Into The Wilds of Langkawi

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

What better day to take a romp into the wilds of Langkawi than during monsoon season, with waves of precipitation crashing into us intermittently?

Don’t worry – it’s a rhetorical question.

We already did it.

Langkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

There is this amazing stretch in the cycling trip where you get to jetski across a dam on your bike!

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Yes, that’s right! Ride across a flooded dam on your bike!

Not to worry – it’s perfectly safe, assuming the current isn’t too strong or the water is too deep. You’ll be fine.

I mean, most people usually take ATV’s or trucks. But those guys are wusses.

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Yeah, you heard me!

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Through endless rubber plantations and paddy fields – lush greenery all the way!

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

And the occasional critter that will stop and stare.

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

To be honest, I think we’re the ones that stop and stare more.

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah
The decrepit Langkawi Lake House

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Did I mention it was monsoon season?

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

So come join us into the wilds of Langkawi!

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Yeah, come join us in this dark and creepy forest…

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour Bikelah

Langkawi Eco Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour Bikelah

Another highly memorable section is this super secret pathway that extends out onto the ocean. Technically it’s private property, so I can’t tell you where the entrance is.

Langkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour Bikelah

It’s part of a wave breaker wall that was privately constructed, but not very well maintained. It curves out over the west coast of Langkawi Island.

Langkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour Bikelah

Langkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour BikelahLangkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour Bikelah

Langkawi Eco Nature Cycling Tour Bikelah

And off we go to another adventure!

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Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

The inaugural Asia Pacific Masters Games has just taken place, right here in Penang, Malaysia! Here are some brief glimpses of the Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games that took place in September of 2018.

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Now I bet you’re sitting there like the Thinker, thinking to yourself:

What is the Masters Games?

Well, put simply – Masters refers to veterans, or those who are typically outside the range and considered “past the prime” for competitive sports.

Basically the Masters Games is an all-encompassing international multi-sport event, like the Olympics, but for all ages and abilities!

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Anyway, this is the opening ceremony for Penang’s Asia Pacific Masters Games.

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

It went off with several bangs.

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

And of course some speeches.

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

And marching.

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

And some snazzy song and dance to keep everyone entertained.

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

And of course some colourful things to thrill the throngs!

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei
The iconic transportation of Penang – the mighty trishaw! Now in technicolour

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Did I mention there were a lot of bangs?

And here’s the swimming segment of the Masters Games:

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

And here’s the cycling segment:

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games HoweiPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei
Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

Healthy drinks and sporting events are made for each other! Hope he’s ready for some good business!

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Howei

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Penang APMG Cross Channel Swim

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

Beaches and sun! That must mean…we’re in Penang? That’s right – it’s the Penang APMG Cross Channel Swim!

The what? Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

Every year Penang hosts a swim across the perilous straits of Malacca – a whopping 6 kilometres of briny water filled with ships, junk and jellyfish!

So before you start, you need to get your head checked.

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim
Yeah, check out this body, baby!

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

They’ll check the rest of you for free!

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

I jest – it’s not that crazy. I mean, there are people that come from all over the world to swim this channel!

There are dozens of us! Dozens!

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

I jest – it’s not that lonely. There’s usually a few hundred brave souls.

And a few thirsty ones that just can’t wait to jump in the water.

This is the day before the actual swim, mind you.

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim
You sick of this view yet?
Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim
Hell no!

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim
Cute interracial couple (they actually just met)

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel SwimPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim
Ready for launch, comrade captain

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim
One day all this will be yours – to swim!

And now we move on to the actual Asia Pacific Masters Games (the aforementioned APMG)!

Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim Penang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel SwimPenang Asia Pacific Masters Games Cross Channel Swim

Really, just random shots of Penang.

You likee?

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Don’t Spoil It For Yourself

Have you heard someone rant about how their Facebook or Instagram feed is always full of other people’s perfect vacation pictures or beautiful selfies? And it’s making them feel so jelly and ruining their moods. Every. Single. Day.

How did those rants make you feel?

Do you shake your head in sadness? Do you giggle in glee? Do you secretly relate to them?

And in response, everyone keeps saying things like:

Those are all their best moments – they will never show you their lows; only highs.

Just think about how many hundred times they had to retake that selfie!

Or my favourite:

Oh my goodness, who the hell cares!

Seriously, who cares about people getting angry at other people for making them feel inferior or insecure? Those people are not worthy of your attention.

