An open-ended adventure by Fifi flipflop
Currently traveling
  • Day2479

    Langkawi inbound

    September 11 in Malaysia ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    I wake this morning and am still undecided about my flight to Langkawi. I've made enquiries about hiring a mobility scooter but with no joy. After a few hours of umming and ahing I make a decision that I'm going to go. I mean how hard can it be to board a plane with a broken ankle? Bloody hard . I get dropped at the airport and to be fair the taxi driver gets me a trolley and I use it to hop into the terminal but it proves a little more difficult than I imagined. Hopping in 1 flip-flop while holding the brake off on a slippery floor is not a good combination. I make my way back to the entrance and attract the attention of one of the security guards. Within minutes a wheelchair is on the scene and they drop me at the Air Asia counter where I moved to a different wheel chair. They check me in and put me in the queue and advise they will take me to the gate an hour before take off. I cruise through security apart from my scissors in my wash bag and I'm boarded on the plane with the captain who is nice enough to have a little chat with me. The flight is only 1 hour but when we arrive in Langkawi I'm asked to stay on the plane until everyone has left and get the special treatment of being taken down in the lift. There is the smallest wheelchair in there and I wonder how anyone bigger than me would fit in it. Once grounded I am put in another wheelchair and wheeled straight through to the exit door. Nanda and Rick are waiting for me and in 10 minutes I'm home. A few people I know stay at Nanda's on a long term basis so when I arrive there is a little welcome party and after dropping my bags we head to rainbow bar. I have a few beers with the local crowd who are very shocked to see me, before getting a grab back to my room.Read more

  • Day2478

    Realisation

    September 10 in Malaysia ⋅ ☁️ 26 °C

    I wake today very tearful. The frustration and reality of how hindered I am with this broken ankle has really hit home, and even though the pain has eased a little my arms feel like I've been punching all night. I'm still unsure about my plans as I'm due to fly to Langkawi tomorrow and I can barely get round the apartment at this rate. I have a day of total relaxation today after dosing myself with tablets and James goes out to see if he can find me a suitable rucksack as its not viable to carry my huge rucksack on my back on crutches. He calls to say the cheapest one is £70 and that he can lend me his one instead. Nico has messaged me today and we arrange to meet in a place just round the corner from here called Souled out. After waiting forever for a cab one of the ladies from the coffee shop offers to drop us off. It's so good to meet Nico again. We enjoy dinner and a few cocktails and the whole time we're here I think every table in the house must have a birthday because we spend most of the evening singing along and just before we are about to leave all the staff start dancing. Apparently they are paid more money because they have practice sessions. Even just the effort to come here has exhausted me and I tell the guys I'll just head back but they won't hear of it so we all head back to Quad and finish the evening with karaoke again.Read more

  • Day2477

    Absolutely plastered

    September 9 in Malaysia ⋅ 🌧 28 °C

    I wake today to the sad news the queen has passed away. Having served her in the military I feel an outstanding amount of sadness that she has passed. With being in Malaysia it's not as apparent as in the UK as having spoken to numerous people that said it's the only thing on the telly compared to here where I have no television. In the morning I get to meet Shakira a lady that works for James but with still not feeling well I head back to bed for an hour and let them crack on with the work. I actually sleep for 3 hours and after I wake up and grab a bite to eat and a shower it's pretty much time to go and get my leg put in plaster. When I arrive I'm seen straight away and the doctor advises that I've actually broken it in 2 places and I have the option of surgery or to try with plaster first. I'm psychologically not prepared for surgery and opt for the plaster. He places me in a half cast and James comes to pick me up. I'm really struggling with the crutches , honestly I consider myself really strong but I already have blisters on my hands and my underarms are extremely tender. In the evening James has a few friends coming over and to be honest I am glad of the distraction. Vivi has brought moon cake as today is the Chinese celebration of the Mid Autumn festival otherwise known as the moon festival. It is as important in the Chinese calendar as Chinese New year and it when the moon is at its fullest and brightest point in the year. In Chinese style we enjoy the evening singing karaoke. I stay up till just after 1am but am exhausted and somehow fall asleep with the singing continuing until the early hours.Read more

