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Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Discussion Between Animals

Digg!
I had been to Kangar for many times, detailed exploration to its perimeter is still yet to begin. In the mind of everybody who I know is either unknown or worthless to visit to this small place. I did not have the right to disregard the beauty of mother nature, I was here just for the intention of lifting up her face mask.

In fact on the way I was driving from Butterworth to Kangar, I noticed that harvest season is right over. The remaining of paddy stalks were left rooted on the cracked piece of land waiting for hot sun to dry them up. Some of them had already been burnt as a way to be recycled as fertiliser. The feeling on what I had seen was somehow different, I was expecting something wonderful.

And then I spent sometimes strolling around. The story begins.

On one of the wide stretched paddy fields I spotted a cow. Yes, a cow should not really stimulate me so much, but with the tall stony mountain at the back and a tiny cow in the middle of a flat piece of paddy field, it should be a great view to reflect the loneliness of the cow and the impact of my picture must be sensible.

I clicked, I zoomed in and out. On my view finder, then I discovered there was a white image beside the cow. I thought it was just an ordinary white piece of plastic water pipe initially. Yet it moved. It was fun and interesting to see a bird out there.

These two animals seemed to have some discussions. The bird kept waving its head while it was talking, the cow listened carefully. I observed for a couple of minutes, bird chaired the discussion and did most of the talking.

The cow might get some points and started thinking. Pondering upon the issues with the head being supported by the dried muddy land, as what we do when we place our chin on our hand. The problem might be very serious. The birdie began to walk back and forth. Its silent friend did not seem to offer any help, it was too hungry in the midst of a lengthy meeting, it started eating.

The discussion continued for more than ten minutes. There was still no conclusion made. This was the most difficult part of a meeting when everybody just keeps mum, pretends knowing nothing and throws the ball back to the chairman for the decision.

The ball was now on the hand of the birdie. I could not help. It might get frightened and flew away if I went near. Then the problem would be dragged further without a solution. Situation always turn complicated when third party who thinks he know the most get involved.

I decided to leave them alone and continued MyJourney.

When I looked back, poor birdie was still walking back and forth....

Friday, January 30, 2009

Kangar, a small town in north Peninsular Malaysia

I am back to my "office" now after having charged up during the two days stay at Kangar.

I woke up at 6am these two mornings for the jogging as well as wandering sessions, I had to "restore" the usual me by now. I had been sleeping or waking up late this few days, and it is a norm for everyone of us to keep eating and eating during Chinese New Year.

It was an hour of hard work this morning, yet the breezy morning that changed from the initially dark, dim and finally to bright was really enjoyable. There was a mountain beside me and with paddy fields spread in between.


I did not manage to locate a good angle to snap the big-orange sun, anyhow it was good to have it to kick off the day. The popping up morning sun is always soft and gentle, and somehow I had my own theory that man should have discovered the sun is in a round shape only when they woke up early in the morning.

(Early birds have worms for their breakfast, and, for a man, he get to discover a new theory).

I was gifted with a good mountain view when Mother Nature had the morning sunshines pouring on it. I just needed to perform a simple click to have “the mountain in flame” been shared with you.


I returned the next morning for the original view of the mountain. It was very much simpler compared to the tempting look in yesterday, but both are beautiful.

This marks the start of my stories I had in Kangar which I have promised earlier. In fact, I acquired some new experiences that I was not able to have at my Cerok Tokun.
I shall share these later.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

make-up of trees

I must agree that trees behave like human. They have their own thinking and like.

I have another discovery to prove my point when I browsed through my hard disk, the man- made accessory which let human brain to have excuse to forget something.

You see, this is the benefit and fun to go jungle trekking.

Trees needed decoration as well to make them beautiful. Before went to party in the windy evening, they somehow got themselves dress up. Though to us the gowns were not as colourful as what the celebrities were having, but to the world of trees, the gowns were surely similar to that belonged to Cinderella.


The only difference is after the clock had struck twelve, the gowns would never disappear.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Only tradition on these few days

I had not and I am not going to have any trekking activities these few busy days. We had new year eve dinner with my parents at my brother's place yesterday. This, actually a re-union dinner, is a grand dinner for us, during which everybody comes back from where they are.

