Published: July 5th 2010July 5th 2010
Blog 4 - The journey to Lembeh.......
Since my last blog i have stayed in Kota Bharu, Kuala Lumpur, The crowne plaza hotel in Singapore (il explain that later in the blog) and on a bench outside Changi Airport and finally i am in Lembeh, Sulawesi!!
So thats the easy bit out of the way, now the journey here was fairly broken up so wasnt too bad, i stayed in Kota Bharu(KB) for 2 nights, it was originally going to be one but then realised if i got the night bus then i would miss the England vs Germany game so changed it. Needless to say i know regret making that change as it was a complete waste of my time and money but oh well at the joys of hindsight!!!
So from KB i took a night bus to KL, everything started off well until about 2 hours into the journey and the bus broke down, after that we managed to get another bus and we jumped on that instead, so again 2 more hours and just my bloody luck the bus broke down!!! So after helping them change the flat tyre ( i was one of
5 men on the bus and the only westerner!!) i was nominated as being strong (haha i know its funny but compared to the caliber of men i was with i looked very built!!!) So after changing the tyre we set off again and i went back to sleep (freezing my ass off by the way as the locals dont understand can be turned down!!) when the bus finally stopped i got off and got my bags and looked around and realised we werent in KL........ this wasnt funny, 6am in some random Malaysian town and very tired and confused! so i spoke to the driver and managed to find out we are in Klang, Klang is a town 45minutes past KL.... When i asked why we were here he said that it was the final destination, apparently know one told him everyone wanted to go to KL (Idiots!!) so i managed to get a nice taxi driver to drop his rate by 3/4 of the price and take me to KL!!
The next few days i spent in KL just relaxing, booking accomodation and flights for my trip to sulawesi, from KL i got the "night bus" to
Singapore, little did i know that when they say night bus you arrive in Singappore at midnight!!! On arriving in Singapore i tried to get some Sing dollars out of an ATM only to find that HSBC had put a block on my card as it was being used abroad (despite telling them on 3 occasions that i would be in Asia!!!) so there i was stuck in the middle of nowhere in Singapore nowhere near me and Luce where dropped last year and with no local currency!! Eventually managed to get some cash out of an ATM and then got a taxi to Changi airport.......Now this is where it got interesting...... whilst i was in KL i asked a certain family member (who wont be named... but you know who you are!)to do some checks on accomodation at the airport as i was only going to be there for 2 nights and 1 day and didnt want the hassle of staying in town, so i was told there is an airport hotel in every terminal and the ridiculously priced crowne plaza hotel.
So on arriving at the airport i asked how to get to the hotel, i was then
told there is only 1 hotel and its the crowne plaza..... i asked about the other 3 hotels and was then told they were for after checking in only!!! DOH!!!by this point it is 1am and i am extremley tired and dont have the energy to go back into singapore to get a hotel so i threw money at the situation and booked in for one night only, (i decided that the other night i would just sleep in the airport itself!)
The crowne plaza was amazing and i looked completely like a fish out of water with my massive rucksack, shorts, singlet and sweaty and unshaven!!! the room After getting a late checkout the next day i managed to blag a free membership to the hotels premier club which meant that i could use the lounge etc even if i wasnt staying there!! Bonus!! so this meant free drinks, buffet and wifi until 8, from there i went into the airport bar which was showing the football, after that i decided to head to the airport and find a comfy spot to spend the night, after about 3 hours of sleeping i was woken up by a security guard
who asked me to leave the terminal!!! even though there was loads of locals sleeping in there 2!!!
So i moved from there to a bench outside the terminal and slept for another few hours on and off before getting up and going to collect my bags from storage before i went to the terminal too check in.
Check in etc was all very smooth and so was boarding, then the real fun began!!!
The flight was smooth for 5 minutes after take off and then it was like riding the big dipper for 3 hours due to turbulence, sat next to a korean couple who were screaming and whimpering the entire trip!! the only time it stopped was when we made our descent. I dont know if the pilot had been out having a few beers the night before or whether it is a standard approach to an airport but we started making a nosedive spiral for the airport(this was the only time i have ever felt physically sick on a plane!!) Eventually we landed like a bouncing bomb dropped from a dam buster and we finally got off that nightmare!!
The immigration in Sulawesi is only
rivalled by Miami airport when it comes to be the slowest process known too human kind, but eventually got out the airport and got picked up by the driver from the hotel. The rest of the journey was very easy and when i arrived at my destination it was very good.
So now i am here staying at NAD Lembeh resort in sulawesi doing some amazing diving and i will be here until Saturday, i will blog again in a few days
showing you the diving here and what i have been seeing..... needless to say its worth the wait!!!
Take care and hope your enjoying the blogs!!
There are more photos below