Dedicated to a wonderful Mother Jean Noble 31/5/1929 - 20/8/2007 - may we never take our mothers for granted. - Goodbye Mum


The picture above is Mr Anwar Ibrahim, I have come to admire this man as I have learned of his courage and his humanity. His story can be seen Here, To me it epitomises a dark period in the “judicial” history of this beautiful country. I was in the “Transit Villa Guesthouse when this terrible injustice began to unfold. He is STILL (2008) being “dogged” by the “powers that be”, attempting new charges – to silence him.

The song “to know Malaysia is to love Malaysia” made famous by Sudirman Arshad, Sudirman has received standing ovations in my home country Australia, due to his beautiful voice. It was one song I heard a long time ago, having been here over 20 times. Its beautiful warm hearted people, means for a caring society. I (Mal) truly love this country. It is so “alive” and vibrant. Both of us look forward to cycling and seeing the people from the ground up.

I have a “Long Shot” request of any reader out there, I have lost touch with a dear friend, Rosie Lim, Rosie owned the Transit Villa Guesthouse in Jalan Chow Kit. During the 1980's - 90's and beyond. The place is now closed and despite asking lots of locals, no one seems to know where she is now. ANY information is most welcome.

We'll let you know how we find this country – good and bad :-)

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Money in Aussie Dollars

May 12th 2008 Singapore Changi Ferry Terminal to Johor Malaysia
19.61k's Average Speed 11.15kph Cycling time 1Hr(s) 44Min. Max speed. 21kph Max temp we recorded 37°C
Mostly Flat, Road Conditions: Good. Daily Costs: Food/Water $11.00 Overnight Accommodation:$17.00
We Rose at 5am knowing we faced a “Border Crossing”, with all it's associated hassles. We wanted to be on the first boat as we reckon (from our experience) that we get there before all these immigration guy's and girls have been upset by the “general public”.
We arrived at Changi Terminal at 0630am and began the long wait... at 0830, the boat owner came to us and said they were two people short (They need min, twelve before they will leave).. The asked us is we wanted to pay an extra $5.00 Singapore each given we have BIG bikes. If we paid they would leave... It was a no-brainer for us, we had no coffee or breakfast and the stress of the impending customs procedures were still to be faced.
We sailed through a cheerful and helpful Singapore customs and began the task of loading our bikes on a rather small boat Our bikes were put at the rear and loaded by a

VERY helpful Captain.

Then followed an hours journey through the “Straits of Johor”. It was safer for both us and bikes to sit on them with brakes FULLY on.

We were helped by the Captain to unload and were whisked through a very cheerful customs... Never, have we been so nicely treated, as by both the Singapore and Malaysian customs people.
We were pretty beat by the time we reached Malaysia so cycling was not our first stop. We happened on a small café on the side of the road and had fried rice with an egg on top, plus a large coffee... 

Suitably refreshed albeit a very small meal.. we began cycling the quiet roads of eastern Malaysia. 

Our intention was to go to the first sizable town and get a hotel.. As always we need to watch our bikes.. We eventually found a nice hotel at a little under $17.00 Aussie dollars ( about ₤8.00). The owners allowed us to park our bikes in the “Rice Store rooms”... Fantastic.
May 13th 2008 Sungai Rengit Pengerang, Johor Malaysia – exploration day
k's Average Speed kph Cycling time Hr(s) Min. Max speed. kph Max temp we recorded °C
Mostly Flat, Road Conditions: Good. Daily Costs: Food/Water $ Overnight Accommodation:$17.00
We will follow our new format and explore as we see places of interest. - yesterday we scored an unsecured internet for a few minutes – not enough time to email but a “partial” site update was possible.
Not a very eventful day, purchased things we need for the new environment (Much cheaper than Singapore), Looked at the local sights and sampled the amazingly cheap food... A small local meal + coffee can be had for less than $2.00... Very tasty food and it is fine for us. Actually we cannot cook for less, so will probably eat “local” almost all of the time..
A few clothes were necessary for the climate, plus we cut down some pants and had them “hemmed” all for $3.00... Catchya Later
May 14th 2008 Remain Sungai Rengit Pengerang
k's Average Speed kph Cycling time Hr(s) Min. Max speed. kph Max temp we recorded °C
Mostly Flat, Road Conditions: Good. Daily Costs: Food/Water $ Overnight Accommodation:$33.00
We had packed all our gear the night before, ready for an early start. The morning came and we were treated to a magnificent display of nature's fury. An electrical storm of incredible intensity and torrential rain. We decided to remain and sit it out. Both Lee and I are not overly afraid of lightening (Despite 1,000's of deaths per year), however, unless travel is essential, there is no need to tempt fate.

May 15th 2008 Sungai Rengit Pengerang to Desaru
38.03 k's Average Speed 12.11kph Cycling time 3Hr(s) 08Min. Max speed. 46kph Max temp we recorded 38°C
Hilly, Road Conditions: Good. Daily Costs: Food/Water $ Overnight Accommodation:$33.00
The heat combined with the humidity, made for a hard ride... several stops to cool down and VERY heavy water usage. We stopped at a roadside café where we had 4 coffee's – two hot two cold.. and a chicken dinner. Total cost $3.90...

Moving off was hard after the iced coffee :-) Saw lots of wildlife including a giant Lizard and lots of Monkeys.. The countryside is mostly “Palm Oil” Plantations with the only natural vegetation, being on the roadside reserves.

The roads are relatively quiet and to date the drivers very courteous... We saw a resort offering rooms including food for about $34.00 a night..

They were telling the truth :-) so we booked in... Catchya Later...

May 16th 2008 Desaru to Sedili Damai Resort
38.00 k's Average Speed 13.26kph Cycling time 2Hr(s) 51Min. Max speed. 50kph Max temp we recorded 39°C
Hilly, Road Conditions: Good. Daily Costs: Food/Water $ Overnight Accommodation:$24.00
Left our lovely resort late morning... View from our room window...

View from pool....

Chugged along at breakneck speed in searing heat... Not certain but I think that is our highest average speed... Good roads, light traffic and courteous drivers made for a nice ride. Saw two girls on touring bikes pass us, going the other way. Despite Lee shouting “Please Stop and talk” they absolutely refused to acknowledge us.... Sad we could have exchanged valuable information. We are clearly in the “sticks” as there are no towns, villages or ANYTHING between stops... We came close (about two litres reserve between us) to exhausting our water supply today... The temperatures are not new to us but the humidity is... It is like cycling in a sauna... Even before I start peddling I am wet from perspiration... Anyhow we found a place to stay...

NOTHING like the previous night but quite OK and within budget.

Rooms are big, includes air con and a shower...Catchya Later

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