Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Day 150. Borneo!

I can hardly believe it. I am in Borneo! The island looks brilliant green from the air, the South China Sea is incredibly blue, and the small atolls look like strange rhunic characters on its surface. I landed without problems, rented a car, and in the early afternoon was driving into Kota Kinabalu. This city reminds me of Puerto Vallarta, with its outer shell of fancy resorts but a nice solid core of old coastal town. Like everywhere else in Malaysia, the people are a veritable league of nations, friendly to the visitor, and obsessed with eating.

I used the afternoon to make some arrangements to climb Mount Kinabalu on June 14 and 15 (reservations are needed for the lodge half way up the mountain), find my way around, and find lodgings for the night. I landed in the Step In Hostel, a wonderfully friendly backpackers hostel, where I managed to secure the last bunk).

I went for a long walk (hot, but not terribly hot) in the search of the Islamic Museum, but got there too late to visit. Pity. On the way back I stopped at the hostel to cool down in the big and airy common room, and then went for another walk through the marketplace. It was a fascinating mix of smells and sights, and I found that kids and vendors were not at all shy when it came to pictures.

The sun is setting, and the waterfront is full of activity. I know I am going to like it here!


kegler747 said...

Hello, I'm following your blog for quite some time now. I just want to wish you that you have an enjoyable trip here in the Philippines soon. I hope you like the chaotic charm of Manila and the natural beauty of the countryside.

I hope you will not find it difficult to travel around, anyways almost all the signs everywhere are in English and generally the people here can understand and speak English.

ValMeza said...

Whats-up chif. I see U are having a great time. I wish that U enjoy your trip just as much as I enjoy reading U Blog.

Take care and remember do not drink the water.

J. Meza