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Journey Around Sabah… to Tawau today

appetite, bak kut teh, exercise, fat, food, gym, journey, life, sea food, suppressant, tawau, work

Yesterday, went to gym to burn some fat then had a large amount of bak-kut-teh to recover back the burned fat 😆 Have not been to gym for many many years… man… the food is so nice after sweating out… had 3 plates of rice and two large bowl of bak-kut-teh 😀

It is 7.30 am and I’m still packing for my trip to Tawau… working trip from today till Friday… have to go troubleshoot some network problem there… 😛

Every time going outstation to the east coast side like Tawau or Sandakan, the first thing that will come across in everybody mind is seafood… yes load of sea foods… and they are damm cheap down there…

Yesterday, colleague over there called and promised to feed us with sea foods till we vomit… 😛 man… need to take appetite suppressant pills… ok, need to stop here… have to get ready for the trip…


Journey around Sabah – Kota Kinablau to Sandakan

Capresso, coffee, journey, life, sandakan, seafood

Last Wednesday, 19 August 2009, I went to our branch office in Sandakan to fix their network. Their network has been acting weird since it was struck by lightning.

We, me and two colleagues, took the road instead of flying to Sandakan. I’m getting fade up flying because you have to stick to the flight schedule and you can’t carry many gears on board.

By driving, time is in your control and able to carry more gears… and of course mobility.

I was looking forward to the journey since my last journey was at the end of last year… by road too 😀

I feel very fresh when we left Sandakan on that morning. The journey is about 400km and will take about 6 hours. Depending on traffic volume, the journey can be reduced to 4 hours.

There are many big lorries and buses travelling along the Kota Kinabalu – Sandakan road, so most of the time if there are convoys of lorries or buses, we have to tail along… especially when overtaking is hard and climbing hills.

During the journey, we did not stop anyway and we travel at moderate speed… we don’t want to rush… rushing is dangerous.

Since we did not stop anyway, we skipped our lunch and immediately checked into Kesington Hotel at Bandar Maju, Sandakan, around 4.00 PM.

We were so hungry… after unloading our gears into our rooms, we went out for food. We end up eating at Pizza Hut… lame… After our late lunch, we went back to our room and try to have a short rest before dinner.

I joined a few friends for dinner around 8.00 pm… seafood dinner. Here, the seafood is damm bloody cheap… you can eat prawn, fish, etc… as much as you can… you can have anything from the sea… you name it… they have it… and they are bloody cheap… like 50% cheaper than Kota Kinabalu!!!… and they are also damm bloody fresh… the taste of fresh seafood is heavenly… it just so good to chew… better than the Japanese food at Usagi in Karamunsing…

Anyway, came back yesterday and arrived home around 5.00 pm… usually I don’t feel tired when travelling… but I was so tired yesterday… I took a short nap before I went to the MCSE class around 6.30 PM…

Usually I will stay alert during my journey while snapping photos from inside the vehicle… in fact I sleep enough the night before… even took two packets of 3in1 Nescafe… I actually don’t take coffee… only tea… but I took it anyway, but still I feel so tired during the journey… Maybe I should have taken stronger coffee like Capresso… but every time I take coffee, my pee will smell like coffee after that 😛 that’s why I don’t like coffee.

The short nap I had before class was enough for me to attend the class and continue with movie… District 9… around 9.50 PM last night 😛

Anyway, gonna get some more rest today… or do more other stuff…


Day one at Singapore

journey, singapore

When we reach Singapore on the 3rd March 2009, the rain has stopped. It was a 4 hours journey… because we have to transit at Kuching International Airport.

Our original flight was MH631 departing from Kota Kinabalu international Airport with ETD at 11.10 AM and ETA is 14.15 PM. Unfortunately the flight was cancel which I believe was caused by low passengers.

Our flight was changed to MH637 with ETD at 9.05 AM and ETA is 12.35 PM… damm… that’s terrible because I have to get ready early morning… luckily I manage to get to the airport on time coz I was almost stuck at the Lintas traffic jam chaos around 7 AM.

I stayed at the Hotel Grand Central in Orchard Road area. The hotel is not bad although there is no temperature controller for the air cond. The room gets a bit warm for a while sometimes so there is no need for heated blanket. Probably the room has a sensors or something to bring up or down the temperature automatically.

