tropicana ~ life is a kaleidoscope
Join The Princess in her journey of a plethora of changing colours and patterns

Pulau Manukan, Sabah

The Princess' holiday was a whirlwind of activites, she barely had time for a breather before she jumped onto the next plane to whisk her to another destination. As she mentioned earlier, she was in Manukan Island and then Kota Kinabalu, before spending the rest of the holiday in Taiwan. And along the way, small nuisances and misfortunes reared their ugly heads.

Firstly, dermatitis launced an all out assault on her lips (yes, she's going to talk about her lips again). And no, the sympton was not the usual one, oh no. Of course it had to guise itself. You know, when you get yourself a wound, a clear, yellowish liquid containing platelets will be produced to stop the bleeding? That liquid kept on forming on her lips, although she's not bleeding. And so she went to Pee Lee Si Clinic (this clinic has been around for as long as she can remember) in her hometown for SOS. And guess what? A small, Melaka town doctor beats all those dermatologists from Singapore Raffles Hospital and D*** Medical Centre flat down.

And so she had to go around with a mask over her mouth for a few days for she's a superficial, beauty-conscious bitch.

Day 1

Gloomy skies greeted them when they reached Kota Kinabalu. As they made their way to the jetty in order to get to Manukan Island, it began to drizzle.

Gloomy,gloomy sky

Everyone stares when you put on a mask in Malaysia. Jakun.

View from the jetty

Travel buddies - David, Mui (1st row) Ji Long, The Boy, The Princess (2nd row) Ryan, Naomi (hidden by Ryan) (3rd row)

After a short journey by boat, we finally reached Manukan Island. As they were checking in the Sutera Santuary Lodges, The Princess was half expecting to stay in some rundown attap houses labeled as chalet. She probably needed to get fresh water from a perigi but when she saw the accomodation, she was pleasantly surprised. The chalet came with Astro and boasted a seaview. The only downside was electricity was cut from 3-6 pm and 6-9 am daily to conserve energy. And oh, the stay came with complimentary daily sodium intake for all guests as the tap water was a tad salty due to the less than efficient filter.

The living room

Super dim bulbs are used to amp-up the kampung ambience

The rain kept them from frolicking at the beach. And so they spent the day cooped up in the chalet playing drinking games. And lots of chor di in between. And laughing at the boys boys' jokes and antics.

Dinner was a simple buffet affair

These were the cause of Ji Long (Chee Long? G Long? From now on, The Princess christens him Bruce) having swollen eyes the next morning

Day 2

What a better way to kick start the day other than with a cup of steaming coffee with Bailey's. Yum. That morning was all sunny and nice, and they all changed into swimgear and jumped right into the sea.

Terence tak habis-habis catch crabs

A late intro, on the left is Terence and on the right is Arfoo

Arfoo was complaining his "member" kept being exposed in the water as he was wearing underpants and worse, a gwaipo was nearby. Don't worry, Arfoo, she probably thought it was some sea worm.

Everyone spent the morning in a relaxing manner. Some went snorkelling, some went swimming, one catched crabs and another went looking for hemp plants, and The Princess chor di-ed, naturally.

In Manukan Island, sea activities comes in 2 prices - one for locals and another for gwailos. So remember to bargain hard should you plan to go to Manukan the next time. At noon, we tried out the Scuba-Doo.

The brightly coloured Scuba-Doo

Basically, it's diving without getting your hair wet. Scuba-Doo is a vehicle(?) that carries you into a limited depth of the ocean. You ride on it as if riding a bike, but your head is contained in an oxygen infused viewing chamber. Due to pressure, water will not be able to enter this chamber to keep you from drowning. It comes with a steering wheel and a useles speed button for navigation. Useless because there's only one speed and that's the slower-than-a-herd-of-turtles-stampeding-through-peanut-butter speed.

The Princess chup the white Scuba-Doo

Nubile young things

Under the water, The Princess was a bit dissapointed as there's not much fishes to see. The divers passed them a sea cucumber. And then she realised, ALL the divers share a common strategy - if in doubt, just show your clients sea cucumber to keep them happy, because they did the same thing in Redang. The more interesting encounter would be with Nemo. They actually took turn holding a sea anemone with 2 clown fishes playing hide and seek on it. It was most curious as the clown fishes actually stayed within the perimeter of the sea anemone no matter how you played with them or moved the anemone. At one point, The Princess almost brought the sea anemone into the oxygen chamber when God luckily gave her back her common sense in time.

Ryan and Arfoo in their private jacuzzi

The next time you're buried in the sands and your friends are around to decorate you, be very afraid. Because from their private jacuzzi, Ryan and Arfoo were transformed into what The Princess could only term as very freaky Siamese twins.

In case you're wondering, this is what conjoined twins do during free time.

And here's what bored, conjoined twins' brothers do during free time.

The artists and their masterpiece

The rest of the evening was spent lazing around the small hut near the chalet. The girls were playing chor di and drinking. The boys were crab hunting before engaging in a game of water war, splasing water like some silly 5-year-olds. These scenes are a bit like terbalik right?

Sports Illustrated models

The Boy looks so pek chek

Lunch and dinner were again at the same restaurant as Sutera Harbour Lodges is the only resort operator here. Right after dinner, The Princess went straight to bed. She found out the next morning that the boys went crab hunting and watched the crabs do arm wrestling the whole freaking night! Can die.

Hermit crabs for dinner, anyone?

Day 3

What a glorious day! Today's weather was the best and today's their last day in Manukan before heading to the mainland.

Sempat suntan lagi

After much frantic packing, it's off to the jetty. Seriously, vacations would be so much more fun if packing and unpacking could be taken out of the equation. Who would want to sit down and move stuff around looking like a dork?

One for the boys

And one for the girls

Wah! Fish leh

Goodbye, sun-kissed tropical island

Say hello to the boatman, Malaysia. Seriously, he's name after Malaysia cos he's born on Independent Day

The lifejacket says it all

This is Bruce and Ice. Their hobby is sleeping and God knows what they do in the room

This is Ryan and Naomi. Their hobby is making funny faces

This is Arfoo. His hobby is basically looking for hemp plants

It's been fun in the island. Now, let's get away from a body of water to solid ground, shall we?

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