Raison d'etre

Coming Soon!


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Float like a butterfly, Run like a lizard; on water!

Have you heard of Jesus Lizards or Basilisk Lizards?

The former got their name from being able to split the streams they run in into two.. heh, Just kidding.

It comes from their ability to run across water for 4-5 metres at a time, at their hindlegs!

why my sudden interest in these lizards?

Because right now I may be taking care of one!

This little guy, I don't his common name, nor his species but what I can describe about him, is this.

He measures Around 8.5cm from head to tail, at the moment,
with the head and body taking up 3.0 cm.. the rest of him all tail!
He's got a splayed hind foot, with the fourth toe the longest,
and he's got eye marking on the back of his head, something reminiscent of Cobras.

I'm guessing what he will grow up to be

1)- A Chameleon,
2)- An Iguana
3)- A running lizard
4)- A house lizard. LOL

And his long tail piqued my interest.

Here's what I found.

Bipedal Lizards at blistering speed
explains via freeze frame as well as videos (lab) how lizards run faster bipedally.

Here's a National Geographic Video, of a Young Basilisk Lizard runs on Water

And here: Is the explanation of how it freakin does it!

And I'd appreciate any guesses to what kinda Dinosaur or Dragon he is! :-)::-)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Need Help With Species Identification

Calling out to Any backyard Naturalist that happen to pass by:
Need your help with putting a name to the subjects of my photographs!

Location: FRIM Outpost in Teluk Intan/ Bidor and Teluk Intan itself

More photos of this series can be seen HERE

lizard, Malaysia

lizard, Malaysia

Moth, Malaysia





Ant-mimic, Spider, Arachnid, Malaysia

Eagle, Raptor, Malaysia

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Preview - NZ diaries

1) Wanna go back to the days where manual labour was the order of the day and my gray matter can rest (its cerebellum) on its laurels.

2) To get attuned to my instincts, to hone my 6th sense, to feel the vibe of the earth, to get in touch with Gaia! To trust my gut feeling and go with the flow. and be steadfast with what happens next, no complaints! Learn to make a decision and bear the consequences!

3) What will it b like to be in the company of someone for 2 whole months! despite her being the love of my life; I think it'll take some getting used to, and wonder whether will we ever get tired of each other? hmmmm.... Preview of future houseman life....?

4) Learn to put Dale CArnegie to the fore. By going to someplace new, where everyone is a stranger, where no one has preconceived notions about me, I'm free to tweak my personality and demeanour. GRanted, I've always been myself, And now I'll try NOT to be myself, and see how that works for me, in terms of building relationships. Maybe the real me has been a Jackass all this while. LOL

i wanna learn to be a great storyteller! It will help in catching people's attention for my environmental work!

5)I'll probably be stuck in my profession for at least a good 20 years (after which I'll aim for retirement one way or another. Medicine will be on the side. Like Potato chips on the side of Nando's Chicken, ru hui's favourtie dish. (Oh shit. In Leru's case, The chips are the main course, the chicken? probably she thinks of it as coleslaw. LOL). So, Before I get stuck in Mud for the next 2 decades, I'll go for fresh stuff and new experiences... and build life stories and anecdotes for my children.

6) maybe I can join an environmental network in New Zealand. And ruru can join the knitting and sketching society! That way when we get too bored with each other, we'd have other people to complain about each other. HEH!

SKydiving! Things to do! Play with kiwi bird! and compare size. ^.^

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Theatera Bombastica?

Below is from a page calling for membership in MMA's(Malaysian Medical Association) Magazine

The branches and sections of the MMA, (SCHOMOS & PPSMMA) need to be active so that MMA grows. They need to garner more support for MMA so that MMA speaks with a stentorian voice on matters affecting the profession. Doctors should not stay billeted within the confines of their workspace. Doctors are not in a couture profession.