Eating is no problem coz there are plenty stalls and shops around the area to eat. Right below the hotel, there is a row of stalls which operate until 3 or 4 AM or probably longer. And next to the hotel is Concorde Hotel & Shopping Mall. There are other hotels next to our hotel.

Changi Airport emigration check.

Hotel internet service is through wired and no WiFi, but I did not bother coz I did not bring my notebook. I end up using my hand phone to surf the web. It was cool using Maxis coz it works with SingTel very well. But the ugly part, Maxis said, I can use the Maxis.Data roaming for SG$10.50 per Megabytes… shoot tats KILLING man!!! But luckily, with Maxis I can hook to any SingTel hotspots for free. My room can get a weak SingTel WiFi signal… but good enough to do surfing throughout my stay in Singapore 😀

So hungry… my first meal at one of the stall below the hotel.

SingTel building view form hotel room.

The Concorde Hotel & Shopping Mall below the hotel.


Journey around Sabah – Ranau’s Petai

Dalit, journey, life, medicine, petai, ranau

petaiThis is the best diet pill you can find in the wild!!! It is super strong, once you eat it, you will throw up until you loose all your weight… 😆 just kidding… ok, let me introduce you to Petai or in its scientific name, Parkia Speciosa.

This is a ‘back posting’… during our way home on the 24 October 2008 in our Journey Around Sabah – Sandakan Region, we stopped at one of the stall along the road somewhere in Ranau. I bought some petai coz I do eat them… not raw but cooked with sambal 😀

Petai also know as sataw, twisted cluster bean, yongchaa, yongchaak, zawngtah or stink bean… yea a stinking bean! If you never come near to it before, most probably you will faint if you ever come near it… when the beans are pealed from its cocoon the strong aroma will fill the space.

The smell is stink and taste super bitter… once you eat them, your pee will smell the same 😛 They said, eating petai brings lots of benefits, especially when eaten raw!!! No way can I eat them raw though. But anything taste bitter always brings lots of benefits to our health… which good medicine don’t taste bitter?..:D

I also bought some local durian called ‘dalit’. Dalit is very different from durian especially its spike. Dalit spikes are more sharp, thinner and longer unlike durian’s. Dalit’s flesh are also not white like durian but red or yellow depending on the species. Dalit can be found in the jugle wild… but some are planted in the orchard. Dalit are more expensive than durian too coz they are quite rare.


Journey around Sabah – Tempurung Seaside Lodge, Kuala Penyu, Part 2

beaufort, journey, kuala penyu, life, Tempurung Seaside Lodge

This is another post about Tempurung Seaside Lodge. We stayed here for one night on the 16 December 2008.
Our colleagues here at Kuala Penyu supposed to make a reservation for 2 rooms for 3 of us. But because of miscommunication they book for 2 persons 😮

When we arrived, the Tempurung Seaside Lodge staff greeted us and took us to our room… for two persons he said… wait a minute… two rooms and for 3 persons lah…

After some discussion, we settled for the family room, for the three of us… which is great.

The room has one double bed and two single beds… really great for family coming for vacation here. The beds are enough for father, mother and 3 or 4 kids… or spare it for baby bedding if you have baby with you 😀 With the huge size room, the floor still can accommodate another 3 or 4 heads… 😆

Like I mentioned in my previous post, water supply is not a problem. Bathroom is OK but with a very low shower head… at my eye level, so I have to bend a bit to wash my head, but should be fine.

No air-con but with two ceiling fans and sea-breeze only… window with no grill but with mosquitoes net.

The sound of the wave hitting the beach is very soothing while trying to sleep…

OK, will talk more about Tempurung Seaside Lodge again next time… with photos and videos, hopefully.

Feeling very hungry now… work till 6pm just now at our Beaufort office… going to eat at the restaurant at the end of the hotel block… same like last night 😛 Lazy to walk far…

If the Tempurung Seaside Lodge management reading this, please chop-off the coconut trees… it really blocking the nice view from the top… 😛


Journey around Sabah – Tempurung Seaside Lodge, Kuala Penyu

journey, kuala penyu, life, Tempurung Seaside Lodge

Welcome to Kuala PenyuJust to refresh about the delay of our Journey around Sabah… our vehicle was having a minor problem because its fuel filter needs replacement. The mechanic suspects the filter is contaminated with water… we can only travel with the jerking vehicle at 40km/h.

