pair of glasses.

Have a Great Day

The City of Cats

Just returned after spending a few days in Kuching, Sarawak. It's my first time visiting that part of the country and I can proudly say that I've visited all thirteen states. A few days before I leave for Kuching I was already warned that it's been raining non stop for days and some parts of the city are already flooding, my mother even told me to forget about the trip but the one thing that my mother know about me is that I hardly listens to her.
I arrive in Kuching at about 11pm, when the plane landed the runway was wet but it wasn't raining however it started to rain when the plane was docking.

3-Days Wet Shoes

On my first day there Linus drove me around town to see stuffs ranging from the Cat monument to Gambir Sarawak (You don't want to know), it was still raining on and off the roads were never dry so my activities were limited to indoor stuff like visiting the Kuching Aquarium and Museum.
Apart from that I did do some souvenir shopping and have a couple of drinks before the end of the day.

Real skulls in the museum exhibit

We started early on the following day, I got dragged to church for morning mass, it's incredible that there are people attending church at 6 A.M. in the morning. The rest of the day was spent shooting Linus' short film, you can read more about it in his blog since he had already written about it and I'm pretty lazy to write more, quite sleepy now actually... Yawn...~!

Sago Grubs washed and ready to be cooked

The highlight of my trip has to be the Sago Worms, I read somewhere that Sarawak is quite well known for these tasty grubs and I personally made it a point that I would try them. Bought a dozen at the Sunday Market to try, thanks to Linus' mom we all had deep fried grubs for dinner that night.

Another highlight of the trip was to see the Orang Utan in Semengoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Sanctuary, even thou I've seen Orang Utans in the zoo before but its another thing to see them roaming freely in the wild, we arrived at the feeding area and saw an Orang Utan already there waiting for food. The guide then lead us to another feeding area hoping that we'll get to see more Orang Utans there however the Orang Utans had different plans. In all I seen about 2 Orang Utans and about 3 more from far away and I mean really really far up in the trees but it was still worth it I say.
I must say that I did enjoy my trip despite the rain, to be able to see new places, meet new friends and gain new experience, there is nothing better then that.

Have A Great Day

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Tick Tock Tick Tock

Stumble upon my old watch while doing some cleaning up involving a huge pile of clothes and a lorry full of old furniture, it's amazing how much junk a family can collect. Back to the watch, it's actually not an old watch but it's a birthday gift from my mom 2 years back, I wear it for quite some time but stopped wearing it sometime early last year, never had that habit of wearing a watch anyway so left it at a corner collecting dust.
After dusting and cleaning the watch, I set the time and wind it up and see if it still works, as soon as I push the dial in, the sweeping hand starts to move, it's ALIVE!!!
I stare at it for a while, keeping my eyes on the movement of the minute hand. It's moving for sure but instead of noticing that the watch is working fine, I noticed how fast the minute hand is actually going from 20 it continue towards 25 and before I know it, I just lost 5 minutes... and how much time had I wasted before I realized this? All I can say now is "Damn...".
Time is running out gotta get ready for my flight now.

Have a Great Day

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Gaza War on Children

It's hard to find a place that is truly safe now, the news about the mortar shelling that killed at least 30 people (mostly children) near a U.N. school confirms it.
Who's right or who's wrong , it doesn't matter no more.
To be able to move on without causing anymore suffering and deaths should be the number one priority

contact Mercy Malaysia at 03-2273 3999, or email to and find out how best you can help raise funds for medical aid that can help save the lives of wounded children in Gaza.

Pray for the children

Monday, January 5, 2009

Good Bye Pax

Got a phone call on New Year morning, never expect my 1st phone call recieve for the year 2009 would be one that brings bad news.
I got myself washed up, and left home, picked up Linus and headed for a friend's house.
By the time we reach the place. We were told to go to a vet near by the area. Our friend was there waiting already, with the motionless body of Pax who was once hyper active.
Pax is a Jack russel terrier that was actually bought from a pet shop by a friend. I actually consider it an adoption because Pax was actually already bought by another person who actually paid for him but didn't return to collect and was later bought by our friend at a price I never imagine.
Pax seems to be doing alright but until one point I started to learn that Pax is having some problems, then the phone call came.