The MMA needs to asseverate its position very clearly to the Government so that the MMa can forfend policies that are detrimental to the public and the profession. Fortunately, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has a warm and engaging relationship with MMA. The MOH has always lent their ears to the EMMA. There are moments when sensitivities are kindled but to have a meaningful relationship which works for the hoi polloi of the nation, not just the doctors, the MMA perseverates on some policy matters till a satisfactory exegesis is obtained during the meetings. Unlike others, the MOH does not have a carapace of arrogance. Under the mentorship of the warm minister and the effervescent DG of health, the MMA has gone places with the MOH. But sometimes the government appears to draw up a gallimaufry of health policies without consulting the MOH. The government needs to take cognizance of the view of the MOH and MMA

The MMA should never go into a soporific mode and stay alert to the developments and directions the Government takes on health matters. We, as doctors, should contribute our ideas. We should get involved and thus far, the MOH has been responsive to the EMMA. We should be engaging, involved and cogitate in resolving burning issues and not be intrepid however obfuscate the policy is.

The MMA receives a stream of outright billingsgate from some members. But, we have to be realistic. Diplomacy and meetings which are germane to the issue will be a benison to all of us. No issue should be blown to Brobdingnagian proportions that cannot be resolved. We need irenic diplomacy and civic humanism to resolve matters rather than adopt a myrmidon stance. MMA does not rusticate on issues affecting the profession. Be assured that the MMA looks into all problems that affect the public and private sector doctors. The media does not always carry MMA's ratiocinating views.

On your part, get your friends to join the MMA and make MMA more roborant so that the profession is viewed with more empathy and respect.

Have fun interpreting the Article!

The meanings are listed below in order of appearance

1. Booming

2. Lodging- staying in

3. High fashion design – as in haute couture

4. Assert

5.Prevent the Occurence of

6. Interpretation (used in the context of the bible)

7. Bubbly, (though its hard to imagine the DG of health being bubbly..)

8. A motley assortment of- the three stooges?

9. Ken. Comprende. Savvy

10. Sleep inducing - like our lectures

11. Think

12. Make obscure - cover with a veil

13. Foul-mouthed or obscene abuse. profanity

14. A spoken blessing (as opposed to deer meat? LOL)

15. Immense – referring to imaginary country of Brobdingnag (What the Hell?)

16. Conducive to peace

17. a member of the warriors who followed Achilles on the expedition against Troy- a follower who follows orders without question
(as opposed to following without thinking? well, it can't be helped if the leader's cerebral capacity is so constricted- think UMNO) lol.- coin- UMNO-nic stance.

(case in point

"Johor Baru Puteri Umno chief Azura Mohd Afandi wants the Information Ministry to curb television shows and commercials that could lead people astray from the right religious paths. “For example, commercials on sanitary pads are openly shown on TV and this could influence the young to get involved in social ills,” said Azura")

18. Leaving a rustic idyllic life- in this context, I think it means "rest and do nothing about", here.

19. Reason methodologically and logically

20. Restoring vigor or strength.

PS-*Theatera bombastica probably can't be found because... well, I coined it. Lol*

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Parenting: East Vs West 孩子教育学问深奥!

Such as interesting article, I don't know the source, but kudos to the author!





又一會而,托比出去和鄰居家的小朋友玩,沒多久,氣喘吁吁地跑回家,對蘇珊說:「媽媽,露西說我的褲子穿反了,真的嗎?」露西是鄰居家的小姑娘,今年5 歲。蘇姍笑著說: 「是的,你要不要換回來?」托比點點頭,自己脫下褲子,仔細看了看,重新穿上了。從那以後,托比再也沒穿反過褲子。


一天中午,托比鬧情緒,不肯吃飯。蘇珊說了他幾句,憤怒地小托比一把將盤子推到了地上,盤子裡的食物灑了一地。蘇姍看著托比,認真地說:「看來你確實不想吃飯!記住,從現在到明天早上,你什麼都不能吃。」托比點點頭,堅定地回答:「Yes!」我在心裡暗笑,這母子倆,還都挺倔 !