I was so exhausted waiting for the whole thing to get fixed… added with the extra heat… yes, Monday weather was extra hot.

Because of the unnecessary delay, we changed our plan and headed straight to Las Vegas instead to enjoy ourselves… to play roulette, poker and jackpot at hotels las vegas… 😆 just kidding…

Tempurung Seaside Lodge beach

We actually landed ourselves at Tempurung Seaside Lodge at Kampung Tempurung, Kuala Penyu. This place is so cool… beautiful beaches… just like the Mild Seven advertisement 😀 A great place to relax, vacationing or to escape from city life.

Surfing at 3.5G
err… have I mentioned that I was surfin at 3.5G with celcom broadband? 😮

The rate is $135 per head… yep they count by head…  inclusive of room, breakfast, lunch and dinner. Before coming here, my colleague warns that they rely on rain water! Shoot… what happen if there is no rain? Yesterday’s weather was so hot, no rain… I can’t live without fresh water… I guess if the water runs out, I have to learn how to live with salt water… yea, sea water… :O But they actually have plenty of water… not sure whether it comes from the main supply pipe or rain… probably from both sources… but the water is clean and the tap is running strong.

Tempurng Seaside Lodge restaurant
The restaurant and office viewed from the highest cabin.

Anyway, our journey was great… the roads at Sabah’s southern region are in low land… that’s why there are always flood news from this region… not many hill climbing roads… but just a low climbing roads. The stretch is also the road heading to Brunei and Sarawak… and we can go to Labuan if we want to 😆 it’s so close… yay…

Tempurung Seaside Lodge cabins
The cabins view from the back.

The common area at the cabins.

The restaurant at night.

OK, I will talk more about Tempurung Seaside Lodge later. We only stayed there one night. Currently I’m in Beaufort… at a lame hotel 🙁 There is no great hotel in Beaufort.


POS is mutating and I like it

beaufort, journey, kuala penyu, life, POS

Post MalaysiaStanding POSDid you notice the Post Office or POS near you is changing its face? It seems that all the POS are having major renovation… a more modern and corporate looks. I believe this is the first time they change their looks since a very long time ago… probably since the 70s.

The POS near my house has changed it looks but I have not taken its photo yet… only while it was still being renovated a few weeks ago. And I really like the new look of the ‘new’ POS.

The one I really like is the front door… the huge clear see-through glass door. Printed with huge fonts on the glass door is the Post Code. Previously their door is a small two leaf glass door and heavily tinted. I don’t really like it tinted since I can’t see if the counters are busy or not from outside or from across the road.


Penampang Post Office
Penampang Post Office during renovation stage.

And because of the new looks, on my Journey around Sabah this time, I tried to find the Post Office nearby to get a snap of the front door… to get the District’s name and postcode… and to proof that I was here 😀

And I can also see a couple of modern gadgets inside like PCs and kiosks. The kiosks are probably for purchasing POS accessories (envelope, stamp etc.) or for withdrawing money… looks like the POS systems are getting better and advance.

Kaula Penyu Post Office
Kuala Penyu Post Office with the huge Post Code (Poskod) printed on its new see-through glass door.

You may be wondering why anyone will still need POS since email is there and emails are free. Well, you still need POS to deliver your package and greetings card 😀 And probably you will be able to do internet browsing or cash withdrawal soon within its cool room.

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Journey Around Sabah – dreaming of Sony Ericsson XPERIA X1

broken, Ericsson, iphone, journey, Sony, X1, XPERIA

OK… we are still stuck waiting for our vehicle to get into the service line… we are trying to jump queue since the service centre is fully booked… we are trying to get inside contacts to get into the line… wish us luck…

While waiting and hoping for that… I just want to share my experience with iPhone…

Apple iPhone created a craze around the globe when it was launched… although the size is quite huge, it still not bad when holds on your palm. I have the chance to play with iPhone recently when my boss asked me to configure its WiFi and his email in the iPhone.

