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Archive for June, 2009

PERHENTLAN ISLAND … 19TH JUNE 2009

Due north of Terengganu. (Lat: 05° 55.21N … 102° 43.49E)

MAP  OF MALAY PENN

* A GOOD SCHEMATIC SHOWING THE GEOGRAPHY OF THE MALAYSIAN PENNINSULAR … `PERHENTLAN ISLAND’ IS TOP-RIGHT! (Image courtesy Google Images)*

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* ANOTHER MAP SHOWING … `PERHENTLAN ISLAND’ IS CENTRE-RIGHT! (Image courtesy Google Images) *

 

 

 

 

 

 

I AM HARD TO PLEASE! … This is a seemingly highly attractive island for Diving Backpackers. But the noise from Discos and Karaoke systems travels SO well over water. Plus, I thought the last Island was cursed with water-taxis … multiply the problem by 100 times and you come close to the traffic here!

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* TYPICAL `BACK-PACKER’ ACCOMMODATION! (Image courtesy Google Images) *

I moved across the Bay after one chaotic night and discovered a reasonably quiet spot. Clear water and calm from any breeze coming from the East … a westerly would be another story. I can’t recommend these islands to senior cruisers … but, backpackers would have a ball!

Two nights here was enough for me and I was on my way back to Terengganu, via an over night stay at the southern end of Radang Island … and a return to Heritage Marina … to prepare for the crossing of the South China Sea.

SMECR-3-7

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RADANG ISLAND, MALAYSIAN EAST COAST … FROM 16TH JUNE 2009

RADANG ISLAND, EAST COAST, MALAYSIA … 16TH JUNE 2009

(Lat:         Long:         )

The rumour of previous cruisers takes you to a beautiful Bay on the NE coast of Radang Island … ???? nmiles north of Terengganu.  Crystal clear water … white sands … turtles and a whacking great Resort ashore.  This sort of facility brings many high-speed power boats (Taxis) primarily transporting people.  The drivers of these units always seem to be competing with each other for SPEED records!  And as a consequence all anchored craft are tossed around by the massive bow-wash created. 

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* RADANG ISLAND RESORT ... BEAUTIFUL CLEAR WATER ... WITH TURTLES! (Image courtesy Google Images) *

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* JUST ANOTHER GORGEOUS, CALM SUNSET ... Yaaawn! *

 

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* RADANG ISLAND MARINE PARK ... BABY TURTLE BREEDING GROUND! (Image courtesy Google Images) *

Towards sunset along came a dozen large wooden fishing boats that anchored with little regard for swing radius. I guess they and their forebears have been doing it for centuries … and the visiting fiberglass monsters are just new unwelcome intruders?

 

SMECR-3-5

ooOoo

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TERENGGANU, EAST COAST, MALAYSIAN PENNINSULAR … 7TH TO 16TH JUNE 2009

Heritage Bay Marina, Terengganu, Malaysia …

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* A SMALL MARINA, BUT VERY MODERN. ATTACHED TO A NEW'ISH RESORT COMPLEX. *

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* THE BEST THING THAT HAPPENED TO ME AT `TERENGGANU ... 1ST MATE `CATHY' CAME ON-BOARD! *

Heritage Bay Marina, Terengganu, is a modern establishment, attached to a small Resort/Hotel … not many berths, but then it doesn’t need them as Terengganu is well away from the busy circuit of cruising, being halfway up the east coast of the Malaysian Peninsular … South of the Thai/Malay border.The Heritage Bay Marina/Ri-Yaz Heritage Resort & Spa Resort … seems to owe it’s origination to a single sailing event … The Monsoon Cup. There are six World Class racing yachts housed at this marina, tended by an Australian (David) from Perth, Western Australia … and he organises the Race and trains local crews.  

These are not huge yachts (about 10 metres) and are built in Perth. David explains world class Skippers and Crew descend on Terengganu, only once every year, to compete in a series of Match Races (I think that means only two yachts race at any one time … and losers are eliminated until, you guessed it, they have a winner!)He was also of the opinion the Race Series would end in the near future … what then of the Heritage Bay Marina.