下午,蘇珊和我商量,晚上由我做中國菜。我心領神會,托 比告別愛吃中國菜,一定是蘇珊覺得托比中午沒好好吃飯,想讓他晚上多吃點兒。



我心疼了,想替托比求情,說點好話,卻見兒子對我使眼色。想起我剛到美國時,兒子就跟我說,在美國,父母教育孩子時,別人千萬不要插手,即使是長輩也不例外。無奈,我! 只好保持沉默。

那頓飯,從始至終,可憐的小托比一直坐在玩具車裡,眼巴! 巴地看著我們三個大人狼吞虎嚥。我這才明白蘇珊讓我做中餐的真正用意。我相信,下一次,托比想發脾氣扔飯碗時,一定會想起自己餓著肚子看爸爸媽媽和奶奶享用美食的經歷。餓著肚子的滋味不好受,況且還是面對自己最喜愛的食物。

臨睡前,我和蘇珊一起去向托比道晚安。托比小心翼翼地問: 「媽媽,我很餓,現在我能吃中國面嗎?」蘇珊微笑著搖搖頭,堅決地說:「不!」托比嘆了口氣,又問:「那等我睡完覺睜開眼睛時,可以吃嗎?」「當然可以。」蘇珊溫柔地回答。托比甜甜地笑了。

大部分情況下,托比吃飯都很積極,他不想因為「罷吃」而錯過食物,再受餓肚子的苦。每當看到托比埋頭大口大口地! 吃飯,嘴上臉上粘的都是食物時,我就想起外孫女。她像托比這麼大時,為了哄她吃飯,幾個大人端著飯碗跟在她屁股後面跑,她還不買賬,還要談條件:吃完這碗買一個玩具,再吃一碗買一個玩具……



蘇珊走上前,開清了事情的來龍去脈後,她一聲不吭,拿起小鍋,使勁敲到托比的頭上,托比沒防備,一下子跌坐在草地上,哇哇大哭起來。蘇珊問托比:「疼嗎?下次還這樣嗎?」 托比一邊哭,一邊拚命搖頭。? 說他以後再也不會這麼做了。

托比的舅舅送了他一輛淺藍色的小自行車,托比非常喜歡, 當成寶貝,不許別人碰。鄰居小姑娘露西是托比的好朋友,央求托比好幾次,要騎他的小車,托比都沒答應。



托比自己騎了會車,覺得有些無聊,看到那幾個孩子玩得那麼高興,他想加入,又覺得有些不好意思。他蹭到蘇珊身邊,嘟囔道:「媽媽,我想跟露西他們一起玩。」蘇珊不動聲色地說:「那你自己去找他們啦!」「媽媽,你陪我一起去。 」 托比懇求道。 「那可不行,剛才是你把露西弄哭的,現在你又想和大家玩,就得自己去解決問題。」



蘇珊的父母住在加利福尼亞州,聽說我來了,兩人開車來探望我們。家裡來了客人,托比很興奮,跑上跑下地亂竄。他把玩沙子用的小桶裝滿了水,提著小桶在屋裡四處轉悠。蘇珊警告了她好幾次,不要把水灑到地板上,托比置若罔聞。最後,托比還是把水桶弄倒了,水灑了一地。興奮的小托比不覺得自己做錯了事,還得意地光著腳丫踩水玩,把褲子全弄濕了。我連忙找出拖把準備拖地。蘇珊從我手中搶過拖把交給托比,對他說:「把地拖幹,把濕衣服脫下來,自己洗乾淨。」托比不願意,又哭又鬧的,蘇珊二話不說,直接把他拉到貯藏室,關了禁閉。聽到托比在裡面發出驚天動地的哭喊,我心疼壞了,想進去把他抱出來。托比的外婆卻攔住我,說: 「這是蘇珊的事。」

過了一會兒,托比不哭了,他在貯藏室裡大聲喊:「媽媽,我錯了。」蘇珊站在門外,問:「那你知道該怎麼做了嗎?」 「我知道。 」蘇珊打開門,托比從貯藏室走出來,臉上還掛著兩行淚珠。他拿起有他兩個高的拖把吃力地把地上的水拖乾淨。然後,他脫下褲子,拎在手上,光著屁股走進洗手間,稀里嘩啦地洗起衣服來。

托比的外公外婆看著表情驚異的我,意味深長地笑了。這件事讓我感觸頗深。在很多中國家庭,父母管教孩子時,常常會引起「世界大戰」,往往是外婆外公護,爺爺奶奶攔! ! 夫妻吵架,雞飛狗跳。






Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Sentimental Luddite

Is sentimentality over-rated?