I’m reluctant to accept iPhone… because why should I change since I have been using Windows Mobile PDA phone for more than 2 years and it serve fine with me… first with HP iPAQ HW6965 then HTC TyTN II… both with real keyboard and not with software keyboard. iPhone is using software keyboard.

Maneuvering the menu at first is quite difficult… must get use to the sliding thingy although I’ve tried the slider or shift in the HTC before but I’m just not comfortable with it. The iPhone response is fast… yea very fast!.. very impressive… much more responsive than my Windows Mobile PDA phones.

The 5 megapixels camera is super clear… the quality is as good as my Sony DSC-T200 8 megapixels camera. Holding the iPhone is very confortable… the width is just nice… and the thickness is thin… yes so thin with such power under its hood.

At the beginning iPhone and also other model of phones are locked to some operator only. But today, unlocked cell phones are easily available. Unlocked cell phones are much better than locked since you can do more things with it… and you can sell it back easier at higher price. You can have unlocked iPhone here in KK, but most of the time the seller will say it is ‘under water’ phone… meaning the phones are smuggle in and you will not get proper warranty.

With all the great things about iPhone, although after having fun with it for a couple of hours… I still prefer to continue using Windows Mobile PDA phone… and my next dream phone is the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X1.

Wow… manage write that long post… with all the stress but with freedom from office work 😀

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Journey Around Sabah – have to turn back!

beaufort, broken, fuel pump, journey, tenom

Damm… our vehicle is having a minor problem right now but it is causing a major delay. We have just filled it with diesel… and now it started jerking after some distance journey.

According to the mechanic it is caused by the main diesel fuel filter. The filter has been contaminated with water causing the diesel fuel pump not working 100% perfect. The water must have mixed with the diesel fuel!!!

It is well known that new vehicle using the new generation of diesel fuel pump is very sensitive with low quality diesel… the fuel pump will start protesting once it detected a slight mixture of water in the diesel fuel. There are news or story about Toyota or Nissan owner has to replace their fuel pump… and this new generation of fuel pump is not cheap… it can cost more than $10K… yea that spell more than ten thousands… and it is not covered in the warranty!!!

We can’t continue with our Journey Around Sabah… we were on our way to Tenom… we have to turn back and now we are stuck still in KK… This is a real bummer…

And now, our official workshop said they don’t have stock or spare for the fuel filter!!! Double damm for that… How the heck is that you can’t have a single spare for that important part while having a fleet of the same vehicles? Haiyooo… demand too high is it?

Now we have to run here and there to fill up forms so that we can proceed to service the vehicle at its ‘real’ workshop at Inanam!!! If like this, I’m not only getting stress but going to loose some weight… yea no need weight loss pill lah if like this…

OK, the most important is we are going to have a safe journey… I have to be positive with this.

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Journey Around Sabah – Barbecued Corn

corn, journey, kudat, life

On our way back from Kudat on last Friday, 28 November 2008, we stopped at a few stalls along the way. Traveling around Sabah by road is a great experience. We can see great scenery… almost still in its original natural habitat.

There are stalls selling handicrafts, fish, crabs, vegetables, herbs, birds, fruits and many more by the local peoples staying along the roads. It’s great to see these people doing their business happily. I don’t think they care how much they make in a day. Imagine, they are able to survive without money because they can eat what they planted, what they catch at the river, what they hunt or collect from the jungle… and share or barter trade with their neighbors. For us, I don’t think we can… we need money to pay our bills, loans, buy foods… everything need money… money… but money. Without money, we can’t eat.

One of the stall we stopped by is the one selling corn (jagung)… they are selling two types of corns… jagung pulut (pulut corn?) and jagung manis (sweet corn). They sell the corn fresh, still with its stalk. They also sell ‘pangang’ or barbecued corn. I bought two bundles with 5 corns on each bundle… one bundle ‘manis’ and one bundle ‘pulut’. I also bought some of the barbecued corns and we ate some at the stalls. Imagine if they have popcorn machines, they might even sell pop corn right at their stall… and we will be enjoying eating popcorn in the middle of nowhere minus the cinema 😆 The barbecued corns taste very nice… sweet and hot… coz they are fresh from the oven 😆

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