Doolittle Fallacy

Suffice to say I didn't die.

I accelerated downwards for perhaps five feet before my heels hit ledge. Jarred forward by the impact my flailing hand clutched handful of thorns which finally brought me to a halt.

A shaky, undignified, but thankful stop.

Legs straight and rigid, both arms locked behind me from the shoulder, torso leaning forward at 45 looking straight down. I must've looked like nothing so much as a very out of place and inept ski jumper.

Tentatively I stepped back from the brink. Now feeling 100% keen to be down I carefully descended the blessedly flattening lower portion and hit the bottom.

Thank fuck, I thought eloquently.

I was shaken. Failing to follow the path to its conclusion called into question some of the qualities with which I had begun to identity: Adventurousness, stoicism, stubbornness. The confidence in my willingness to carry on regardless was suddenly in doubt. If I can't even reach a sodding waterfall... At least I could say with certainty that I didn't have a death wish. Having set out on this trip depressed that I suppose was no minor thing.

Retracing my steps looking around for turn off's missed, my certainty that this hadn't been the way evaporated. The path underfoot was undeniably there if over grown and tough going.

The phrase 'kids and oldies may find it tough' swirled. May???? Maybe I had just wimped out.

I got back the rainforest level and trudged back eyes cast down.

A beautiful Blue Necked Keelback appeared right in front of me. Delicate coils of luminous orange. The Keelback was calm, no flattening of its neck to threaten a strike with its small venomous mouth. Instead it paused and then gracefully waved its way to a sunny leaf strewn spot to bask.

I watched enraptured as he relaxed and, just like that, I felt much better.

Battle of the Bulge

Departure #2 was from a lovely spot called Hutan Lipur Sungai Sendat, a waterfall, just north of KL. Peter, keen to test out his new hammock, joined me. Arriving in the early hours of the afternoon we found it closed...

Fortunately Peter and I are on the same wave:

The best sort of travel always involves a degree of trespass. The risk is both the challenge and the invitation. ~ Paul Theroux

So we ducked under the police tape and were rewarded with a blissful place to camp for the evening.

False starts and faulty parts

Having arrived in Melbourne I then flew directly to Malaysia.


Wait that's not right.

There was a glorious intervening year spent cycling in Australia and New Zealand and staying with my sister and her family in Sydney.

Have no fear hardy handful of readers. The pictures of that leg are uploaded and copious notes have been prepared. A poorly spelt overly loquacious account of those antipodean adventures will be enumerated here.

A sneaky peak of Tas, Nz and Gippsland

Just not right now. My sluggardly blogging output has left me so far behind that the entries risked becoming more memoir than travelogue.

So with a waft of my cyberJedi wrist while murmuring 'those were not the posts you were looking for' I invite you to join me as we touch down in steamy Kuala Lumpur at the tail end of the rainy season.

Bicycle Sounds

I was recently contacted by Fil Corbitt. A talented podcaster from Reno.

Showing uncharacteristic poor judgment he wanted to do an interview with me.

Here it is:
Naturally I apologise to Fil and you for my relentless erring and umming, an odd pronunciation of Pasargadae, and even odder plummy accent. I put the later down to a spontaneous post-colonial reaction to talking with an American.

Musandam and bust

I was pleased to be waved through the border crossing at Dibba.

I was pleased not to have to pay for a new Omani visa.

I was less pleased to now be an undocumented foreign national. 

To complicate matters further non-GCC nationals (me) aren't allowed to pass between border crossings here. Travelling from say Dibba, north to Khassab and then on to re-enter the UAE at Ash Sham was prohibited. 

A shame indeed, as that was exactly my intention. I'd read about dolphins cavorting in the fjords around Khassab and I meant to see them.

Bureaucracy be damned.

So I scooted out of Dibba to make camp.

An obliging acacia grove provided a discrete and comfortable spot.