If you've chanced by the article about a tomboyish girl and her 11 year old pink scissors given by her mum (which she hated) and now cherish in memory [in Starmag today, 3rd of October, TheStar.] it might trigger your thoughts a little.

My dad had a watch, given by his dad, which he used for more than 45 years. He couldn't part with it even when it breathed its last (despite innumerable fixes and CPRs). And I believe he's still keeping it somewhere safe, laying in the midst of his black hole of a Cabinet

Then there's this guy in ?japan ?UK who has been using the same Gillete Razor for 75 years.
I bet if you're Gillette, he'd be The MOST LOYAL customer ever, that you wouldn't want, LOL. Coz his first purchase, is his last purchase..

Do you have something in your keeping that you know will practically be useless, even as a decorative piece? I know I have plenty....

Nowadays, there's a Gadget-Grabbing Techno Rage that surrounds us, Iphone 4 being the recent case in point.

IPhone 4

With radio deejays, blog posts humming the Apple's Tune, there's really been a craze over it...

but, as I've said in my facebook wall-post,

Going out for dinner that day, we saw how many parents gave their childrens gadgets; initially it could have started with a mobile phone java game- parents passing the phone to child who claims they are bored in order to shut them up so that parents can do their shopping in peace.

Now we have dad, mom, and child playing with gadgets during dinner, with grandma looking forlorn at the food because no one is talking at a meal.

I believe children who you shut up with gadgets, will really no longer talk to you when they are adolescents, being absorbed by the fancy tech, and the relationship will just turn worse into adulthood.

So I'm a luddite; until we can really plan, and educate them about using it responsibily. I've seen People who get caught up with gadgets, often turning into otakus, becoming less adventurous, reliant on their GPS, lose their natural instincts for adventure... bla bla bla..

Coz I really pity the grandma... and discussion with my colleagues on it. 3 out of 4 of them recommend that they should buy grandma a gadget.

It's really Sweat inducing, their mentality...

Technology should improve communication, not stifle it. Especially within families.

That said, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, as they are entitled to the autonomy over their own cash. But maybe you'd like to hear me out...?

Although often situations make me hail 3 times to the person who espoused
"Nature is awesome, adventure is wholesome, Human Beings, plain troublesome"

I'm actually sentimental with human relationships as well. And striking up conversation with strangers on my trips and forging unique relationships has always been a part of me, and has always enlivened my adventures everywhere. 或许我贵人运不错?

My latest trip to Brunei alone has two such people touch my lives. One who is a resort manager,

Swell Guy
(the guy in blue, that's my saviour!)

who went out of his way to help secure a stay for me at a rival lodge because I'm a student who couldn't afford his accommodation. This swell guy actually called two other tour operators and even concocted the story of me being an exchange student to help me secure a stay in Ulu Temburong, without which
these pictures would never have been taken.

Another is a poor little ol lady who has no friends, cheated by her husband in relationship, and of money by the hubby's little vixen, and ostracized by her own family because of her subsequent depression- who was my tour guide, personal transporter and story-teller in and out of Bander Seri Bagawan.

Sabah- where the resort operator for Halleluyah hill resort gave us a whole apartment to ourselves when we paid the amount for a room, invited ruhui for hot showers in their own home, and dished out finger licking meals fro a paltry RM5, just a stone's throw away from Mount Kinabalu. Their numerous pets entertained us, as much as their owners did!

Over in Terengganu,
there's this extremely tasty yummy juice drink that's almost 100% real, thick, fruit puree sold in a little shop for RM3.00, and I would return to the stall like a homing pigeon everyday after cycling through KT.

pure fruit juice

I chatted with the lady during my 1st visit, on my second visit, she offered us free keropok lekor,
Keropok lekor

and on my 3rd visit, we enjoyed a coconut mango, straight from her garden!... It's a stall I vow to return to if and when I go there..

then there's also this gentleman who runs a bubble milk tea stall opposite Ping Anchorage, where I was staying...

had a short chat with him... then on my second visit, he invited me to play badminton with his pals, and even prepared badminton shoes in addition to the racquets for me because he knew I wouldn't be well prepared.

