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Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia
Assalamualaikum. Writing all the way from Belgaum, Karnataka, India. Missing Malaysia so much. But everything is just perfectly fine here. India makes people not just live, but SURVIVE. :)

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Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Sabah Detour: almost like Going Overseas

Assalamualaikum people who are kind enough to open one tab to actually read what I post. Thanks a lot for not making my effort to blog a waste. Anyhow, I miss blogging wherever I go, and have been quite a long time since I last post anything.

AlhamduLiLLAH to Allah Almighty Lord for allowing me to join 4 other friends to detour Sabah. We planned early since our foundation at Puncak Alam, whereby Chrystine our Sabahan girlfriend was eagerly inviting us to visit her place in front of the math lecture hall at dear UiTM Puncak Alam. Firstly, Sara Salleh, Balqis Isa together with Azneeza Manan and Nurul Ashikin were about to tag along, but they cancelled on the bit of the last minute due to parents' objection and some due to the fact that they are now working. Therefore, only Azyan Amani, Dina Azureen, Eliza Amira, the group leader; Dina Syafiqah and I who managed to say YES for the adventure. Hehehe :D

Chronology of our Adventure

1. Woke up as early at 5 AM to get ready with things to bring along was a drench after a while of not doing so. Flight to Sabah was at 9 am but it is a must for everyone who are going on board to reach early to the airport in case of anything. Our take of was at LCCT as we took the airbus 3220 Air Asia to hoar like bird to the Land Below The Wind.  And my dad and I were the first among my friends to reach at LCCT so we headed to MCD for breakfast. As we finished, the others finally arrived with their respective dads and mom except for Eliza who came with Dina.

9 am we boarded into the plane whereby we only afford to pay for the economy seats, but still they were comfy. On the plane, there was a birthday surprise for a little girl named Nurin who turned 6. She got a buffet voucher at Residence Hotel KL. Then there was a game where we can get the same voucher, the question was how many seats are there on the plane. The clue was there are 31 rows and each row has 6 seats, so how many?? can you count? The answer is 180...:P How did it turned that way? Well, it's in the pamphlets.

Two hours of a boring flight, finally landed on at Terminal 2 Kota Kinabalu International Airport (KKIA). We were escorted by our tour guide name Abang Yus which until now my friends tend to fond him. -.-'

We were astonished by the Sabah bluish clean beach and seawater. Reached Kota Kinabalu the capital and it looked rather 'tak membangun' compared to here in Semenanjung. We searched for our hotel to shelter ourselves from hot sun and wet rainy days. And I found it first! City Park Inn was the place where we stayed for 5 days 4 nights. It was definitely The amazing '5 star' budget hotel we afford to stay in.

Quiet shocked with the room we got. Superbly 'JUST NICE' for the 5 of us. A double decker and two queen beds. But then, the aircond started to turn lunatic and made us sweating all over during the second day after visiting the Islands. So they gave us another room which was a bit smaller T.T. Oh yeah that night we managed to get Chrystine to join in. She can drive superbly although with manual. I felt little T.T. She was kind enough to attend us and brought us to dine at a nice place which I forgot its name but it was somewhere at the Double Six thingy. Yeah blame me for the ignorance T.T. Oh yes, she also brought us to Tanjung Aru that night for some chill out. Yet no close pictures with her since I didn't bring my camera. What ler....-,-'

2. Day two we headed towards the Islands. Pulau Sapi and Pulau Manukan. Not that far from Kota Kinabalu, around 20 minutes by super fast boat. The journey was amazing. Rasanya yang paling syok kut. Pulau Sapi was spectacular, boleh snorkelling sampai lebam, since we were provided with yellow goggles and life jackets. Seriously we can see and touch the fishes ! But stingray and sharks are a No No. We can only pass the spots with green balls if I wasn't mistaken. The others are dangerous, tempat bot lalu.

