Island life changes you. Slowly and gradually Swiss cottages and the expedition becomes your normal life. The best signs of this was felt by all us volunteers yesterday when we got back from our four day trip to Juara, which is on the other side of the island.
We all wanted to come home. Come back to our rooms, beach, studies ( they are fun, I’m not only writing this because Katie wants me to) and diving. It was not that the trip wasn’t good. We went mountain trekking for 2 days, made a couple of survey dives and stayed at a relaxed, off-season surfers resort. The mountain trekking was an adventure in itself. We calculated that we had been walking in the jungle for a total of 20 hours, 11 in one day.
Another good sign of the change the expedition has had on us could be seen in the dive shop yesterday. We were preparing a barbaque for Matt, one of our instructors, who left us and went to Kuala Lumpur today. One of the things that needed to be prepared was a fish. Normally, anyone of us would have simply gutted it and cooked it. After a couple of weeks of fish studies however, no cooking could take place before the fish spices had been identified. So the whole expedition gathered around and started arguing. It was quickly established that we were dealing with a grouper (note to any future volunteers reading this: You should know what a grouper is. Pick up your identification book after reading this post.) The species was harder though. If you had been here you would have seen one computer nerd (that’s me), one former city executive, an accountant, a number of students and some graduates along with the staff of Blueventures Malaysia standing around a dead, frozen fish with books in their hands trying to id their dinner. For the record, it was concluded that it had to be a honeycomb grouper
I decided to maintain a blog of my own during this trip. As you might have guessed from my choice of words, English is not my mother tongue. The blog, in Swedish, can be viewed here http://multiventure.blogspot.com/ and even if you don’t understand swedish, you might enjoy some of the photos I have posted there.
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To end this post, I will do the same thing that I do on my own blog and that is to show a photo or two. This is a picture of a fairly normal sunset, taken during the first week of my stay here. Since then, I have taken very few pictures of the sunset. It looks like this almost every night
The reason why I don’t take so many sunset pictures nowadays is probably because I got used to the beauty of this place. The sunset is always there and so is the beach and the coral reef, staff and the other volunteers.
It feels like I am already starting to miss Tioman, and there is more the two weeks left of the expedition.