So on the last day before I left terengganu, I had a great game with uncles and aunties in terengganu, haha...

Friend, and friends of said friend while in UK, Cheery lil lady Yumi while in Hong Kong, ... another lady who gave me a discount because I didn't have enough cash with me, no questions asked while in terengganu; marvelous people who I would not have met or talked to were I having me head down looking at a GPS instead of asking for directions, or playing a Java Game instead of striking up a conversation with a fellow bus passenger. Therefore, I'm a placard carrying dude who lifts the sign: a handphone, should be a handphone, and nothing more.

Speaking about losing our natural instincts, strip the handphone of a teen anywhere- and he'd rather part with his wallet no matter the amount or cost- and you'd find him dumbfounded,disorientated and lost in the city. this is not conjecture. This came from an Interview I made with one. And Experienced with many, my relatives included.

why are we revolving our lives around gadgets and tools when they should be just an aid, a hammer we occasionally use, a lightbulb we change now and then.

By the way, how many 21st Gen Y adults do you need to change a lightbulb? 5;
one to call up a electrical engineer friend to complain,
one to tweet :"OMG! D wurld 's ending, 'm blind, 'm freakin scared X("
one to blog about his blackout experience in an overdramatic fashion,
one to surf wikipedia to find out,
and one to turn to DIY-for-dummies to learn how to unfold a collapsible ladder)

Har har..says you. now, which 3 parts should you suspect is bust when the flourescent light blows out?

Gee... My post looks pretty protracted by now... but, this is a topic that I will certainly return to, no doubt about it...

I'd end the post with this video on sustainable consumerism, enjoy :-) It starts slow, but it will certainly not ring hollow.

The price of consumerism- on the planet, on other people, on ourselves,

Notice what are:
Externalizing costs
Planned and perceived obsolescence
The purpose of an ad, is to make you unhappy with what you have.

By buying the newest gadget that money can buy, are you falling into the trap?

ps.- the answer, the flourescent tubing, the starter, and the choke.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Musings- Passing the buck?

Caution- This would be one of those hard to understand posts, again :-(

Eh recap recap we're gonna do it again;
again and again, nothin' gonna change;

Rain rain, rain down the pain;
I will stand up to it;
stand up to the pain;

Embers of the flame;
tears of the shame;
crying, well, that ain't lame;

coz it helps to deal with the pain

Part of what shaped me into who I am today, silly as it may seem, stems from lessons I got, from Japanime.

The first anime that gave me a sense of direction, the unmistakable lesson of reasons to be, raison detre even, if you will

was Samurai-X.

Kenshin Himura, he was my hero of sorts.

kenshin himura, samurai-X

He thought me about standing up for those who didn't have a voice,
to be true to myself, (oh how hackneyed can this be? LOL), to fight for what I believe is right... and that "truth" is what you perceive as real, though there may many versions of it depending who you are talking to ... where justice means very different things depending on where you stand.

Because of sanosuke Sagara, I punched the wall, hoping to train my knuckles into fists of steel. Futae no Kiwami- well, turns out there is Wolf's Law.. which states that bone hardens and toughens from stresses placed on it.

conversely, disuse weakens the bone, much as what is experienced by astronauts in zero gravity.

Either way, I punched my way thru year 2001 to 2010.. and indeed I have pretty tough fists.. if I may say so hohoho.. Few times, I punched till my hands bled. Just recently, I bled my knucles again, despite wearing protective bandage... and it was only a Sandbag... well me keeping at it for half an hour contributed much I guess!

Now I have a sense of deja vu with Naruto with the "pain" Arc...
The anime was so so from the start... dipped down very badly during filler arcs before shippuden.. and now things are really really picking up.

I think, these few days, watching selected episodes of the anime....
I figure that Jiraiya is my favourite character...

Jiraiya Sensei

I don't know... maybe its him passing on his hopes and dreams onto his disciples.

Maybe its because:

Much as I try to better myself, in terms of spreading the conservation message...
I just seem to be knocking into many brickwalls.