Oh at Pulau Sapi we met with this Sabahan guy who happened to be a rescuer. He moved around with a kayak and invited us to follow him to the middle of the sea. Only one person was allowed to follow him at once, I was the last one. So yes, I followed him, he brought me in the middle of the sea where corals more clearly. He told me I better dipped in to touch the corals and see more fishes. I hesitated but then he said I need no worry since I had the life jacket on. So yes, I dipped in, but got troubles with my goggles whereby the salty water kept rushing into my nose. It bothered me to dip deeper. When I tried to get back into the kayak, the rescuer tried to pull me up but he fell too. Hahahaha! The kayak went upside down. It was terrifying. I supported my upper body to the kayak but my I tend to step onto one big-rough coral reef. I was  scared, my feet bleed, but I managed to get onto the kayak at last. He brought me back to the shore. My friends were scared when they saw what happened from far. They thought I drowned. Alhamdulillah everything was super alright. God gives me another life!

After a heavy lunch which contains lotsa seafood and meats, we went for a banana boat riding. I think the ride was a bit too much for rm 40 per person. Bila balik Selangor, my dad told me you can get the ride for rm5 at Port Dickson. But hey here's the difference. At Pulau Sapi we had the ride in the middle of the blue sea, if I were to do it at PD, it can only be done near to the shore. Tak best ler ye dak?

Next was Pulau Manukan, and here is where you can find Taman Tunku Abd Rahman. Basically the beach and the sea are of the same kind of Pulau Sapi. But here. there's some chalets to rent for those who intend to stay overnight, but not us.

3. Started early at 8 am for a trip to Gunung Kinabalu and Poring Hotspring. The journey was a bit harsh with roads happened to be so narrow and berbelit2. Make sure bring along a plastic bag to puke if you might have road drunk. Anyhow, it was fun shopping at the Kundasang shopping spot, the prices are lower than that at Phillipines Market. Sadly, when we reached there, had some money deficit. So can't buy whatever we wanted even though the prices are better.

Arrived at Poring Hotspring around 11 something in the morning. It's hot here. Hot tubs are everywhere but some are not functioning and dirty. Many tourists especially the Chinese and Koreans. The water from the spring happened to be milky like milk when you try to collect it in your hands. And yes, the water is super hot, good for skin. Berendam lama pun takpe asalkan bayar RM 3.

Bored with hot water, my friends then wanted to try the river and the waterfall. We trekked the narrow pathway of the jungle to the nearest one which located around 400 m from the hot tubs. And wearing only a flip flop slipper my feet became easily tired. Sore people! While other friends wore shoes T.T this what happened if you forgot to bring a pair of sneakers or sport shoes...

The journey was super tiring. My friends were excited because the waterfall as if it belongs to us alone. No one else was at the spot. So yeah, it was worth a walk. 

Done with solat and etc, we headed to a Chinese Restaurant for lunch. It was included in our package. The place was nice but doubtful whether they served HALAL or not. Mom advised me to be extra careful even though the workers seemed like muslims wearing veils on their heads. There's no halal logo except for a saying says 'No Pork Served'. T.T. The dishes came late and we were mocking hungry. The food was extremely sedap but the portion was too little until after 2 hours later we felt hungry again. T.T

It was raining quite heavily and add up to the cold weather, I was shivering. Not only that I forgot to bring along a pair of closed shoes but I also tend to leave my sweater at home. Thanks to the extra fat, it helped me to overcome the chill and Azyan told me to transfer some to Dinas who is damn thin. Hehehe. I told you being fat somehow beneficial.

Visited a market full with fruits and vegies. Couldn't buy any vegies because we can't cook in our hotel. Bought some cut fruits, sadly the fruits started to smell funny the next day and we realised how we lost RM 5 for the fruits. TSK TSK. Back home, mom advised, next time, buy fruits with their skins on and not the cut ones. I repent, mom. hehee.