* THE MARINA AND RESORT WAS ISOLATED FROM THE TOWN CENTRE ... HENCE A WATER-TAXI (FREE) TO TAKE PATRONS ACROSS THE BAY! *

 

This is another business which appears to be ill-conceived by Government/Business. The Terengganu area is a mini-Singapore … in as much as there are major reclamation works going on. Terengganu will be transformed in a few … no, quite a few years … given the continued influx of big money.

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* A LITTLE SITE-SEEING AT `MALACCA' WHILST WAITING FOR THE MAINSAIL REPAIR! ***** GREAT VIEWS FROM THE ROTATING `THING' HIGH ABOVE THE CBD OF `MALACCA', WEST COAST OF MALAYSIAN PENINSULA. *

Scott gave great service, picking me and the sail up from my Hotel in China Town, Malacca … and inspecting it at his massive out-of-town loft. Three days later the sail was returned to me along with a very affordable account. (MR450.00 … about AU$180.00)

I had the time to look around the centre of Malacca … BUT, I must be hard to please? There is one good attraction … a revolving platform which lifts you and many about 80 metres … giving a great 360° vista of Malacca City Centre and out to sea. That was Malacca to me!

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* `MALACCA' HAS STREET TRICYCLES WHICH COMPETE FOR `MOST COLOURFUL'! *

Back on the ship … with the first day recovering from the over-night bus trip from Malacca. The following day was refit-mainsail-day! And the sun was out in full force … it gets blistering and you strenuously avoid working in it … but, I had to as the refit is a long job and heavy work! Come 1500 hours and I was knackered … so much so I couldn’t think of what I was meant to be doing and small problems took on HUGE proportions of difficulty. By this time I had moored Déjà vu from a mooring 100 metres away from the marina to allow it to swing with the breeze. Even this plan was foiled by a strong outgoing tidal current. For today, I was beaten!

I must have looked so … as I heard a knock on the hull of Déjà vu (didn’t hear the dinghy come alongside as I had melted onto the roof of the cockpit) and a complete stranger called up to me … DO YOU NEED A HAND?   It took awhile for the offer to sink in … dead-slow brain reaction … and eventually it dawned on me, I did need a hand! And I conveyed this message to my new friend. He came aboard in a flurry … told me to relax as I looked done-in … and completely took over the refitting of the main. `Stranger’, Greg, of a magnificent French made Catamaran `Lady of Siam’ … saved my sanity, if not my life, that day and when slightly recovered I just followed his instructions and come sunset all was in place, better than the original installation … Greg made changes to the sail-cover rigging as he went.

To top it off … he invited me onboard `Lady of Siam’ for dinner … along with four other new friends he had made that day.

I’ll never forget this guy!!

 

Fully rigged … the main looked great!

SMECR-3-4

ooOoo

* `RE-YAZ HERITAGE MARINA' ... A GREAT DESIGN FOR A RESTAURANT ... NOT BAD FOOD EITHER! *

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KUANTAN … KUALA KEMAMAN … KAPAS ISLAND, EAST COAST, MALAYSIA … 2ND TO 5TH JUNE 2009

*** Please double-click photo to enlarge!

On the 31st May, a pleasant Reception, with entertainment, was held on the beach-front … next to the Hyatt Hotel.

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* THIS FISHING BOAT RAN AGROUND ENTERING `KUANTAN RIVER' ... CARELESSNESS SURELY? *

The following day the Rally organisers had arranged a bus tour to a Museum through the afternoon … and a generous Dinner at night (just a great pity the power failed early in the night) … with great entertainment by the State Dancing Troupe … a group of professions, lavishly dressed in colourful costumes.

Kuantan City (Lat: 03° 48.52N … Long: 103° 20.26E) … wasn’t a favourite stop-over by a long shot … and maybe the organisers may consider an alternative anchorage for the next Rally?

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* `DEJA VU' ... JUST IDLING ALONG ... NOT TOO MUCH WIND! *

There were no festivities, as a result of our unscheduled stop-over, but the town offered good service backup for the fleet with fuel, food, batteries etc., available. There were good onshore restaurants (some Chinese Houses, with beer!) Kemaman was a two night relief from Kuantan and much needed!

KAPAS ISLAND … 4TH JUNE 2009

(Lat: 05° 13.69N … Long: 103° 15.71E)

Déjà vu suffered a failure approaching Kapas Island … a `controlled’ jibe (we had a 20 knot breeze directly from astern) … not controlled enough it would seem as it resulted in a torn main sail.  Bugger!! 

