While most of my Chinese friends and family spend the one week Chinese New Year break celebrating Chinese New Year, I made my yearly pilgrimage to the Land Below the Wind, Sabah. My only justification for doing so is that Sabah is tooo damn beautiful to not visit whenever I have a chance.
5 other friends joined me on my pilgrimage. So, introducing the "pilgrims":
And of course
My trip went something like that:
|One star Brigadier General Lim|
I flew from Kuala Lumpur to Semporna, diving & snorkeling at the islands in the Celebes Seas. Namely, Mabul Island, Mataking Island & Sibuan Island. And believe me when I say it was BEAUTIFUL! It was so beautiful that is has become a curse to me. Since I have now looked upon that which is paradise, I now have to live my life in eternal craving to return to these islands. I wake up everyday with a hole in my heart when I realize I am not there. Yes, it is that beautiful there :P
|Sitting normally patiently waiting for the boat |
|A teaser how the beautiful it is under the sea|
|FMDH at Mataking|
|Group shot in the sea|
More photos can be seen in my Facebook page after one or two days. I have to say that the photos do not do justice to the beauty of the islands, you'll just have to take my word that it is THIS! beautiful.
After we were fully saturated with the insurmountable beauty of the ocean, we took a flight to Kota Kinabalu for our next agenda: Conquer Mount Kota Kinabalu... again. Mount Kinabalu standing proud at 4095m is the 5th highest mountain in South East Asia.
|And on land|
My friends and me trained hard to achieve a certain level of fitness so that this climb would be a breeze for us. But Mount KK proved too tough for us.
|Mount Kinabalu from the distance|
|Exhausted after only just 0.5KM|
I'm joking of course hehe. I can proudly say that we, the pride of the Malaysian Army conquered Mount KK without much difficulty. Our climb took 2 days. The first day we climbed to Laban Rata, a guest house at the height of 3272.7m. Here we rested for the night then continued with the ascend to the peak at 2am in morning. Perhaps something worth mentioning was the temperature during our ascend to the peak.
The temperature during our climb to Laban Rata (The guest house where we spent the night) was perfect:
Bright and sunny,
like a funny bunny
drinking some honey.
|Cotton Candy clouds|
|En route to Laban Rata|
|One of the few complete group picture we managed to take|
|The joy upon arriving at Laban Rata|
But during the ascend to the peak at 2am the next day, a wicked bone freezing wind came upon us. We were buffeted by the bitter cold wind every step of the way to the peak. When we arrived at the peak, we were practically frozen solid.
|It was so cold that even the water iced up|
We later found out that the temperature during our ascend was around -5ºC. Even though the distance to the peak was only 2.7km, the cold and the thin air made the ascend to the peak the most challenging part of the whole climb. But the scenery from the peak was worth every moment we were freezing.
|Sun rise from the peak|
|The peak at long last|
|The surreal scenery |
Well, after spending about an hour at the peak, we descended Mount KK with a heavy heart, reluctant to leave the peak we worked so hard to conquer. I don't know what went through my friend's mind when they were standing on top of the world savoring the magnificent view but at that moment, I silently swore to my self that I am going to travel the world and conquer more mountains. And to have the means to do so, I am going have to work hard and excel in all I do. In other words, I left Mount Kinabalu inspired and truly motivated to study hard and train hard!
|Yours truly, Lim Shimri|