Leaving our island home of three weeks was a difficult yet necessary thing to do. We had seen old friends, new friends and even met some people for the first time whom we just simply enjoyed the company of. Travel and climbing introduce you to some of the worlds really “good humans”. We were headed off on our next adventure! Indeed a climbing adventure however a far more intense climb involving the largest mountain in Borneo, Malaysia………..Mount Kinabalu.
It had been a long day. A long-tail to Krabi and fly Krabi to Bangkok and meet the French contingent staying at Freddo’s (a darling friend of Karine’s) house. We had a late lunch together followed by a late night out at the Tree House Restaurant.
The next day a flight to Kuala Lumpur, a three hour lay over and then a two hour flight to Kota Kinabalu (KK). We have just arrived in KK and checked into our hotel for the evening. Karine and I were wrecked and all we wanted was food and a beer to take the edge off the day. So we did this without any reservation what so ever. Our hosts, Dreamtel Hotels were perfect.
After a good nights sleep we had breakfast and packed up what little luggage we had with us. We were travelling light as we didn’t need to carry any of the climbing gear required for our usual escapades in the vertical. The climb was booked through Amazing Borneo Tours and they were doing it all for us with the exception of climbing the mountain for us. We jumped into the mini bus and we were off to The Pines Resort in Kundasang, Ranau, about ten minutes from the Kinabalu World Heritage Park.
Once settled we went for a wander around the village markets and took some shots of the locals just simply doing what they do on a day to day basis. Farmers tending to their crops, local woman running market stalls and tending to their children, young men playing takraw (this game is like volleyball, however you can only use your feet and your head……no hands at all) and the delivery of hundreds of kilos of cabbage. We found out on the way up to Kundasang that this region is famous for its cabbage. So much so they have a large dilapidated cabbage monument in the town square.
The area we were in was mainly christian and as we were travelling to Kundasang I noticed there was a church about every three kilometres. I was now more informed, having found out that the area we are is majority christian. Irrespective it made no difference the people of the area were extremely inviting and although communication was a little difficult, we were offered free samples of local fruit and sweets.
It was wonderful to feel so welcome in this little village that is surrounded by mountains.