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Tioman Island has a DUTY FREE STORE!

I'm going on a recommendation and headed to some islands for chill-laxation and more night bus excursions to follow.

rain 80 °F

Today is Saturday July 10th, 2010 and I survived last night. In the midst of the chaotic evening, I realized that I am strong and do have emotions. I wanted to be Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz and tap my red shoes to go home. What home you may ask but I wanted to be at my parents. I do miss my family. Just as in life, you will have bumps in the road while traveling with no plan but that is just part of the journey. Things always seem to turn around and I'm looking at the glass as half full. I did have a spectacular seat in route to Mersing and was able to get a little bit of sleep on the way to the port and the bus driver reallly took care of me and made sure I got where I needed to go.

Before long, I was dropped off on an island in Malaysia known as Tioman Islands. In speaking with a women at the port, she told me to go to the ABC drop off as they had more budget places to stay. I roamed back and forth with my backpack and sweaty clothes for what felt like ages but just as I was about to give up and go back on the boat, I came across a beach bungalow, the last one in fact. Timing was key on this journey. I had an older couple as neighbors who came to the island over 6 weeks ago and have been traveling for over 10 years. From hell to heaven in less than a day. You can’t beat my view at Mawar Beach Bungalows. This is definitely a place to chill-lax. After the day I had I so wanted a wine but beer was all they had. My next craving was for chocolate. Sweet! I remember I bought an overpriced 70% organic chocolate bar in Singapore for this very situation. Just as I reached for it in my bag I noticed a bunch of brown all inside. You guessed it, It had melted all over my bag due to the blazing hot day. Have no fear, I salvaged what I could by licking the wrapper and using a spoon.

As I mentioned this is a very chill place. No worries, I had a walk up and down the beach, a view of the sunset from my patio and then a nice dinner on the beach. Ok, I know what you are thinking…I was just missing the pleasure of someone’s company. Such great service and nice people on the island. I feel obligated to eat where I am staying but after a look around, they were the best and you can’t beat dinner on the beach.

Nothing much going on in the evening. I sat on the patio a bit chatting with the older couple and then it was off to bed even though I tossed and turned all night. This was also the night I realized that I left my camera charger in Siem Reap. Perfect! I’m not planning on getting to a major city anytime soon and now I will make it a mission to find someone with a canon camera charger…on this island no doubt. The morning came and it was time for some breakfast. I headed over to the usual spot and I couldn’t have planned it better. I told the owner about my camera charger and said how I would ask everyone until I found one. Would you believe it that the first person I asked not only had a canon charger but he pulled out the same exact camera, color and all!!! I waited for him to finish breakfast and then we chatted in route to his bungalow. Things just happen for a reason because he also informed me of a DUTY FREE STORE over the hill and on another part of the island. It was about 3km each way. He had gone their the prior evening to get some beer and they had wine. Looks like this girl is on a mission today. Just when I felt so secluded from everything and everyone I found this path over to another part of the island. What an adventure to fill an otherwise chill-laxing day. I can tell you that I have never gone through such great lengths to get myself some adult grape juice. As I arrived to the duty free store with sweat running down my entire body and my backpack empty for goodies, I not only bought some red wine (hot weather I know but warm white wine just sounded yuck) but also 3 huge bottles of water and a sarong as I keep forgetting mine in random places and they are so handy and have around.

Next up, let’s head back. I may just do a run over here later if I have the energy. Wait! Why not incorporate my large water bottles into a workout as I headed back 3 kms. Work out indeed. I kept one in my pack and one on each arm. I was feeling the burn alright, raising my arms up and down for what seemed to be ages. Thank God I found a mentos stand as I headed back also. It was a productive day and I ended it with my usual dinner and a chat to a local on where to go next. Of course, I had the wine as well and it never tasted so delicious. The clear air soon turned to rain showers and the combo of that and the grape juice helped this girl to have a great night sleep.

Morning came too early it seemed but I did sleep in again and it was still raining. I intended on running but the rain cancelled that idea (ok and maybe I was a bit too lazy). I had a late breakfast and decided to catch the late ferry back to the mainland and try another island, the Perhentians that so many raved about. The Tioman Islands turned to be a great relaxing experience and if the rain didn’t get in the way I think I would have stayed longer. After all, it is the rainy season but this girl had cabin fever. Where is the sun?

Instead, another long transit adventure is in store for me. What I am in for, well, I have no idea and that is what makes it all the more fun. Sure, I must keep telling myself that.

jk livin’

The Dish is out :)

Posted by Dishtravel 04:12 Archived in Malaysia

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