From 2001, when I first brushed shoulders with environmentalism through the river terrapin conservation programme in Dungun, Terengganu with Prof Chan...
Prof Chan Eng Heng
(prof chan is the one in the middle)

During which I ran into problems with a Canadian volunteer over the washing of plates. I spoiled her "system" by pouring away dirty dishwater which I thought she was gonna pour into the river... and that tensed up things in the camp...

Then came Anthony, the youngest kid on the block... I tried to take him "under my wing" in a way by showing off Pioneering techniques from my Scout years... But somehow I built a wall around myself during that time. He went on to become the Bayer's Environmental Envoy for 2008, and had a stint inGermany.. whereas I grovelled here still.. LOL

Maybe through both these incidents, Prof chan has a weird aura around her when Im around.. It lingers when I met her in 2008... this time for a turtle conservation programme with SEATRU in Pulau Redang... there is this wall, I don't know... that separates me from her... It just feels awkward... It really rears up during the environmental carnival when I asked a favour from her... things in fact.. turned cold.

Another event would be with Mister Choo Chee Kuang, a seahorse conservation expert, hailing from UMT (or KUSTEM as it was once known), along with Prof Chan...
I had two experiences with him- once in 2005 and another in 2007, If I'm not mistaken...

Choo Chee Kuang

In 2007, I saw my picture that was taken in 2005 glued to the wall along with other volunteer's photos at the research house in Gelang Patah... I was wearing a blue shirt with the words: "Environmental Philosophy" in that picture, Lol... but It was baggy and prompted a fellow volunteer... I think it was Ching Foong's GF- to comment...

"WAH! these two years must be a lot of Stress for you hor, to lose so much weight?" -.-'''

Lau ching foong haha putting a very "yeng" photo of him here!

That aside.. during this trip out into the sea, during a transect/ quadrate sampling, I wasn't able to release one of the seahorses that was still within an untied plastic bag on a transect pole before the tide came in... and We didn't know the fate of that poor little seahorse. I have no idea till now, how I committed the blunder- cum- murder... but things stiffened thereafter, this time with Mr Choo...

My environmental Carnival was plagued with different kind of problems... many problems..
Job delegation problems, team member issues
The Dean wanting to convert the English themed carnival into a fully Malay language themed event at the very end. ( I have no issue with the language, but that was the at the very last moment when all my publicity was in English, in the website, in the magazine, in new strait times)... He let me have my way.... but in a show of defiance, the Dean protested by giving his opening speech in BM .. The crux of the matter? "we're called Universiti KEBANGSAAN Malaysia" so all things should be in Malay...

my lapse to place recycling bins during the event,
my error for not informing stalls to not use polystyrene and plastic bags...

My inexperience, overestimation of my abilities to shoulder everything- which stems from my inability to delegate work well- resulted in a less than stellar Environmental Carnival... of which I'm still sulking over....

Well, Despite honing my skills at public speaking, reading up on team-work as well as leadership, I'm afraid I failed terribly, nonetheless...

then there's also this weird guy Bernard... (oh man, it takes some guts for a weirdo to call another weird.)...arggghh... most of the relationships I built in the name of conservation are brittle, high strung ones... including the most recent, withDr Chan Kah Yein... i wonder why....

So, Back to what lead me into this post...
These events, coupled with failed lectures onto my fellow friends regarding environmentalism, failed recycling projects in my KTDI hostel... made me sorta wanna give up on this cause..
Not give up 100%, but give up putting too much effort into it for the fear of disappointment and failure...

I feel that, maybe I'm destined to pass my spirit and my cause onto my children..
to expose to them the wonder that is nature from very young and cultivate in them a sense of enjoying the simple pleasures in life... to instil in them the passion of an environmentalist, and for them to carry on the cause of conservation for me.

Damn, That's from a 23 year old guy talking like he is 60.
but I can't help but feel Jaded, and taxed from pushing for greener change.

I.... have I lost the fight?

Maybe I should take more heed from naruto's never say die spirit instead of Thinking of passing the baton on..from Jiraiya who didn't have a choice.



