Day 10 - Selamat Jalan Mr Aji

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August 9th 2011
Published: August 10th 2011
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Day 10 was another day of chilling in the heat. We were up and awake by 6 (half due to the 'other residents' doing their usual banging, shouting and eating everything in sight; partly due to the cockrel that crows around half 4 and lastly due to our alarms) and getting ready to leave Sukau. After toast, pinapple jam and tea, we set off in Mr Aji's jungle jeep for a road walk near the Gomantong Caves.

By this time it was approaching 9am and the temperature was rising. Although it was an easy 3k walk on the road, it was a sweaty affair. We saw LOTS of flying, buzzy things, AKA butterflies. Well I say we, I hid under my umber-olly, which I was using to shade my skin from the scorching sun. We saw some more birds, saw Charles and Inger attempting to give each other piggy backs and a group of short tailed macaques.

After a while even Mr Aji had had enough of being hot and sweaty, so we wandered back to the jeep and it's air-con. And back to Sandakan.

The ride back was unexciting, but nice and cool. We were back at Panangakan Dii by half 11. We got our room key, for the hut adjoining the one we'd stayed 2 night previously, and went to shower off the walk sweat.

We headed back to the main lodge to use the WIFI and have a juice. We just relaxed in the shade from the midday sun, chatting with all the other guests who were busying themselves doing not very much at all.

At about 4 we wandered back to our room, showered again, as it was that hot and sweaty out there, and watched a bit of a film on the netbook. We noticed I'd been nibbled on by a spider. Spiders like to bite me.

At 7pm we headed to the lodge for a beer and dinner. The food was lovely. Daniel had a 'mild beef curry' and I had 'barracuda steak with ginger and garlic sauce'. Both meals were cheap and filling. It was at this point that a rather uneventful day finally became a little more interesting. First, the wind picked up. We shared a laugh about this. It picked up a little more. We ignored it and I carried on as we were. Then the rain came...

An absolute bucketload of rain. Truly tropical rain. It was pelting it down, so much so we had to go into the lodge itself and tried to wait out the storm that was brewing. It was relentless, the staff were litteraly battering down the hatches and tryng to stop it from soaking us all, using the big bamboo blinds that were usually rolled up in the eaves of the lodge.

In the meantime there was little else to do than make small talk with some teachers about academies in the UK and watch Daniel roll his eyes about teachers talking about nothing but school, no matter where they are.

After around half an hour we got bored and thought "screw this". So we braved the thunder, epic lightning and the rain and walked (Dan a lot quicker than me) to our hut. We opened the balcony door and watched the magnificent lighting blasts light up the sky with blinding forks and sheets. It was beautiful. The thunder was loud, grumbling and lengthy. And, as there were few beasties out to get us, we managed to use the outside loo in the dark without being eaten alive.

We went to bed as the storm finally passed overr and had our last sleep in the jungle!


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