Stalactites, stalacmites and stalac-frights

Trip Start Mar 13, 2007
Trip End Mar 28, 2007

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Flag of Malaysia  ,
Monday, March 19, 2007

During that trip, we hatched a plan with "our Swedish mates" to head north to explore the jungles and caves of Sarawak so after another night in Kuching we hopped on the night bus to Miri - 15 hours north.  At first we were thrilled with our front seats because they had more leg room and a footstool we could prop up to stretch out on, settling in and setting off however, we realised that most of our attention would be focused on our driven who had a suspiciously droopy head.  Feeling the full responsibility for the other passengers, since we were the only ones who could see him seemingly nodding off behind the wheel, our nerves were in tatters.  Thankfully it wasnt' too long before the first stop and change over of drivers, the other one had been getting some quality shut-eye on the seat next to us so we know we'd be ok.  The nerves were to be tested slightly longer as each time our "luxury" bus came to a halt, the bugs came out of hiding to forage around for what ever crumbs had been spilled on the way.   Yuk!  We flicked, squished and sprayed what we could until we sorta got used to it and relaxed enough to fall asleep.  After that, it was probably the most comfortable bus journey we've had.  We overnighted in Miri, that was enough, too much even there is not a whole lot to do there and it was a challenge to find somewhere that had decent food and a cold beer.  Miri will also be etched in our minds for the worst foot massage that it's probably possible to get.  Ouch!  Anyway, we'd decided to go up to Guning Mulu National Park to check out the flora and fauna up that way and The Swedes were gonna check out the bat caves nearer Miri.  Shame for them, they had to spend another night there.  We got ourselves to the airport and onto the 50 seat Fokker that would take us into the national park.  We were very excited to be booked into one of the "Rainforest Rooms" in the park and looked forward to living in the wilderness.

The park area was very well protected so we had to have a guide pretty much everywhere we went, but we saw some very cool stuff while we were there and enjoyed being out of the city and in the fresh air.  A few days worth of exploring caves, the jungle from a canopy walk and at night and we were ready to move on again, this time through Kota Kinabalu and around to Sepilok where we'd meet Victor and Linda before getting back into the Jungle with Uncle Tan.  That was a race against time, arriving at the airport only had an hour to get money, food and a bus across town to pick up our ride to Sepilok.  It seemed like mission impossible, but it all came together very nicely thank you very much, and all just before the rain crashed down.  So we were fed, cashed up and on our bus to Sepilok - it was a beautiful journey, if a bit scary in places, with very steep slopes on both sides of the road part of the way.  We arrived at night and got reacquainted with The Swedes over a bottle of duty free Cointreau.
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