Thursday, February 18, 2010

Base Camp @ Austrian Embassy ;-)

After a wonderful long weekend in Taman Negara, the world's oldest rainforest (blog to follow!), I come back to Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday evening.

Doing a quick review of my situation, I decide it's best to move out from the place where I live - kinda outside the city - and stay in downtown for these couple of days left! No sooner said than done, spontaneous as I am i spend about half the night packing and early Wednesday morning take a cab to Wisma Goldhill where the Austrian Embassy is located. With the wholekit and caboodle - meaning a HUGE backpack, my lil' red suitcase and some 4 bags - I enter the building *hahaha*
Yep, and that is how it came that my "base camp" now is in here :-)

Well, my last nights here in KL I spend partying - what else?! ...and so I am a bit tired today after a looong ladies night
(with lotsa head-scratching at the weekly quiz nights with my most favourite brainteaser buddy Ash) 
that somehow never ended until I went back to the office at 8 in the morning :-)

Was delighted by a surprise overseas call from a nice friend last night who found my emails I sent during the last 8 months in his spam-folder ... *thx, was so good talking to you*

Furthermore - couldn't believe it when Geri yesterday told me that the recent "Mardi Gras" celebrations are the reason for the "crackdown" of his voice ... Carnival?? What, when was that?? I can't believe it, amidst all the crazy Chinese New Year celebrations I completely missed our Western custom of costume parties. Well, out of sight out of mind, or how was that?
Anyways, welcome to the Year of the Tiger - I wish you all good luck!!

Other updates from my side:
Fly to Singapore Friday in the morning to meet my mum, Helga and Margit who are scheduled for arrival in the afternoon *jipppie* Still can't believe it!!
We will spend the weekend in Singapore, head back to KL for a week and afterwards relax on the beautiful island of Langkawi. The end of our trip will be in Bangkok from where we take the plane back to VIENNA ... finally, good old Europe is calling :-))

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

No shoes, no shirt, no problems...

...also known as travelling on a shoestring :-)

And this kind of trip was it indeed, my weekend on the island of Pulau Pangkor.

jumping over sandbanks - hilarious!

eating baby lobsters alive fresh out of the sea :-)

sleeping in da hammock :-)

Hornbill birds wake me up in the morning :-)

As Monday was Territory Day in Kuala lumpur, I had a long weekend and so I took a 4-hour-bus ride on Friday afternoon for a short get-away from the city.
After a first night in the company of Tan and his girlfriend who showed me around on the island (Taoist Temple, Dutch Fort, lonely beaches, a wonderful full-moon ession @ the Strait of Melaka and delicous breaky in the local village - coconut chili soyabean sprout prawn soup) and offered me to stay at their place for the first night due to my late arrival (perfect timing - caught the last ferry!)!
*謝謝 TAN, 很]高興的*

Next day I made myself home in a small bay, full of food stalls, bars, nice locals and some travellers.

As mentioned before, it's a long weekend and therefore all budget accomodation is booked out :-(   In fact, I think the receptionist is joking when he tells me his cheapest room is 126 Malaysian Ringgit, which is about €30 *g*
Pah...after some search I find a real nice guest house w/ inner yard where they have hammocks...aha, I don't need to think long - of course I go for the hammock :-)
It's wonderful to sleep outside and listen to the sounds of the jungle, which is surrounding the guesthouse. In the morning I wake up from the noise of some hornbill birds, landing on the roof of one of the huts. Monkeys + squirrels are jumping around in the trees, I observe a colibri who is slightly confused about seeing himself in front of a mirror and tries to fight his "vis-a-vis" *hahaha*

I get to know the locals, the "Islandboyzs" and they offer me to come w/ 'em on their boat. Yippie - jumping over a sandbank by boat and going under a bridge towards the jungle - on a still river surrounded by lush green rainforest!
Back in the bay, they demonstrate how to catch white baby lobsters who come in with every wave and can be found in the sand. And the best thing - we EAT these baby LOBSTERS...gosh, I have never before eaten any animal ALIVE!!! ...tastes good though, crunchy and even a little sweet - just a weird feeling to put this fidget, or Zappelphilipp as we would say in German, into my jaw ;-))

Pang, a 40-year old sailor looking like a pirate is a real nice fellow, currently living on the island working on his beach bar that he plans to build up, literally from scratch ... if I had stayed longer I would be in the jungle now -recruited redneck woman :)- cutting out some bamboo wood in order to construct the furniture *hihihi* 

Pang is a bit worried about me, sleeping alone outside in the hammock and therefore decides to stay in the one next to me. His cute baby puppies Blacky&Brownie are happy to have the matress for themselves :-)
I am eagerly listening to Pang's exciting life story and adventures he experienced on the sea, sailing all over the Indian Ocean and the Southern Pacific region.
It's his dream to sail around the world on his own boat...
...all of a sudden I ask myself - why did I never realize this one childhood idea of mine to live just like Pippi Longstocking w/ her monkey Mr. Nilsson, the horse Old Man, lotsa crazy funny ideas, sailing across the oceans of this planet w/ her pirate daddy ;-)))  and living in her wacky house Villa Villekulla respectively!

*ui, what wonderful sweet Pippi Longstocking dreams*
*in this hammock*

Next morning, Pang takes me w/ him in the kayak to the mini Robinson Crusoe Island which we expolore - climbing up rocks with the help of a liana rope, getting down on the other side and snorkel back, surrounding the island.
What a great adventure! Thank you very much Pang, I will never forget these awesome days and the highly interesting talks we shared. Your sweet morning coffees started a perfect day, sipping palm wine together was fun and I really appreciated that you drove me back to the jetty on your motorbike!

This weekend showed me again, u don't need to invest a lot of money in order to enjoy some great, exciting adventures. It can be so much more rewarding to indulge entirely in the culture, meet people, enjoy their great hospitality, share interesting talks and hear about background stories, try out new things and be ready for different modi operandi than those u r used to for years!

What an amazing weekend!


*have fun watching* :))