Beach holiday…?

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The Tioman dive centre

Before I delve into the ongoings of week 4 I feel it’s appropriate to summarise the first half of Expedition 7…a beach holiday. Luckily I won’t get the wagging finger from Katie for saying that as she’s just left the BV ‘camp’, headed for Thailand in order to educate hundreds of academics on the increasing biodiversity of Tioman Marine Park. I lie, it hasn’t been a beach holiday what with all the learning, testing and practising, but week 4 saw the beginning of the ‘real’ surveys.

The research and surveying is the main reason why we’re here, to add to the ever growing database about the waters surrounding Pulau Tioman. Not only is it nice to utilise the mass of knowledge we’ve accummulated during the past few weeks but it’s gratifying to know that our prescence and work here is helping to conserve the beautiful surroundings.

This week oozed productivity with the ‘Waste Management Campaign’ really stepping up a gear.  By the end of the week we were close to completing a proposal to be sent out to local businesses, authorities and influential people on the island.  But work hard, play hard. Cue the ashes. Mere metres from the Tioman Dive Centre pavilion and bounded by the warm waters of the South China Sea is the Blue Ventures beach cricket arena. Step forward the English chaps, assemble team of international (one aussy hence Ashes) misfits. This was a game though not to be remembered for it’s classy cricket rather a humerous mis-hap from a certain batsman, me. In my peak cricketing days (under 13 prep school) I would dispatch full-tosses with an elegant and poised hook through leg side, delighting in the sight of the ball racing over the ropes. What I, and certainly Paul (our leisure diver physcologist friend from KL), did not expect was the bat flying out of my grip gyrating directly towards his head. Smack. Ouch. The damage, a knick square between the eyes, what a relief! Needless to say I walked.

Other notable going ons during the week.  A fantastic BBQ down at the staff’s house, accompanied by Katie’s dad.   Kick off to World Cup 2010 in SA!

Finally, quote of the week comes from Sandra.  Her response to the question, ‘does anyone know what the natural wonders of the world are?’  …..”the great wall of China”! Hmmmmmm.