Kabus menghalang pemandangan yang cantik. Well, my mom said the mountain looks nice in the morning midst. Unfortunately, we arrived at the spot in the mid day, thus the view jeopardized a bit. We went up till the veranda where the tourguide told us that it is actually a place where you would get your permit to climb up. And of course we didn't manage to climb up because it needs another RM 400 for that, plus we had no suitable attires on. No wonder the climbers stared at us strangely.

Took another 3 hours to reach Kota Kinabalu. It was nauseous along the journey. But before we went to sleep, we took our night out to the Night Market which located at the back block of our hotel. One more shopping spot, to find beads, more pearls and some GOLOK branded stuff. Not interesting though.

4. Paid another RM 170... TSK TSK...seriously too expensive...for what? For our one day experience to see the Monyet Belanda and fireflies. At first, the tour guide, Mr Yus, recommended us to go for rafting. I felt scared because the main reason I had no other clothes to wear since my wet attire went missing blew by the wind. But then, I didn't know by what chance that we ended up paying the same amount for the river cruise. 

We headed to a place called Sungai Kias if I wasn't mistaken, took a boat to a cruise in the middle of the river and spent the whole afternoon and half our evening on it. The cruise was okay....we did see the monyet belanda with the long red nose but we mostly saw their buttocks on the tall trees. Tried to captured it into photos, sadly, they became quite blurred since we viewed from far. At night, we had seafood and rice for dinner, which was delicious. Did see fireflies but not as blazingly lighten as what I saw in the TNB ad on TV ....tsk tsk. One thing that happened was that, my friend managed to catch one firefly and put it inside a bottle, plus there's one which followed us into the van to KK.

5. Last day of our vacation we had no good activities to mention. Spent longer time to sleep till brunch hours and packed our things up to return to Peninsular. We needed to check out at 1 pm but the tour guide would only pick us up to the terminal at 6 pm. We left our handful luggages at the receptionist, planned to walk around town but it rained heavily. Sat down at the lobby where thank GOD there's HBO. Watched Anaconda for a whole while waiting for the rain to stop. Then we had lunch at one mamak restaurant called Mohaidin something even though Eliza and Dina wanted to have KFC Cheesy Wedges. I insisted to go to mamak because I thought the price will be lower but I was wrong. The mamak taukey cheated and everyone's food cost RM6.50 even though some of us took lesser food than the other. Sorry guys!!

Fulled with nice lunch, we then took a walk to the wet market to find prawns for Dina. We were actually searching for the Sunday Market but ended up taking pictures by the sea. Gone for another last shopping spree at the Phillipines Market. Needed to quench our thirst, we went down the food bazaar next to the Phillipines' Market where you can get many grilled food and fresh coconut juices. Sat down for some drinks and then walked again to find the prawns but no prawns were found nearby the food stalls. Dina wanted to buy prawns at the first shop we stopped by but sadly the shop closed. She looked rather down so we continue the adventure for prawn seeking. At last, Alhamdulillah she found one shop nearby the KK Big Market and bought prawns with a big smile on the face. We were glad. 

At 5 pm, Mr Yus arrived to pick us up to the terminal. Before that, he was kind enough to bring us to the beach near Sutera Harbour and next time if you have more money, you can rent and stay at the five star hotels around Sutera Harbour, said myself to myself. Hahahah. Took our last memoir photos with MR Yus by the beach but we were a bit frustrated not to visit the Bajau Laut houses which floats on the sea water. Maybe next time...

Our flight boarded off to KL around 9 pm, with Air Asia. And we bid farewell to Sabah and its people. It has been awesome, especially with our friends along. I sat with Azyan Amani on the flight, but the others sat quite far at the back so the 2 hours flight seemed a bit boring without the other three girls. Hahaha.

Finally, we needed to go home fast since the parents were already waiting at the terminal. My dad and mom and sister were there since 9 pm so they nagged me for lateness. Couldn't hide the bad feeling had to leave my friends, the ever good friends I had. Hope to see them all again next time. Insha Allah.

>>>p/s: to be continued, tips for BETTER holidays. Something I learn myself from my mistakes, T.T<<<

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