So much to do....

Trip Start Dec 28, 2010
Trip End Jun 08, 2012

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Where I stayed

Flag of Malaysia  , Sabah,
Friday, May 20, 2011

After a 6hr bus ride feeling pretty ropey we arrived in Sandakan. We both thought Sandakan seemed like a really nice friendly place. I'd spotted a small sports area on our way in on the bus with a football field surrounded by a running track and other courts. Damn, barney spotted it too. 'oh look we can go for a run there!' fantastic! that's exactly what I came to Borneo for, I knew he would say that.

Our first concern though was whale sharks and diving. We turned up at the  Mayfair hotel. I really loved the guy here, he reminded me of the old Chinese guy in Singapore, funny and full of useful info. The place was better than expected, usually budget places found in the lonely planet get more expensive or their standards slip. This place had all we could ask for for 50rm (10), 32" panasonic tv, DVD, wifi, hot shower & a pizza hut menu!! He also had downstairs a range of DVDs categorised into Bruce willis, Arnie,action, comedies etc, & my old time eighties favourite Jean claude van Damme also featured (really the only reason to go back.)
We enquired about Lankayan finding out that it's pretty expensive, and the more research we did the smaller the chance of seeing whale sharks was. That left us thinking there was really only one place to go if whale sharks was out of the question, Sipadan! 

Once everything was booked we headed out for an evening run. There was a real sense of community in Sandakan. The field was full with footballers, and around the pitch were other groups, there were kids learning taekwondo, ladies playing netball, guys playing basketball and people playing volleyball. Then you had people watching the various sports and a patch were kids were just kicking a ball about or riding around, there were a few old guys walking the track 'Harold bishop style'. Then us foreigners about to try our first run in a few weeks. For an evening it was still pretty hot out and I stupidly forgot water. I think I managed about 11 laps and Barney 15 and then gave up feeling pretty dehydrated, 20 mins was still better than nothing. You'd think I'd be able to blend in a little more here but I too look just as much a foreigner purely by the way I dress, no headgear and I'm far too dark. Most women avoid the sun like the plague here.

So having found out were we needed to be we got the next bus to Semporna. Gutted to miss turtle island but if we don't see any in Mabul - we'll be back!!
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