Wednesday, November 13, 2013

46th trip to Bintulu - 11 November'13

Typical Sarawak country road, from Kuching to Bintulu

 With this 46th trip to Bintulu our accumulated distance traveled stands at 53,800 km. As usual on board this trip was  Inul, fospa and fosma.  We left Kuching at 9.30 am and this time around the trip took us a little longer time because of the rainy season or monsoon which brings in much rain throughout Sarawak for at least a duration of four months starting November.  Soon after leaving Kuching fospa had a short break at Serian for morning breakfast.  Thereafter it was an uninterrupted journey if not for three pit stops i.e. at Sri Aman for lunch, Sibu for refuelling and Selangau for dinner.
At the town of Sri Aman we had our lunch in the car while fospa and fosma ate at a cafetaria in the center of the town.  Fospa had a hearty meal of rice with fish and vegetables of the 'Cekur manis' (Savropus androgynus) with the local pumpkin or Labu merah fruit (Cucurbita moschata) (See picture at inset).

We had lunch inside the car at a cool and heavily shaded car parking area in the town center.

Fospa had to put the orchids inside the car to prevent damage to the flowers .

Sri Aman town

Vegetables and fruits at the tamu or jungle produce market
 We rested for about an hour at Sri Aman to check out the jungle produce market or locally called'Tamu' and for lunch.  Two items that were of interest to fospa were the 'Engkala' fruits ( inset shows the round green and unripe fruits of the Engkala) and the shoots of the 'Lalis' which is a rattan species is shown below.
Shoots of the 'Lalis' - Plectocomiopsis geminiflora, a rattan species which is cooked as vegetable.
At the top of the picture is the stem of the rattan climber not yet unbarked.

Rain most of the way because this is end of year monsoon period.
Cantin at Selangau pit stop
From Sri Aman to Bintulu we encountered heavy rains and thus the time to arrive Bintulu took a few hours longer.  We arrived home at 9.30 pm in rain and darkness but the journey was a safe one.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

45th trip to Kuching - 53,200 km added

View of Sibu town in the distant as we drove on the Ulu Lanang tol bridge.

Road after Ulu Lanang tol bridge,Sibu.
ETD Bintulu - 10.00 am
ETA Kuching - 8.15 pm
 On this 45th trip to Kuching we encountered many stretches of the Sarawak trunk road under repair.  This is an ongoing project by the Federal government to make driving along the country road more safe.  Thus for many years to come they will be more such works undertaken and more inconvenience to road users.  First pit stop was at Selangau for an early lunch.  At the car park where we rested, we saw a small Pulasan (Malay) tree bearing young fruits.  Selangau is a convenient stop over between Bintulu and Sibu.  It is a one and a half hour drive from Bintulu.

Young fruits of the 'Pulasan' at car park, Selangau.

Mama Daisy resting on the dashboard at Sebangkoi rest area, Sarikei.
 After Selangau we drove direct to Sarikei, by-passing the town of Sibu.  As usual we prefer to take the 2nd pit stop at Selangau.  Fospa had a good stroll at the park.  Below are some views fospa took of the park at Selangau.
Water lily pond at Sebangkoi rest area, Sarikei.

Path walk around the Sebangkoi rest area, Sarikei.

Forest view at Sebangkoi rest area, Sarikei.
 Views of the federal project for Sarawak :
On many stretches of the Sarawak trunk road from Kuching to Miri will be constructed overtaking lanes to help out in the safety and driving convenience of the trunk road users.  This project will take on a few years and started in 2012 in a big way.....
Overtaking lane under construction

A completed overtaking lane along Sarawak trunk road

Entrance to Sri Aman town from Temudok rest area.

Mountain view on approaching Serian

Medium rain while approaching Kuching city.
It has been a long but safe journey.  Fospa and fosma shared the driving.  Inul was a good girl this time around. One a while she would allowed me to rest my head on her back as pillow.  Thanks Inul--you are a sweet girl!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

45th trip to Bintulu - 26 August'13 (52,600 km)

Fospa resting his arm on Mama's back....fantastic therapy

 It has been about two weeks that we spent the holidays in Kuching.  Now that the Hari Raya celebrations are over, fospa decided that we should go back to Bintulu on Monday, 26th of August.  On this 45th trip to Bintulu we had an additional passenger on board.  Fospa and fosma agreed to give him a free ride to Bintulu.  We started the journey around 9.30 am in fine weather. 
Mama Daisy and Inul having a last look at the house..