  • Day2476

    Breaking bad

    September 8 in Malaysia ⋅ ☁️ 29 °C

    I've decided this morning that I'm going to get my foot looked at. It was really swollen again last night. James drops me off on the bike and comes in with me initially but he has a lesson later and it's obvious I'll be here for some time. I get taken to x-ray and have multiple x-ray taken before going back to the doctor who tells me I've broken my fibular bone and need to be put in plaster for the next 6 weeks. She asks me how I've coped with the pain and I tell her I haven't really used anything but ibuprofen, she writes me the referral and prescribes some strong painkillers and tells me I need to get crutches from the chemist and come back in the morning to get put in plaster. I ask her about flying and she advises that I shouldn't fly long haul as due to the situation there's a much heightened chance of dvt. I collect my prescription and crutches. Shortly after I get back to Quad my friend Lucky arrives. It's so good to to see her. We spend a few hours catching up before she has to leave. In the evening we get a cab down to the little square. I get to meet John the guy who owns the gyoza shop and eat here while sharing a few beers. Upstairs is a bar with pool table so after shutting up we go up for a few games of pool. It seems like forever since I played and apart from hobbling around the table I play pretty well. I literally fall into bed when I get back I'm exhausted.Read more

  • Day2475

    Farewell Indonesia

    September 7 in Malaysia ⋅ ☁️ 25 °C

    I wake this morning and prepare my little farewell presents and photos. I don't see today as a sad day as I'm pretty sure I will be back in November. I say my goodbyes and Wawan Barra and Abang walk me down the 270 steps. I have to say it's a lot easier than I'd envisaged. it's nice to be down by the river. As I arrive to the taxi Abang gives me a small present. I can't believe I've been here for nearly 3 week and it's crazy how at home I am here. Even buma the dog comes down to send me off. I bid farewell to Wawan at the steps but continue to the taxi with the other boys. As we drive away I really appreciate the jungle. The drive for the first couple of hours is quite rough but as we enter a more civilized area there's guys to cross us across the busy junctions. We arrive to the airport in good time and after grabbing a trolley I make my way to the back of the check in line. I don't know what it is with me and lines but before I know it the guy in front of me is checking in the whole family with 15 passports. It takes nearly an hour. I have time for a quick coffee and cigarette before boarding the plane to leave. I'm slightly gutted by how little I've seen of Indonesia although I have done quite a bit here like Komodo Island, Labuan bajo, Amed and Sumatra but I haven't really scraped the surface so I guess I'll have to put Indonesia back on the list. I book a grab and it's over an hour to Jays house and by the time I arrive I'm exhausted. We have a quick catch up and order food. While we're waiting I have my first hot shower for weeks and it's amazing it's the little things that we all take for granted that makes me happiest. After dinner and numerous cups of Yorkshire tea I go to bed a happy lady.Read more

  • Day2474

    The last day.

    September 6 in Indonesia ⋅ ☁️ 31 °C

    Once again I wake with a heavy heart knowing this is my last full day. The place is busy and I sit on the veranda just enjoying the peace. The ability to integrate with local people and still be me is something that I've deeply appreciated on the trip and Ive found it without the football connection as football is nowhere near as much as a big thing out here in Indonesia. Wawan calls me and as I go down one of the lads is up the tree knocking advocado out with a stick, the way they climb and trek blows me away. We have jungle acrobatics this afternoon with the funky monkey throwing themselves about in the trees as if they have no care of life. I could literally sit for hours and watch they're antics, actually that's literally what I have been doing this last few weeks. I also have a little practice of getting up and down the stairs to the half way point and it's nice to actually see the river that I've heard so much about and only ever crossed in the dark on the night I arrived. There is a storm coming in and as I look across the hills I see the dark clouds follow the same shape as them. Shortly after the electricity goes off and tonight stays off for some time but just like the old days everyone has dinner by candlelight. I've been asked to join everybody for dinner and I enjoy delicious tuna and rice. In the evening we're joined by nanang and dolar and enjoy a little sing song before I head for bed.Read more

  • Day2473

    Footloose

    September 5 in Indonesia ⋅ ☁️ 28 °C

    I have a plan today to do a couple of the stairways here to get some exercise in preparation for the colossal decent I will be doing the day after tomorrow. When I arrive to the restaurant Barra tells me I need to move rooms from the bamboo to a family room. I enjoy my morning coffee and pack up in 5 minutes and actually enjoy the fact I have a different view it's like being in a country garden, I can hear the river and the birdsong is beautiful. Dewi messages me to say she has something for me and when I get to the restaurant she's bought me the prettiest pair of earrings made out of coconut. The new t shirts are ready and I've bought one my memories here have been incredible the people amazing and the food delicious and is a souvenir I will treasure and hopefully wear on my next jungle trek here. In the evening I grab a shower and don my t-shirt for the group photo. I even manage to put a bit of make up on as well. In the evening I watch the boys play takraw from my balcony. As I'm sat here Johnno the friendly funky monkey runs across my roof gets to the edge and looks down then jumps to the tree opposite and eyes my bag. I grab it before he can. In the evening once again we have intermediate power loss again and it's not due to a storm the local government do it to annoy the residents. When I reach the restaurant every one is wearing them and it looks really cool. We take some group photos and I enjoy my evening watching football highlights and eating the biscuits that Barra brought me from the village. Everyone loves it as it's not something they would often have.Read more

