Hitchin' a ride

Trip Start Mar 10, 2007
Trip End Jan 01, 2007

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Flag of Malaysia  ,
Monday, October 8, 2007

So Nazim picked us up around midday for our 3 hour bus to sukau, along terrible dirt roads stopping several times to buy fruit and food for when they broke their fast in the evening. I did learn a lot from Nazim on this journey, he was a really nice guy and he even showed me the local durian, with bright red flesh (red like a baboons arse, thats the only way i can describe it). I promised him I'd try durian ice cream in Semporna (i just did, and Corrin it really tastes like durian, imagine that.)
         Arriving at Sukau B&B was nice, it is located at the very end of a small kampung (village) along the banks of the Kinabatangan River and had a very relaxed, jungle lodge atmosphere. Me and Simon quickly ate our packed lunches, then set off on an afternoon river cruise.
The cruise was really quite enjoyable, just me Simon and our boat driver, cruising down the river spotting various types of Macaques (long and short tailed i think), the now not so elusive proboscis monkey, a couple of crocodiles, some kind of kingfisher and other birds, even some orang utans, albeit from a very large distance. The scenery was beautiful as well and the only thing that spoilt it was the fact that there must have been 20 other boats on the river doing practically the same cruise at the same time, and also that the guy driving our boat spoke little English, so we got very little info from him (unlike the boats we could hear around us).
      Getting back to the hostel, we found Dirk sitting there (a traveler from Holland who we have been meeting up with along the way, who i travelled from Johor Bahru to Bako with) and we went on the morning cruise with him the following day.
        Acting as the human alarm clock (why is it no one but me can wake up early?)  woke the others up for our 6am boat cruise. With the serene atmosphere and the mist rising up off of the water, it made a very promising start to our cruise. Our driver for today also spoke pretty good English, and when we quickly spotted the proboscis, he began to reel off the facts about them.
Lesson time kiddies, look away now to avoid learning.
1. The Proboscis monkey looks so fat because it has two stomachs, one for digesting normal food and one for poisonous leaves and berries.
2. The monkeys travel and live in Packs of two types, one pack will be only females (with one male i think) and th other type is a family group, with a dominant male, several smaller males and some females.
OK Kiddies, schools out, you can come back now
The cruise however was a bit of a disappointment; much less animals were sighted and again it was very crowded, though we did see hornbills today.
    Leaving Sukau B & B, we weren't prepared to pay the ridiculous fees they wanted to drive us to the main road, so we walked into town, deciding to try our luck hitchin. First car we passed, the guy agreed to take us to the junction for 7rm each, a bargain. Once at the junction, our luck continued, after standing there in traditional hitch hiker pose for less than 5 mins, a guy with a sparkling new range rover picked us up, and took us 200km in his air con car, for FREE! we were having a lucky day it seems.
       So he was going to tawau, so he dropped us at the Semporna/Tawau junction, where a minicab driver instantly stopped and said he'd take us to Semporna for 10rm each.Not too shabby by any means, but we felt we could get a better offer, so we told him to drive on. Less than two minutes later, a lady in a pickup stops and picks us up for free again! Speeding down the road to Semporna, we speed past the minivan driver, laughing our heads off at his angry face (he was annoyed when we said 10rm wasn't good enough), and made it there in no time. 300KM on 7rm, now thats a bargain!
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