This is what we call Family.

I shall bring my kids to visit our relatives from house to house on today, the first day of the new year. This is part of our new year culture. Red packets with some money inside will be given to the kids symbolise older by one year, grow wiser, more discipline and healthier for the coming year.

Me and my wife insist to go through all these together with the kids. This is the only way to pass on our tradition to the next and next generation. Culture and tradition shall not be challenged against scientific arguments. They are belonged to the inner part that guide us along our journey so as we will still know who we are while facing waves of modernization.

I will travel 140km to north for Kangar, the capital city of Perlis State on the second day. Kangar is my wife's hometown where her parents are staying right now.

My trekking will be resumed then. More interesting stories will be shared later, I promised.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Wishing Everybody a Happy and Prosperous Year of Ox

Tomorrow is the New Year Eve. I have been thinking of how to greet my fellow blog mates for quite a number of days.

Everybody is busy at cleaning up the whole house, hopefully to clear away all unwanted items and to welcome the new luck. By then, decoration will be put up.

My plants are also adorned with red and golden ornaments. How can I leave them alone on this festival? And I decided to greet everybody through the silent whisper of these little plants.






May the New Year bring happiness and Success to everybody.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Persistence

I do not have the opportunity to witness any trees or flowers in snowy winter. It should be, besides a lot of fun, a great experience to stand beside and praise them for their persistence to live proudly and strongly. And they will jokingly shake off the snow from their body to my face. There are always happiness if we would like to explore, only if we make friend with trees.

Though I am naive about winter, I know that trees at 4095m above sea level where temperature is about 8 degree C are my good friends. They are as brave as their friends in freezing winter.

When I was struggling my way up to the peak, they cheered me up. They set the example to me. If they could make it, why couldn't me? They might be small, but they were mighty. They did not live luxuriously, they did not eat or drink much.

I learnt mumbling from them. They did not sing loudly over a cold wind. I had to stop and listen carefully. They were so humble as such hikers might not have aware of them.

The rope which you see in the picture was to ensure we did not skid on the slippery rocky mountain, off course, the rule was we must not think we were as good as the trees without the help of rope. Man is not always the greatest.

If you hide the small trees with your hand, the whole picture turns gloomy immediately. I mean, our world becomes colourful just because of their existence.

To further enhance the colour, the blossoms smiled to me so brightly in the morning light. It was 7:00 am by then. They woke up early to welcome friends from all over the world, to provide as much oxygen as possible to us who needed to stop after every few steps for the next breath.

Trees are kind.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Harmony

I was disturbed emotionally this early morning, though I knew once I reached factory and started working, the feeling must have gone.

I happened to know that a new friend who I did not know, and might not going to know, visited my website. He was from Gaza, Palestinian Territory. (Thanks to Statcounter for this free service).

He might have stayed for seconds, he might have browsed through a few of my posts, at the end, this visit did create ripples in my heart.

I always mumble in the web, some of you have overheard and responded to me. I always mumble about the things I saw and the emotion that I felt on the place of my living. It is for sure will be felt very much differently at another corner of the world.

What I want to tell is that I am writing something which may somehow be a nonsense to someone who are suffering now; on the other hand, it may serve as a funny stuff that make him smile or laugh out loud. I rather prefer to believe in the later, and I always hope so.

The picture that I attached today displayed a harmonious place different trees live at. Be it Mr. Tree A, Mr. Tree B or Mr. Tree C, they have different names, they grow in different shapes and different colours, there is minority as well as majority in population, but they live harmoniously, and continuously to be century after century, under the same blue sky, in the only world we have.


I hope we can learn from the colony of trees.

And I want to share something I received today which was written by Regina Brett of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland, Ohio.

1. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.
2. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
3. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.

And lastly, I wish you a very good night....

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Appointment with trees

It is fun to see people presenting trees differently from our normal view.

I have tried once, the experience was not bad. I am by then addicted to this and always think of further exploration. Only trees with big trunks or many branches produce gorgeous looks, I have a bundle of such trees in my jungles, along my trekking trails. Yes, I mean my jungles, they are belonged to me. Of course, they are belonged to you as well, if you like.

