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2012 is blue. Happy blue year!

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Posté par cschitter 05:11 Commentaires (3)

Borneo from above

Flying to Bario on a tiny plane. The horizon was filled half the way with palm oil fields (2nd picture below)...
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From Bario to Pa Lungan, a small village in the Kelabit Hills without electricty. Perfect place to chill out watching the rain...
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...and that rain made the path a tad muddier on the way back:
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Flying to the Gunung Mulu National Park with its canopy walk and waterfall.
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And the biggest cave in the world - difficult to put on scale on the pictures, but it is huuuuge !
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3 million bats live in there, and they come out at dusk:
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And some more big insects and other creatures
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Sunsets at Kota Kinabalu
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There is a famous trek in Borneo not involving (to much) jungle, humidity and leeches, and it is the climb of Mount Kinabalu (4096m).
One problem is that the two days climb is really expensive. You have to pay for the park entrance, the climbing permit, the insurance, the guide and the accommodation. Mark (an English guy who shared my adventures in Borneo) figured out that the accommodation alone was 100 euros for a night in a lousy dormitory including food... We figured out also that it is possible to climb the mountain in one day by starting early in the morning, and that was exactly what we did...
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The other problem is that the climb starts at little below 1900m and ends at 4095m, which makes a big big journey up, adding the rarefaction of oxygen due to altitude and an even bigger one down never-ending steps... On that way down, Mark taught me new English swear words to throw at the steps while I was bitting my tongue to diverse the pain from my knees. We ended up knackered, but happy as we were rewarded with the most fantastic view from the top. Very well done us!
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And you can imagine that the money saved was wisely spent.
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I had an amazing journey in Borneo, and again, I wish to come back. Farewell wild Borneo !

Posté par cschitter 00:53 Archivé dans Malaisie Commentaires (3)

Hey Santa Claus, look at that chimney now!

Merry Christmas !!!

Posté par cschitter 07:26 Archivé dans Indonésie Commentaires (0)

What is the capital of Brunei ?

In the middle of the Malaysian part of Borneo lies Brunei. I spent a day there on my way north to Kota Kinabalu...
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There is a nice mosq...
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...but right behind live the poors in the water village
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There is also a ridiculous museum a about the sultan, from his childhood to the coronation, and all gifts he received from other states. Pictures were not allowed - probably because it was so embarrassing to him...

Asking a local guy why the sultan does not share his money with the poor people living in the water village, the answer was "oh, he tried, but the poor do not know how to spend the money and do stupid things. So it's better not to give them...".
He obviously knows that much better:
According to wikipedia, "The Sultan is the owner of 531 Mercedes-Benzes, 367 Ferraris, 362 Bentleys, 185 BMWs, 177 Jaguars, 160 Porsches, 130 Rolls-Royces and 20 Lamborghinis, bringing the total number of cars he owns to 1932."

And this is where the Sultan's wealth is coming from:
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Although I was glad to male a quick stop in Brunei, I cannot say I really liked the place too much because it was dull, with almost empty streets, big car going probably just in circles around the city (petrol costs nothing). And probably also because drinking beer is not allowed.

Oh yes, and the capital of Brunei is: Bandar Seri Begawan. Knowing this could just help you winning your next trivial pursuit game !

Posté par cschitter 23:26 Archivé dans Brunei Commentaires (2)

rain + forest = rainforest in Borneo

As it was still monsoon in Malaysia, I got a lot of rain. A lot of forest too. And a lot a lot more...

Here are the pictures from the Bako National Park:
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A night walk in the jungle; we were lucky enough to spot a wild cat and flying lemur, but I could not catch them on a pictures. Here are several bugs, spiders, frogs and a sleeping kingfisher.
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Proboscis monkey ('nasique' in french). Cute.
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A night walk in the jungle; we were lucky enough to spot a wild cat and [ ]. Could take a pictures, but I got several bugs, spiders, frogs and a sleeping kingfisher.
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Back to Kuching, some longhouses - big houses made of wood.
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And at the Semenggoh Wildlife Centre the superstars of the forest.
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Moved then to Miri for more jungle trekking at the Lambir Hills National Park, in the rain this time... The umbrella does not really help, but it makes me look more British. With the humidity, my clothes were entirely wet with no hope of drying. Sweet.
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Some machines near an old oil well
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... and guess who is coming out when the rain stops ?
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At least, I am bringing my contribution to the help the ecosystem...

The massively big Niah Caves:
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A market in Miri with small sharks to buy.
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At least, the shrimps and the frogs are fresh in this Chinese restaurant !
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After all those adventures, I needed one of these two - I'll let you guess which one I chose...
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Posté par cschitter 23:48 Archivé dans Malaisie Commentaires (0)

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