Malaysia Week 2

Saturday the 7th found us again at Miri airport (5th day in a row of flying in/out of there for Kat and I!). This time bound for Sibu in central Sarawak as the transit point for our stay in Sarikei.

Sarikei is where Kat’s father, Alfred, grew up and many of the Yii family still live there alongside the family farm. It’s a much, much, much smaller placevthan Miri and we found the pace quite slow for the three days that we were there. However after the busy week we had while in Miri, a bit of downtime in Sarikei was not at all a bad thing!

Kat’s Uncle Q is building a large bird house, 3 stories! so that he can start up a new business selling bird nests. The birds that will be attracted to the bird house build nests using their saliva and a considered a delicacy in much of Asia, fetching close to NZD$300 each! We had a look around his partially constructed birdhouse and also drove past a few existing bird houses around the town.

Wednesday (11th Apr) morning we got up very early at 4:30am to catch a taxi at 5am to arrive at Sibu airport for our 8:30am flight (it’s 120km from Sarikei to Sibu airport over one of the worst roads I’ve ever driven due to the new road construction happening alongside it). We got to the airport at 6:30 only to discover that Air Asia had retimed our flight to 11:50am! Luckily I had a book to read, but waiting 5 hours in an out of the way airport, with no WiFi or other entertainment options is not high on my list of must do holiday activities.

Eventually we arrived in Kuching, the largest city in the Malaysian half of Borneo. While in Kuching we caught up with Aunty Lang and stayed in an apartment owned by one of Kat’s uncles from Miri. The apartment complex had a great view out over Kuching city and a very nice pool.

Friday (13th Apr) ended our Malaysian holiday with another early morning flight from Kuching to Johar Bharu, and a short taxi ride across the border to Singapore. The immigration officer coming in to Singapore was the most officious women I have ever met, taking about 10 minutes to check our passports against our faces and then insisting on seeing our onwards air tickets! She
eventually decided we were worthy to be let in.

3 highlights from our Malaysian trip

  • Meeting Kat’s extended family and putting names to faces
  • Visiting Mulu caves and Kota Kinabalu
  • Sweet juicy tropical fruit like pineapple and dragon fruit

3 not-so-highlights from our Malaysian trip

  • Heat and humidity. Makes my glasses fog up every time I step outside!
  • Not being able to speak Chinese, and therefore not being able to communicate with most of the extended family I met
  • Strange (hot, spicy) food and Durian
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  1. Enjoying the travelogue- keep it up