I have learnt enough thus I got permission from the trees everytime before I leaned forward and captured their pictures.

The bottom portion of this tree was rotten in such a way it produced a unique natural carving on its body. I did not able to show it clearly as not to over-expose the top. The stretching branches looked so small, they seemed to be very far away from us. In fact, it was a tall tree.

Let me tell you, when I was taking that picture, surrounding trees were as happy as a kid, they came so close to say "Cheese". They were all in my picture. I think Alice should like to join as well. It was the same for the second picture. Mengkuang tree refused to go away although I persuaded and promised to snap a few of its later. I understood that Petai tree was its closed friend for years.

What I want to show here is the "embedded branches" on the trunk of Petai tree. It looks outstanding over a smooth and whitish skin.

The shooting had to be done in a fast mode, as along this Penang National Park, eyes after eyes seemed very funny to me, as I were so odd to them as well by having some very odd photographing positions.

The eyes were belonged to the trekkers, but who knew, the tree were also watching, laughing, sharing and spreading the jokes around which would last for another decades.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Shy......

I met a tree when I was on my way leaving Penang National Park. It should have well camouflaged itself earlier.

It is kind of so shy to met a stranger, but there is no way to hide this, it is so obvious. You should know what I mean, if you look at the picture. I have never encountered a tree that is so shy before.

I have met a tree with scary face, I have met a tree who tried to talk to me but finally found me run away on the spot and I met a tree voluntarily made itself as a signboard to ask people to slow down. They are so brave out in the jungle, and this must be the way to survive.

But contradictory, this tree is as shy as a small kid to the stage that its face, its whole body becomes so red.

I tried to do some research and I laughed all my way. This tree is so shy, it hides itself behind various names under different circumstances. It calls itself differently even in the same country:

Preferred Scientific Name: Melaleuca cajuputi Powell
English: swamp tea-tree
Australia: paperbark tea-tree cajuput tree
Indonesia: kayu putih
Malaysia: kayu putih, gelam, gelam tikus
Thailand: samet
Vietnam: chè dong, tran, chi cay, bach thien tâng

It is as funny in the world of trees as in that of human.

Friday, January 16, 2009

There is a reason behind

It is quite strange to find a "SLOW" sign up here on a tree. This enables my thinking.

Is it a silent protest from someone who are busy finding his next breath and frustrated in catching up with friends?

Or is this a friendly reminder by the nature to us that we have to seriously re-think of slowing down?

Every warning sign or reminder is always written in red in order to pull attention. But I observed everyone included myself is numb with the sign. Or say it bluntly, it is actually transparent to us. If a survey is to be done among the hikers, there should be a minority of them who are aware of the sign. It has never served its purpose. City folks have too much to focus on, although it seems like most of us are just busy for nothing, especially it is very naive only to conclude this during the year end reflection.

Then what does the slowing down sign mean for? There is nothing dangerous in front except it looks brighter and shiny. Everyone loves seeing bright sunlight and there should be no hesitation at all. The sunlight is always warm in a cool jungle with fresh air which is oxygen-rich.

What I want to say, this is one of the mountain bike descending trails actually.The warning sign does not mean for anything ahead of us. The danger is right beside us, if you are on a mountain bike. There is a sudden step with a height of about 2 feet immediately before the tree, which is intentionally not captured in the picture. The cyclists must have been warned far away in order to slow down. Nobody likes to experience stun of this kind. My picture is simply misleading. This really happens everyday, in our surrounding.

I have yet to witness any mountain biking on this trek. Hopefully I shall have the opportunity to tell you some stories on this.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Story on the trails, not on top of trees

Every time when I go for my jungle trekking, I always hope that I can encounter some animals other than monkeys. I do not have the intention to discriminate monkey. They are actually playful, and occasionally, they may snatch your foods likes what human use to do. The only reason is that monkey is too common at Cerok Tokun. So far I can see two types of monkey. If I find the third species or more, it is then I have the excitement to tell you.

My hope is yet to be realised. I am not looking for any excuses, but you must understand, all trees grow big leaves, be it big or small trees. Animals can easily hide themselves behind the dense leaves. I met once a woodpecker busy working on a tree, but it was the time that I did not have the habit to bring my camera along.