* BADLY TORN MAINSAIL … DAMAGED DURING A `CONTROLLED JIBE’ … ENTIRELY MY FAULT! *
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* `KAPAS ISLAND' JUST SOUTH OF TERENGGANU TOWNSHIP ... EAST COAST OF MALAYSIAN PENINSULAR! *

 

We were about 17 nmiles SSE of Terengganu and I could only be hopeful there was a sail-maker or canvas worker in town?

Kapas Island offered crystal clear water and good snorkeling … but Déjà vu left early the next morning for Terengganu … and hopefully the services of a sail maker?

SMECR-3-3

ooOoo

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KUANTAN, EAST COAST, MALAYSIA … 2ND JUNE 2011

PEOPLE CAN BE GREAT … INCOMPREHENSIBLE, BUT GREAT!

(Lat: 03° 48’52N … Long: 103° 20’26E)

*** Please double-click on photos to enlarge them! 

<   Sorry … it was too hot for photography in Kuantan, so I’ve added a few general interest shots!   >

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* THE FRIUT/FLORA RESEARCH STATION NORTH OF SEBANA COVE ... HAS A SMALL ZOO! *

 

I needed fuel. Lots of it by Déjà vu standards (180 litres!) This was going to be a challenging job:

 

o Load nine 20 litre cans (the Yanks call them Jugs) into the inflatable dinghy.

o Motor about one kilometer downstream, to Polis (that’s how they spell it) Headquarters.

o Transfer (chuck) cans onto the very high, black, Polis floating pontoon.

o Due to tropical sun you could fry eggs on the horizontal surfaces … yes, it’s bloody hot to touch!

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* I THINK THIS MONKEY HAD LOST SOMETHING IN THIS GUYS HAIR? *

o Carry empty cans through Polis quadrangle (un-researched so far as the need for approval is concerned … this was The Marine Polis Headquarters?)

o Leave cans at Polis Security Box at entrance to quadrangle. (Nobody in Box!)

o Walk through town to find a Teksi (that’s how they spell it?) Teksi’s will not stop when hailed!

o Walk to Bus Terminal where Tekis’s are waiting for fares. (It’s easier than stopping at roadside.)

o Convince driver with sign language (as he doesn’t know a word of English … and I don’t know any Malay) what I want to do. Following a phone conversation with his boss, who does understand some English … he accepts fare and we try to find Polis Headquarters.

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* ELIZABETH (SV LARBARQUE) BEING IMPRESSED BY THE MANAGER OF THE RESEARCH STATION! *

o Return to Polis Headquarters where the Tekis driver nervously asks ME“if he is allowed to drive in?” I suppose it could have looked a security risk … as I was taking 180 litres of highly-volatile gasoline into the centre of a Law Enforcement area.

o Teksi driver accepts MY approval for him to enter and I direct him to the head of the jetty leading down to the dinghy.

o We unload the cans and I tip the driver for being so cooperative.

  • With him out-of-the-way … I turned around to find the Polis Headquarters Security Guard, grinning at me!  This lad was about sixty-seventy, not-out … he had about four teeth in his whole head … and the poor guy was ugly.  God wasn’t able to do anything for him.  I thought `now I’m in for it?’  No, `my friend’ pointed down at the cans, picked two up and marched them out to the dinghy??  What a man!  I made a similar gesture and in five minutes we had the cans on the pontoon, above the dinghy.   

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* THIS SWALLOW FOUND A COMFORTABLE PLACE TO REST? *

He instantly took in the situation … how was this man, single-handedly, going to lower the nine cans, full of fuel, into this floating balloon? My new friend gestured to me (no language compatibility) to somehow, get into the dinghy and he would lower them down. What a magnificent idea. This I did and within two (2) minutes I was ready to leave. (Thinks me … “This guy is angling for a tip … and he has earned it”.) I whip out MR10.00 and hand it up to him … and he knocked it back!   He was helping for the good feeling it gave him … and I was just as happy … but a little stunned!

What a great Guy … a very poor Security Guard … but, a great guy!

SMECR-3-2

ooOoo

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