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Published: April 19th 2012
For my Grade 5 Excusion week we went to Palau Besar in Malaysia.
Palau Besar is an Island of Mersing, Johor and is a tropical paradise with tree-covered mountains and white sand beaches.
On the way there, we went on the PIE highway to the Tuas second link bridge,the longest bridge in Malaysia and Singapore. After we went through the check point (which had a wave hanger design), we went on the second link Tollway that connected with the North-South Fwy in Johor Bahru,the capital of Johor. We took that for awhile and then switched to the 3 to Mersing, the 3 went through fields of palm oil trees stretching toward the horizon. (The trees produce palm oil used to make plastic but in order to do that you have to release lots of Carbon Dioxide which is bad for the environment.) After we got to Mersing,we took a 45 minute ferry ride to the island of Palau Besar.
Once we got there, we had lunch and figured out who was in our cabin. We then did the Amazing Race where we had to set up a tent and answer all these trivia questions and the team that
did it the fastest won. Our Cabin had a hole in the bathroom and bugs climbed in but luckily we did have a Gecko who likes to eat bugs.
On Monday we did Arts and Crafts and I made a Tye Dye T-shirt. In the afternoon we went snorkeling and saw fish. What is sad is that there was a lot of dead bleached white coral and when my Dad and Mom went 17 years ago to the same area there was tons of coral. There where some coral in strips with a ton of fish. That night was Disco night and we danced in a big group.
On Tuesday morning, our task was to build a fire and cook an egg. We probably would've not had a fire but luckily one person on our team was brave enough to light the match and put it on our fire. But I was the only person who knew how to set up a fire and as a result, we had a really good fire! This other Team had trouble lighting the fire because they were afraid. They were able to light the match but couldnt put the match in
the fire so they ran out of matches. In the afternoon we did Orienteering.
That night there was a Coconut Idol and the teachers dressed up as the judges from the American Idol show. Mainly people did songs but the one that won was a comedy show about "How to be a Ninja"and it was really funny. That night a big spider came into our bathroom and the Gecko went to bite it and the spider fell off the celing and supposedly died. However the next day we found the Gecko dead because the spider came back for revenge and poisened him.
On Wednesday we did a hike to the other side of the island where there was a hidden beach, big waves and steep rock cliffs.We had to climb over the mountain chain that was on the island and the highest point on the trail was 250 meters at the pass. The trail was very small and we had to go up some steep parts so the teachers had to climb up first and put down a rope so that we could climb. This wasn't like Mt. Rainier where there are trails, we were pretty much walking through the jungle and a man had to be ahead bush whacking so we could pass. My team beat the School record of all time (including years past) by doing the hike in 1 hour and 54 minutes, beating the last record by 2 minutes and 33 seconds.
That afternoon we had to build a raft. Our team was given 3 long bamboos, 3 short bamboos,and 3 tires. The boys all came up with different designs but my design won because it had the most space and the girls wanted a lot of space so I convinced them to vote for mine. The boys were good at designing but luckily the girls were good at tying knots (the boys couldn't tie knots very well) so in the end, we had a pretty good raft. Our raft was the best since it floated straight and didn't break. One team's raft broke when they put it in the water and another team had a triangle shape so it spun around and they had a hard time getting back in. During our free time, I built a sand city with my friends on the beach and played in the swimming pool. That night we roasted marshmallows over the fire and ate S'mores.
The next day we ate breakfast and got ready to leave. Since the ferry was late we did some stuff then got on the ferry back to Mersing, In Mersing it said they were going to build a German-Mersing Institute that I don't think was ever going to be built. Once we got into Johor Bahru we got on The North-South Fwy and went towards Singapore. There seemed to be lots of cheap "Big Box"stores on the road to Singapore and apartment complexes that are "cheaper than in Singapore." Then it started to rain and we got stuck in traffic. We started at 10:30am and entered Johor Bahru at 3:45PM.
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