Every time I lift up my head, every time I look at the trees, it brings only disappointment at the end. If one day, I would like to think, all the trees are leafless, just like those on winter time, squirrels, hawks and any others will not escape from my sight. I am sure.

That is why I have changed my strategy. I explore something that stay low, on the trail. By then, you read no bird's story, no squirrel's story, but I have the story on ants in return.

The colony of ants spreads over a big area. They needed to travel, travel and travel, and continued busy at travelling everyday. There was nothing they were working on. I observed. They did not carry any food. They must be like us doing daily trekking and adventure. Do they update their blogs daily? What actually do they write in their blogs? Do they write funny human who on the other side write something about them?

But before they are able to go blogging, they must first survive from our footsteps. There is no warning sign or traffic light installed for this pedestrian crossing.

The size of giant ant in the next picture is measured at normally 25mm. It is not the type that goes in group. These ants are always seen wandering around in a couple or three. Cannot imagine if these ants appear in a big group, how gorgeous it should be.

I managed to find them only at my jungle trails. They dislike urban life.

Usually, ants bite people. These types do not. They do enjoy only trekking. They can find food at any time and in any places in the jungle because there is no winter over here. No preparation for winter is necessary. That's why they have the luxury to enjoy trekking or wandering around.

There is one type of big red ant that bite. We called them Weaver Ant. It is very painful by then. I shall tell you if I get the picture.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Mushroom, Cerok Tokun

Do you still remember my previous post on mushrooms? These fungus were small and pretty. Intentionally or not, they were showing off themselves directly on the trekking path. They were as easily destroyed by our footsteps as they were found.

I have a new discovery at Cerok Tokun this morning in which the mushrooms were encountered this time off the trekking trail, behind the bushes. They were quite funny as though of the same type, I presumed, the mushrooms performed in different shapes on stage.

Those on the top which had their home on wood are what I have normally seen. The bottom solo presented itself in a cup shape, had its baby mushroom inside and stood up on the wet soil.

Anyhow, both types shared the same habit and like. They copied and pasted the woody texture onto their body.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Reading and Jungle Trekking are alike

(I pondered. I has the feeling that this experience and jungle trekking, or even mountain trekking, are alike).

I spent some times reading posts today, one after another, from one blog which further link to other. I stayed with patience reading posts that were longer than I have ever read before, and most of the writers were those I first came across. I went in slowly for a good understanding on their thinking.

When I sat back, I pondered. I had the feeling that this experience and jungle trekking, or even mountain trekking, were alike.

For the past few years, I went from one trail to another whereby there were long and remote treks, and some are short and nearby. I did not know how the nature would be until I got my feet in. I learnt something new that encouraged me to travel further.


......I have the tendency to show up-going trekking trail in my posts. We climbed a small step and felt very proud when we were young. We tried our limit when we get stronger. Of course, people continues to try our limit and potential as well. Everyone calls this Challenge.


......The journey may be painful, and it may be fruitful. That's why I am still dreaming of
Mount Kinabalu after almost a year since I have climbed to the Low's Peak.

(The background is not the Low's Peak actually)

And my journey continues. Day after day. I continue to read and wander around. To catch up new knowledge, new experience and new friends.


(This is my thought today. From reading on posts which then pulled trekking together. Sort of wild crazy. Should be having too much reading).

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Blue water

This is one of the creeks heading towards Meromictic Lake. It is just an ordinary simple creek which hide itself among the trees.

What attracted me was the reflection of blue sky on it. It was unbelievable blue and took me a few seconds to re-confirm. The creek should have inclined in such a way to capture the sky beyond the trees.

The steepness to go through just kept people away. Otherwise, the blue sky might have been seen in your eyeball as well.

Monday, January 5, 2009

The Tree With Face

I have been keeping my pace too fast which, I believe, is the inherited problem from working life, especially when we are being managed under the microscope of productivity and efficiency. I am telling this because I missed out one or two things which I had reminded myself to countercheck during my return trip from Pantai Kerachut to Teluk Bahang. But ironically, I found other that I had not "put into my mind" although I should have seen it earlier. Sort of complicated...