 Underneath the leaves cover is hidden our special passenger.  The leaves were taken from the garden to be used as shield against the hot sun.  The special passenger is a tomcat belonging to fospa's niece.

 First pit stop was at Serian.  At the Serian fish market there were many foreign tourists who took pictures and having fun time talking to the fish mongers about the different types of fishes for sale.

Sibu traffic junction..
 Inul saw many buses and lorries stopping at Selangau.  Selangau is the last pit stop before we drove straight to Bintulu.  From Selangau it took us 1 hour 30 minutes to reach Bintulu.
Canteen at Selangau....
 We left Selangau at 7.30 pm ....and arrived Bintulu at around 9.00 pm.
Blackie...the special passenger
With this trip we achieved a cumulative distance of 52,600 km.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

44th trip to Kuching - 12 August'13 (52,000 km)

Inul and Mama Daisy

Inul on fosma's lap
 On this 44th trip to Kuching we were accompanied by fosis and her hubby but they drove in a separate car.  Inul is getting better now, less of a fuss.  Inul loves also to rest on fosma's lap (see inset).  We left Bintulu at 11.00 am and is rather late than usual.  Thus we expected to reach Kuching around 10 pm.  The journey was a bit slowed down because of some traffic snarl and jam on certain stretches due to the narrowness of the two-lane single carriageway Sarawak trunk road and the extra vehicles on the road due to the Hari Raya festive season.  
Typical Sarawak trunk road - narrow and two-lane single carriageway  of about 600 km length from Kuching in the south to Miri in the north.

Sebangkoi water lily pond
 We stopped for a short while at Selangau and Sibu to cool down the engines and a little rest.  Most of the resting was reserved for our mid-stop at Selangau.  At Selangau there is a convenient rest area that is just besides the highway.  The car parking area is well shaded and provided with basic amenities like toilet and washroom ans a small park with a lovely water lily pond. (see inset at right)
Durio grandiflorus (Durian munyit)
 At Sebangkoi rest area, fospa was extremely excited to have noticed a species of the Durian or 'King of the Fruits' (Durio grandiflorus or locally called 'Durian munyit') bearing white flowers in abundance on its branches and some fallen on the water lilies and water below
White flowers of the Durio grandiflorus (Durian munyit)

Durian flowers on water lilies at Sebangkoi

Driving into the sunset , between Sri Aman and Serian stretch...
The rest of the journey from Sebangkoi was at  nice cruising speed of around 90 -100 kph drive.  Our final pit stop was at Temudok rest area, just outside the town of Sri Aman.  After we left Sri Aman it was a beautiful drive into the sunset.  We arrived Kuching at 10 pm and experienced no rain the whole journey. With this trip our cumulative traveling record stands at 52,000 km.  Looking forward to spending the rest of the Hari Raya celebrations in Kuching with friends and relatives in the city.....

Friday, July 26, 2013

44th trip to Bintulu (51,400 km)

 On this 44th trip to Bintulu, Inul and Mama Daisy accompanied fospa.  Fosma decided to drive the black Myvi to Bintulu for use during the Hari Raya there because fosis and her husband  from KL will be spending a few days of raya in Bintulu.
We left Kuching at 9.30 in the morning and the whole journey took about 11 hours.
Here's more pics of our 44th trip to Bintulu.

Road under repair between Serian and Sri Aman

On this trip the sky was blue throughout Sarawak's countryside.  We encountered not a single drop of rain.

Just before reaching the Sebangkoi pit stop i.e. about 36 km away from Sarikei we passed by an accident scene.   The policemen were seen busy doing their investigation works .  Fospa took a bit of time to inquire from the people about the accident.  Apparently a motorcyclist that tried to overtake a lorry couldn't make it in time and instead got into a head-on collision with an oncoming Kancil car.  The woman driver and passenger of the car were badly hurt but unfortunately the young male motorcyclist was killed in the accident.
Scene of an accident involving a Kancil car and a motorcylce at Sg. Kedang, 36 km from Sarikei.

The black Myvi driven by fosma is ahead of us...

Inul takes a rest at Selangau pit stop.

Driving closer to Bintulu we saw the moonlight night.  Fospa decided to take a picture of the moon (see inset).
Fosma arrived earlier at the farm than us.
We only arrived home at 8.30 pm.
With this trip we clocked in another 600 km, thus making a total of 51,400 km of  accumulated travelling time for Mama.
Mama Daisy is a calm, patient and keen traveller.  Inul is just following in her catwalk ......
The moon at the farm on our arrival.