  • Day2472

    How it all started

    September 4 in Indonesia ⋅ ☁️ 26 °C

    I once again fall back to sleep this morning and eventually rise before 10. It's a nice day today and I enjoy a catch up with Wawan in the morning. The whole sanctuary here was set up In 1973, Regina Frey and Monica Boerner, two Swiss zoologists, established an orangutan rehabilitation centre at Bukit Lawang. This they called the Bohorok Orangutan Centre after the nearby town of Bohorok. Although illegal, orangutans were widely held as pets in Indonesia, and the centre sought to reintroduce them to the wild. It was supported by the WWF (World Wildlife Fund). The centre has since been closed and thankfully the Orangutan let back into the wild. And Regina is an owner of Ecolodge, another accommodation lodge here. The difference with On The Rocks is it's high up but the views and nature here are incredible. Abang isn't feeling good today so they have sent for the medicine man who gives him a massage. While he's here I decide to get another massage on my foot and Wawan gets his shoulder sorted 3 birds with 1 stone. We all feel much better Afterwards but at the time mine was painful to a point where I could feel myself close to fainting, but he really knows where the pain is and as they say no pain no gain. A little later I notice I've been bitten by something all along my arm. I use my pawpaw and don't really notice it anymore. @pawpaw if you want an ambassador for your product I'm the one. One again I get given pudding in the afternoon. This time it's bubur sum sum very similar to creme caramel but with rice as the base it's delicious. Today I've also seen a snake and a bat from the restaurant it's really a different thing every day the longer I stay the more I think I could live somewhere like this, so close to nature. I also learn that bats can walk and all cockroaches can fly, quite a scary thought. Barra comes back from the village and gives me a new lighter which is a Liverpool one it's so I don't lose it. As we settle in to watch the game, a grasshopper jumps onto the television and at some moments looks like a person on the pitch out of the corner of my eye. I watch the football till about midnight but retreat to bed exhausted.Read more

  • Day2471

    Another day in paradise

    September 3 in Indonesia ⋅ 🌧 28 °C

    In the morning I stay in bed a bit longer and listen to the jungle with my doors open. The sounds outside are incredible and I sit and listen before drifting off to sleep for another hour. This morning I'm invited down to the lodge and sit with Wawan and Abang. Shortly after 2 guys arrive with medicine for boomer. He's got an allergy to some thing and has been scratching for a few days now. Boomer knows there's something going on and starts to get a little bit agitated. Wawan goes to the kitchen and comes back with sardines and after a couple of sniffs scoffs the lot down tablets included. 2 new guests arrive from England and I accompany them down to the rock room which is the furthest I've ventured since hurting my foot but gives me the clearest view of the mum and baby yet. I don't take any photos I just watch I'm amazed by how small the baby still is although you can see she's definitely confident of swinging on her own. In the late afternoon the village starts coming to life with live music playing and it's definitely Saturday. Down there a noise is coming like wacky races and there are cars revving up and the noise echos right the way through the valley. Wawan has arranged for a photographer to take some updated photos of the site so I accompany Wawan the photographer to my room where he asks is it alright The plan was to go to the village tonight but as much as I wish I could I don't realistically think the steps are viable. I cut my losses and stay and watch the football instead but even that is dissapointing.a draw is not the result I was hoping for. I watch the other games before heading to bed to listen to the party going on in the villageRead more

  • Day2470

    Brick wall

    September 2 in Indonesia ⋅ 🌧 25 °C

    Today I feel like I've hit a brick wall. I'm so restricted with where I can go and I hate having to rely on people to do things for me. My little mate Esbi is waiting eagerly with the dominos but 10 minutes in he's bored and wanders off. Dion is heading to the village so I order a few things like deodorant and cigarettes and hand him all my loose change which over here is 1000 and 2000 notes. I'm learning a lot of Indonesian but when I'm trying to hear people speak it's so difficult because some people speak with a very dramatic accent while others are very softly spoken and the way I hear the same thing said by two different people they could be saying something totally different. In the afternoon a couple come up from the village for lunch. I point out a few of the key areas to watch out for things and out of the corner of my eye catch sight of the 2 hornbill. They manage to get the best photos yet and pass them onto me. It's the most clear siting we've had and is beautiful because I can just watch this beautiful bird while someone else takes the photos. In the evening I'm brought a portion of cake it's like a rice pudding base with a blachmange top. I've also upped my skills of mosquito squatting and am pretty much professional. Later in the evening I'm told it was Esmis birthday. The difference for me is incredible. The money and fuss we make is ridiculous our kids are spoilt way too much at home and don't even realise it. I go to bed with a heavy heart that we haven't even sang happy birthday to Esbi but I'm sure he's none the wiser.Read more