off to play robinson crusoe

we rested for the most part of today – waking up at 3:00pm recovering from our journey here. Sarah and Martins house has an excellent veranda, I love spending time lying in a hammock reading on it – which is exactly what I did for the rest of the afternoon.

I am currently reading ‘the Rampart Worlds’ by Julian May. she is one of my favourite authors and I am thouroughly enjoying the first book of this set called ‘Perseus Spur’.

we are spending the weekend on an island called Sibu off of the eastern Malaysian coast. we’ve been there once before and really enjoyed it. it really is a grass hut on the beach affair. admitidly they are very nice huts with wooden floors, mosquito nets and showers – but they still give a great feeling of living on a tropical island.

as always we drove. Sarah and Martin have a Landrover Freelander which is very comfortable to travel in. we set off from Singapore at about 6:30pm and rapidly reached Malaysian soil (which lies just the other end of a causeway from Singapore). The part of Malaysia we drive through to get to Sibu is a complete contrast to Singapore. it is full of colourful shops, small open sided cafes (marked by stip lights on sticks at the side of the road) and palm oil plantations. it really does feel far from home when travelling there.

the journey took about two and a half hours which seemed to mainly invole dodging slow moving truck, coaches and the local population on mopeds (which along side Proton cars seem to be the main transport in Malaysia). our destination was a car park next to a jetty apparently in the middle of no where where we leave the car and catch a boat for the island.

the boat was due to pick us up at 9:00pm and both we and it were pretty much on time. we set off on my favourite part of the journey, the half hour boat trip to Rimba Resort. the boat is a fairly small fibreglass afair with a pair of large yamaha (85 ?) outboard motors on the back. as we leave the harbour the driver/pilot/captain ? opens up the throttles and we are off. the warm sea breeze streaming through our hair as we head out across the South China Sea into darkness is a magical feeling. My sister pointed out to me phosphoresent sea creatures in the spray fom the boat which occasionally blew over us.

we got to the Rimba Resort at low tide which meant that the boat had to make its way into the bay carefully as there are lots of shallow coral reefs that could do it a mischief. when we reach the beach we jump out of the boat into knee deep warm water and make our way onto the white sandy beach.

the resort is a series of huts spread out on the shoreline along the length of the beach. there are no roads, phone lines or power lines simply a path that runs the length of the huts and a generator back in the woods to provide electricity. I have no idea where the fresh water comes from but a sign in our shower declares that it is a ‘precious resource’. in the middle of the resort there are two larger buildings (like the huts made from wood and banana leaves ?) which are the restaurant and the bar.

we dumped our stuff in our huts and headed straight for the restaurant for our evening meal after which we headed for the bar. the bar is one large ‘hut’ for want of a better word the point of the roof being about 5 or 6 meters high and the wooden floor covered with scatter cusions. we ordered a round of bloody marys (a bit of a speciality of the house) and played jenga for a while before going to bed at about 11:00pm.

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