Last night we went out to dinner, feeling sorry for ourselves as the day was not a good one, not only did we lose 4 frustrating hours at the border, we also discovered when we arrived a the bank to change money that we lost another hour due to the time difference between Thailand and Malaysia, so the bank had just closed and we were too late.
We were briefly happy when we found our hotel as the price was very reasonable and the hotel looked very nice from outside, but once we found our broom closets the happiness ended, (but we could at least walk in into the passage to find enough space to change our minds.) It was just bigger than the double bed in my room and luckily I has already learnt to shower on the toilet while looking at myself in the mirror.
We found this restaurant, look at their logo, and they were not lying. They had everything you can think of. Look at these photos :
But sadly we did not eat there as I had seen this large potatoe-bass waiting to be ordered, how sad :
As we dive with these gentle fish and I have spent many a dive with them, I had already calculated the cost for the fish, it would have cost me to buy it (R9000-00) and I was calculating the distance from the restaurant to the ocean as I was planning to buy the fish and release it, but I did not want to cause a scene, so we ate here at the local food market where there were no fish staring at us :
This morning was not a good start to my day, still not sure what happened, ( I am blaming the hour difference and that my phone did not automatically picked up the hour difference,) but as a result I overslept, (we decided that we wanted to beat the morning traffic and get off the island by leaving at 6h00 and that way we will also beat the morning rush-hour traffic when we arrive at KL at about 10h00.) So when Rocky came and knocked on my door at 6h00 I knew I was in for an expensive evening (If you are not ready to ride at the time agreed you have to buy a few rounds of drinks that evening, and when you have to pay for their drinks no one drinks beer, oh no, all of a sudden their drink of choice has become a cocktail or 12 year old Scotch.)
It took me 7 minutes to get down, load my bags into the panniers and put on my riding gear, but then my GPS was missing and then there was a disagreement about exactly where the shipping agents office is and eventually we left at 6h20. It was a cool 28,4 degrees and there was not a single car on the roads, it was dark as the sun was still an hour away from showing itself. We did a 200km stretch and then stopped for fuel, (some went to eat Noodles and an egg and condensed-milk coffee while others went to brush their teeth, splash water on their faces.)
Malaysia is very impressive, they are booming and there are signs of their growing economy everywhere, the infrastructure is excellent and everywhere you look when passing the towns one can see the construction of houses and flats taking place, and nothing is done at half-measure, their pride of their workmanship can be seen in everything, even the pavements impressed me, one can see that it was not just laying-down of some square paving blocks, it is a work of art with intricate patterns and the use of different textures and colours, almost like a work of art that is going to provide a place for people to run, walk and cycle for many years to come.
Thanks to my GPS and Peens’s GPS not exchanging notes the group got split into two and the group that missed the off-ramp could not back-track, so the two groups set off in different directions in search of shipping agents. Rocky, Hennie and I found an industrial building with shops and car-wash and “restaurants” on the ground floor and different shipping agents above the shops.
The other group arrived at a pre-arranged shipper for a properly set-up meeting. Not every shipper or agent have experience with shipping vehicles and we have to make sure that we choose the correct capable person 1st time as any unforeseen mistakes will cost us later. So eventually 4 different shippers were briefed and asked to quote. We all met at my new office in the local eating house between the car wash and the local motor-tune-up-add-turbo-centre. We all reported back on the questions each guy’s shipper asked and what they anticipated as being problems. And guess what, our Medical Insurance Turned Accident Insurance came back to bite us !!!
The reason is that our medical insurance expires the day we arrive back in JHB, so instead of our vehicle permits that were issued at the border yesterday expiring in 30 days (if we went the normal route,) these permits now expire on the date our medical insurance expires, and the shippers all agree that we will have to get new insurance and have new permits issued. But the only way around this is to get a shipper that has a container ready for us immediately so that we can load the bikes before the permits expire. So there is still a lot of things we will have to do before we can head off to explore the Eastern Coast and then ride back on Friday into a container, catch a flight to Singapore and connect to RSA, no problem……….??? Time will tell.
Here is a photo of my new office and the meeting that took place around my conference table.
So while all the work was done from my office and the communication hub was burning-up the cell network we had the bikes and Land Cruiser washed by this team who were very proud of their work.