Leeches

Trip Start Jun 01, 2006
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Malaysia  ,
Sunday, October 29, 2006

Hello all. Vinny here. Mike is collating another tale so I've been delegated the what we did after the island up until we got to Singapore. Which was quite a lot.

After leaving the island, we had a little relax and travel admin day in Kotha Baru the Provencal capital. Travel admin isn't exactly a strenuous activity; E mails, travelpod, few phone calls and a proper cleansing of body and belongings. Then headed down to 'the jungle', the big bad Tamil Negra, the jewel of Malaysia's crown, a prominent player in the BBC's 100 things to see before you die list, the 'canopy walk' one the Lonely Planets things to do in South East Asia top 5, the mecca of desire, the 9th great wonder of the world after the Robin Hood statue in Nottingham city centre...... okay maybe not that and I'll stop going on. I mention these things though to point out how built up expectations of the area are and (just like New Years) when things get built up too much invariably its an anticlimax. It was.

After an early start we traveled down from Kotha Baru on the jungle railway which slices through the centre of the country stopping every so often at lovely little Malay villages. We had been joined on the journey by a German, Robert, who we'd met that morning and a French couple, who we had met on the island, Cedric and Zena or Zana or Zia or Zeeta - one of those embarrassing times when you've asked someone their name twice not understood so for the rest of the time can only address them with conversation when you are making exact eye contact. We arrived in Jerantut, downstream and stop over point for Tamil Negra, commandeered a bus and after being hounded into buying park passes at a hotel tourist office headed off.

I'm waffling, sorry, I'll hurry up. The village is a horrible tourist trap. Which comes as a surprise as before hand you kind of get this feeling you'll be living off the land up in tree houses. Tanned men in loin cloths and ladies wearing just perfectly shaped green leaves. The reality is huts, mud and scams.

It wasn't all bad. The park itself was lovely. We went on a great walk with Robert, the French couple and Tanya and Paul who we met up with again after the island. The canopy walk itself was good fun although half of it was being fixed up, not the most settling thing to know, so you did feel a little duped once again. After we scaled a hill to look out over the jungle and went off in search of a 'hide' (shelter) to watch some wildlife. Although we only saw a butterfly.

Whilst stepping over logs and roots, swinging through the trees on vines and saving helpless maidens from the jaws of lions, we started to note the floor was moving slightly, hundreds of little caterpillar things heading in our direction... leeches! After a short burst of controlled manic speed walking we got ourselves to a blood sucking animal free clearing on a bridge. After a quick shoes off inspection sure enough the buggers had got us around the ankles and legs. All except a smirking Robert. We got our own back later though by feeding him to the crocodiles. Its not very nice having leeches on you (obviously), but when you are picking them off you can't help but feel a little 'Mick Dundee'. Like you have just experienced one of those thing every hardened wanderer should. In a deep voice "leeches, you say, Yeah, done those little bastard"

Anyway, we left the jungle the next morning and headed off destination Kuala Lumpur. Which is a great city. Clean, fun and easy to get round. The Petronas Towers dominate the skyline looking fantastic. We finally got to see a more suitable film than 'Devil wears Prada' at the cinema. The Prestige by the way, Hugh Jackman Christian Bale, 3 stars. A couple of days in KL didn't do it the justice it deserved, but time is pressing, bank accounts are emptying and the police are closing in about the missing body of a german.

That's me done. Just like to say thank you to all of you that are keeping up to date with our continuing adventures. A special mention to uncle Dick for your entertaining comments and appreciation of Bruce Campbell. That's 'the' Bruce Campbell not 'our' Bruce Campbell though we wouldn't forget you either Bruce Campbell (ours)!!

Toodle Pip.


Oh by the way we didn't feed a German to reptiles, we wouldn't do that in Malaysia.
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