I saw an awlful face greeting me silently though with a big mouth open up. The eyes and nose were messed up. It might be friendly, but I perceive the other way round by its appearence.

I met this tree on my way to the beach. I missed it on my returning trek. It might have taken a short break. I think.

If you happen to trek along this jungle trail, try to spot this tree with face and give it a hug. To ensure we will talk on the same tree, the signboard is the reference.

Enjoyment Matters; Pantai Kerachut

I spent three and a half hours on jungle trekking, another three hours on the beach. For my future trip, I would rather prefer to start the journey earlier for more time on the seaside. To simply sit down under a shade, watching at either natural view or people, though not adventurous at all, but this slow-down would certainly energize me for the next journey.

But my kid preferred to float himself on the water. By relaxing the muscle, straightening up the body, anybody can float. If stay further out to the sea, you can float more peacefully. Otherwise, though gentle but waves may still send you back to the shore.

And you see, up, up, up...... up to the rock was another way to have fun. The moment he smiled, waved his hands and showed the V-sign, this was what he called fun.

If you are deterred by the long trekking trail, I hope I am wrong, ferry service is available at Teluk Bahang Fishing Village. By then, you can heavily equipped yourselves with camp, fishing rods, beers etc as what you wish. Please remember to leave nothing behind except your footsteps.

I had my footsteps here.

But when I looked back,
they were washed away by the waves within seconds.

So will be yours.

Nobody had the privilege to demand for a Forever.

And, this wraps up my stories on Pantai Kerachut.






Saturday, January 3, 2009

Meromictic Lake, Kerachut Beach

Meromictic Lake, a field of mudflats. Pantai kerachut

I acquired some new experiences from Pantai Kerachut recently. A meromictic lake that results from natural phenomenon has layers of water which do not intermix.

It was low tides at the time I reached the beach, the lake looked like a field of mudflats with only some water flowing on low areas. Wonder why there were no birds flying around looking for foods. During spring tides, seawater enters through the opening which is on the left side of the picture to fill the lake slowly. At the time I made my move, although seawater started to enter the lake, it might be too early and I did not actually witness the phenomenon that fresh water at the top and sea water at the bottom.

The background forest was where we had walked through earlier.

Though we saw only mudflats at the meromictic lake, the stream that connected the lake and sea was clean enough that I could find little fish swimming. They were swimming beside the rocks under the wavy shadow of sunlight.

These fish are even more alert than the little crab. I had to hold my position for a few seconds, standing still in the water, waiting for them to come back before I managed to take their pictures.

There was once a discussion between two Chinese Philosophers in ancient time. "You ain't fish, how can you know the happiness of fish?" "You ain't me, how can you know that I do not know the happiness of fish?"

I did not know how happy the fish were, but I knew that the water is refreshing cool with my feet dipped inside.
Walked further, I saw a black creature stuck itself, inside the water, onto a piece of rock. And it moved slowly. Upon watching closely, it was a parasitic crab.

I did not know whether I had it in my camera because I was not able to preview under bright sunlight. I had to run to and fro the shed a few times, then that is what you are seeing now. For your eyes only.

I tried a few times, it should be its instinct to crawl downward instead of backward in order to runaway from my disturbance. Isn't that crab should walk sideway?

I know myself. I asked my family. And I concluded that we did enjoy ourselves at Pantai Kerachut.

You better stick to me. I shall bring you more fun at Pantai Kerachut when I return.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

2009 at the Esplanade, Penang

I'll stop for a while the Discovery of Penang National Park and Kerachut Beach.








There was a New Year Countdown at the Esplanade, Penang.


Thousands of people poured in from all corners to witness the Bye-bye to 2008 and Welcome, 2009.

At that moment the clock showed 12:00 midnight, the sky was painted with various colours of enjoyment and hope; wishing 2009 to be a better year, no war, no further economical downfall; wishing both our state and federal government will bring safety to our environment and wishing them to be wiser in solving people's problems.

The ceremony lasted for a short seven minutes. The groups of people started to disperse like flowing water.

And the night returned to its usual calmness. As peaceful as everyday, and peacefully forever.

Happy New Year 2009.