The Rant/ Rap at the start is paying homage to one of Narutonime's theme song- "Make some noise"

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Ulu temburong Canopy Walk, Brunei

brunei attraction


Ulu temburong

As stated by lonely planet and other guides, It really is not advisable to enter ulu temburong independently. But hey presto! according to the lonely planet website- here

Tour companies in BSB offer a variety of packages. The standard rate is around B$245 per person for a two-day trip to the park, including an overnight stay at a Murut village on the way up the Sungai Temburong. There’s plenty of scope for group rates and other discounts, though it’s cheaper by far to get the boat to Bangar and either book at the tourist office (B$85) or hang around and try to negotiate a ride-along with an existing group.

It turns out that this is the current situation here. (from my personal observations)

there are 4 operators.
only Ulu-ulu has a resort within the park.
Those located outside the park are Freme, Sunshine, Trandie Marina

Trandie is the oldest, running the tour for 12 years

trandie marina resort-they have an obstacle course for the adventurous individual/ teambuilding exercise

Trandie Marina Resort
The others are quite new, but they all have additions such as the rapid rider service ($15)

The boat ride up from BSB is still $6. The Water Taxi takes around 45minutes to arrive at the new jetty in Bangar. You can find the Jetty easily. Its a 5 minute walk from the local bus terminal.. just walk towards the big body of water and turn left.. just after a row of kedai makan, you'll arrive at the jetty. There are 2 companies running the water taxi, however the price is the same. the red taxis arrive slower, I heard. but the difference isn't that much ~5-10 minutes

Once you get to Bangar,
-the new bangar jetty
Bangar Jettythe tourist office is located just across the road.. in a non-descript building. Flanking the office, is the youth centre. (you can stay @ the youth centre by informing them before hand)

Your choices at this point is-
1) enquire at the Tourist office (they have pretty weird opening hours.. on some days they open at 10 and close at 2?!!)

2)Wait for other tourists groups to arrive and see whether you can tag along. But its quite a gamble. You need to pre-book your stay in the park, and from my experience, the price is the same- ie you won't be able to get the group rate by virtue of "joining" the group.

3)You can push your luck even further, though that will inadvertently making it even harder to turn back, by hitchhiking/ finding a taxi to send you to Batang duri (around ten minute's drive)
If you're all for adventure, I think the distance is fairly walkable. you can visit one of the few remaining longhouses- AMO longhouse- along the way. I estimate walking will take 30 minutes. Once you're there, you may book your stay/ day trip with Freme/ Trandie Marina Resorts.

4) Other options to get into ulu temburong is via the Outward Bounds Brunei (below is the yet to be completed OBB building)
outward bounds brunei or via The Universiti of Brunei Darusalam, Biology Department... and book your stay at the Kuala Belalong Field Research Centre. You need to contact Dr Zora, The lecturer in Charge.
It will be possible if there is a concurrent research group going though, they won't be able to cater to an individual going there. the research centre is located 1km upriver away from the park HQ..

What type of activities to do while in there?
1) Waterfall tours- there's Mr Small waterfall (where you can swim) and Mr Big waterfall ( photography only!)
Sungai apan waterfall

2) Canoeing
3) Suspension bridge walk..
5) Drift down river on floats, back to park HQ.

do discuss with the tour operator and see whether they can include all of that into a cheaper package.

As my main aim to be here is for the Sunrise canopy tour: here's some additional info:

Sunrise tours to the canopy is better done by the Ulu-ulu resort as they are located nearer.
you should get up at 5 am and should be able to get to the canopy within 30 minutes.

For Trandie, you need a minimum of 4 pax before they consider taking you on the sunrise tour.

Its actually quite a hassle for the Tour operators who need to pay their own workers overtime (they usually start work at 730am)
Thus if they wanna cater for guests at 4, their workers need to arrive by 3! and the forestry officials need to be notified 1 day beforehand
regarding the need to sign guests in at ungodly hours.

These inconveniences will be translated into costs which will be transferred to the consumer.
riverine forest
That said, It is still recommended that you take a sunrise tour should there be one.
The magnificient sight of mist covered can only be seen that way.
The Animals rise with the sun. Especially gibbons and I gather that you can hear their calls crescendo and reverberating throughout the forest when they rise and shine.