Rest in Peace Pax.
Hope that someone will play fetch with you up there.

All dogs go to heaven

Perak Trip Part 3: Surfing the Gopeng way

1 night spent sleeping out in the open, didn't sleep in the tent because there ain't enough room so I choose to sleep outside. I can't remember the last time i did that but I do remember doing it only to find how beautiful the night sky actually is, we humans with our buildings, cars, and pollution made it hard it see in the city.
Well, we all woke up to a morning of fresh and cooling air. Once everyone had their breakfast it was time to pack up, time to leave to meet our next guide.
We found ourselves at a housing estate but we are no where near the Gopeng river. Convoy lead stopped in front of a house signaling us that we've arrived and we should park our cars.
It is after I walked in to the house I only realised that this it the base for our guides the dudes from jungle geckos. We are all going to be geared up here, we are all given a kevlar padded wetsuit, helmet, life jacket, diving boots and flippers. Once we are all geared up, we are all put on to the back of a lorry with the boards that we'll be using later.

So, after some tree branch evading workout we arrived at the destination near MyGopeng resort, there were 14 of us so we'll be going in 2 groups. For some reason I got myself on the first group and I get to go in to the river first, after the guide gave us a briefing it was time to go, holding the board in front of me, I jumped in to the river where the current is the strongest and started as I was told.
I manage to reach the checkpoint the guide mentioned but some of the people in my group find it to be a little too challenging. So before we go on we were given a water kicking lesson.

It looks quite easy but doing it is actually quite tiring. At all time we must hold on to our boards even if it turn upside down, we also got to know the right time to kick specially when we get stuck and going in circles, for the guys we had an additional thing to worry about, we were told to open our legs when the board go above a rock or else we'll suffer intense pain or worst possible become the ending twig on the family tree.

I don't remember how long were we in the river riding the current but I'll tell you that it is both scary and fun when it comes to a rapid drop. There is no way to stop when that comes, all you could do is to hang on close to your board and brace yourself.
I'm definately going back for this one.

Have a Great Day

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Perak Trip Part 2: The Communist Cave

After visiting the Cathedral cave, we drove to Chemor town for some real good fish noodles, but then that's not really important to me, the journey to Perak actually became a testing ground for my new GPS capable cellphone.
Yes! I had GPS on most of the time while driving and even thou I am not required to lead the convoy but I found the need to familiarized with the capabilities of my cellphone, thou everyone believe that I've become obsess with it.

So after our meal, we drove our way to Ipoh for the famous salted chicken (Yim Kok Kai), traffic at that time was really bad and it's was really hard for me to stick to the convoy as cars kept on cutting in and out of lanes, attempts to keep up with the convoy proved to be futile. I'm not too sure but I think Aurelius was starting to get worried because he knows that I'm very particular when it comes to traveling in a convoy, little did he know that I was happily by the road side setting the GPS to guide me to the destination. It's a miracle that device I tell you, it's like a guiding star for lost sailors... erm... anyway we quickly regroup, got our salted chicken and head to south for the next leg or our trip.
Our destination is actually Gua Kandu located in Gopeng roughly 20km off Ipoh. We meet up with our guide Botak who then lead us to the mouth of the cave, the place where we are all going to be camping for the night.

Botak was real quick in getting us to pitch our tents, it seems that he's got that thing in getting everyone to work together as a team to do various task, it didn't took us long to pitch the tents, assigning tent occupants and get a whole lot of fire wood while Botak prepare the food for us.
After having our "snack" Botak's partner came by to bring us for a tour inside the cave.

The passage in gua Kandu is big enough for a person to walk into, making it quite an easy walk at the start but it does becomes a little more challenging later in to the cave when climbing up steep walks becomes necessary. As we walk, the guide begin to tell us about the history of the cave, it seems that after the second world war the communist used this cave as hideout, I'm not to sure how real it was but one thing was sure to e real to me, the amount of graffiti in the cave...

There were quite some interesting things to see and do in that cave, but I really need to go to bed now and I rather not spoil it for anyone, so I'll just leave you hanging right here.
Good night

Have A Great Day,

Thursday, January 1, 2009