Hornbills, if they do fly in front of you,
hornbill silhouettewill do it early in the morning as well!- from what I heard.

however, the climb to the canopy isn't that tiring, if you make it the first event of your day,
instead of some ppl opting for the waterfall first. "Sheesh!"

In my case, I had to tag along with another group, and they went for the Sg Apan waterfall.river rocks After that, my legs became wobbly due to the uneven trek to the waterfall had my legs contorting into different positions, straining rather untrained muscle groups.- photos along the way to the waterfall:
river rocks
streamUnique rock patterns
rock pattern
The canopy walk is extremely safe, I did not experience any sway with the wind, maybe because there was no wind at 11am!!
the way up to the canopy walk

ulu temburong
Tension cables holding the tower in placetension cablesNote one single unit of the aluminium tower is about 2m in height

ulu temburong canopy walk
multiply that unit by 20-30
brunei Canopy walk

do climb up the observatory instead of going up and down the aluminium towers straight without once looking down, like some did! It defeats the purpose if you make the event a who gets down the fastest sorta test

It's a looooong way down
canopy walk, brunei
BangarDo you have fear of heights?
canopy walkbring a pair of binoculars..
but if your cam lens has a zoom function of at least 400mm equivalent, you'd do just fine.

canopy walk view
brunei forest(as I was on the tower @11am.. there were no misty sights, no hornbills, no gibbons, just swiftlets, bees and the occasional fly..lol)

pack at least 1 litre of water, you'll need it.

You won't get to see mount kinabalu though! Despite the sign.
Mt kinabalu
Now the boat ride into the National park is really something to be savoured.
you get 3 different types of experiences
Riding in the cool wind, with water splashing onto your face now and then,
boat rideriding into some turbulent waters... giving you lil pumps of adrenaline

river rapidYou'll see different species of riverine plants... some stretching up to 50 metres into the air...

towering forest
you'll feel that you're in a canyon sometimes, boxed in by the two riverbanks that climb straight up into the air.

The air is fresh, you'll want to remind yourself to take in a few extra breaths!
Sungai temburong
If you're really lucky, gibbon/monkey troupes would swing past and hornbills will fly over head.

river confluence
Its pretty safe to carry a DSLR on this boat trip, just make sure that you point it downwards and use the person sitting in front of you on the longbaoat as a shieldm Like I did!

You do not need a stabilizer in the form of a tripod/ monopod on the canopy, so save yourself the trouble of lugging it in, @$#$@&%&*. Yeah I did just that.

wear sleeveless clothing if you're not too fond of your own bong, and lather on some sunblock unless you wanna have JAX like arms like me () ()

Get a pair of amphibious shoes like this pair of ZABA northface trainers- sans socks.
Northface shoes
Alternatively, your tour operator will provide you with a pair of Jungle adidas- One piece Rubber shoes that have magnificent grip although not something you'll want to appear with in KLCC.

Rapid Rivers should be fun!

The river currents aren't that turbulent that they will throw you off. and the water isn't that deep at all. Still, should the conditions be less than ideal, the operators shall withdraw the event, and money back guaranteed.

Mosquito repellants aren't that high on my list- I don't think they really work anyways.

DON't forget to SWIM in the river! you must. once the equilibrium between your bodyweight and the downstream current is achieved, you'll find yourself slowly drifting underneath the canopy,looking at the underside of gigantic leaves.. an extremely soothing sight.

Fishing can only be done by locals, so don't think about it.
Here's a map for you!
map of ulu temburong

stay the night at Batang duri/ Go straight it for a night at the cabins of ULU=ULU.
I heard that there are cabins in the park, but since the tourist office has since moved from the general post office, I couldn't find it, and couldn't book a night there.

Maybe you can save more by informing the tour operators that you wish to camp instead of chalets, you'll be bringing your own meals etc.
I chose to camp instead of staying in the chalets
camp,tent It depends whether you've tasted local food. Trandie's fod is yum yum!!Trandie Marina Tours
For more photos of Brunei/ Ulu temburong, please visit My facebook album (1), (2)

I hope what I shared here has been useful, if you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me at willow.by.the.well@gmail.com


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