You don’t need someone else to make you feel inferior or insecure – you can do that all by yourself. And you do.

You Inferior

You weak, pathetic, whimpering keyboard warrior, hiding behind your online anonymity and impenetrable virtual screen. You sniveling pool of discombobulate gelatinous genetic gravy wasting away the resources of the world with your sorry excuses and depressive virtual shenanigans.

Why can’t you be happy for these “friends” of yours on your social media that you clearly feel so connected to that you talk or chat with them all the time, instead of browsing and semi-stalking their post, leaving passive aggressive comments?

They’re giving you great suggestions of new places to visit and dope experiences to try! They’re sharing their happiness with you (and a few others, sure).

So what if they want to show off a little?

Either be happy for them, or forget about it and move on with your life.

Oh wait, is that your life?

Vicariously living off the sweet moments and intriguing updates of your “friends”? Hitting that sweet button to give your ultimate approval to everyone in your circle, and an endorphin boost to your brain?

And so you feel entitled to feel insulted for being excluded from these gatherings that you always decline to go to? You’re allowed to feel angry that these other people get to go on sweet vacations while you’re stuck working your ass off to pay for your own damn bills?

Sure you are entitled to. But don’t go whining about it on your own social media, or worse, on other people’s perfectly curated posts and albums. That just makes it look worse.

Just simmer in silence and let it erode away at your sense of self worth and sanity, like all the other silent lurkers petrified into inaction by reality and their own fear of anything outside their comfort zone.

Simmer in silence at the injustice that is thrust upon you by these inconsiderate bastards that flaunt their good looks and fortune and happy lifestyles and fun activities.

Simmer in silence as the world moves on without you while you make up excuses to exclude yourself from your own family and friends and society, because you’re too afraid to even try, afraid that you will fail a thousand times over from the 14,000,605 eventualities that you foresaw.

Dr. Strange Good Guy Spoiler Free

Don’t spoil it for yourself. 

None of this applies to you?

Then congratulations! You are a master at not giving a crap about what others think about you.

And that’s exactly what you should do!

Because you have no control whatsoever about how people interpret your words and actions, and what they secretly think about you in their judgmental little minds.

You only have control over you. You and your own thoughts.

So save them for someone that matters, like future you.

Forget about the judgmental jesters and perfect preeners with their perfect photography skills.

Go do your own thing, and make yourself happy. Because only you can do that.

Nobody can or will do it for you.

 

Man, I gotta get to some of those sweet places sometime! Now seems good.

 

P.S. Dark Reader is the best thing ever!

 

Chrome Dark Reader Night Mode Best

So good on the eyes…

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Day & Night At Kerian International Duathlon

Kerian International Duathlon Day Night

If you’ve been to a remotely competitive sports events, there is one thing you inevitably experience – waking up and being outside at an ungodly hour before the sun has even risen.

You will have experienced the day and night in the course of that event. This is the day and night of the Kerian International Duathlon.

But first, stay in school, kids:

Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai

Here are some glimpses into the Kerian International Duathlon (the fourth edition):

Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai

Did I mention getting up at the crack of dawn?

And then there’s the transition area where you set up a nice little home for yourself in the darkness of night:

Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai

And there’s the end! That was fast!

Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai

Insert obligatory cat photo: Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai

Don’t worry guys, he’s fine.

Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai
Tony Tan, the legend!

Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai

Post-event preponderances:

Kerian International Duathlon Bagan Serai

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Rainy Round Island

Penang Island Haji Rain Cycling

On the day of Eid al-Adha – the Day of Sacrifice in Malaysia, we did a rowdy ride around Penang Island. We witnessed and endured much, with the rain coming down on us halfway through our ride. There were also some rather gory scenes, with public slaughter of livestock (it isn’t called the Day of Sacrifice for nothing), which I will spare you.

Penang Island Haji Rain Cycling Penang Island Batu Maung Haji Rain Cycling

It’s mostly our usual cyclist shenanigans.

Penang Island Haji Rain Cycling Penang Island Haji Rain Cycling Penang Island Haji Rain Cycling Penang Island Haji Rain Cycling

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The Biggest Penang Cycling Event

Do you know which is the biggest cycling event in Penang?

Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam

The name itself might not be the catchiest, but it’s definitely been one of the largest since its inception back in 2008.

That’s right! It’s been running for 10 years straight, and this year they celebrated their 10th anniversary – with a big ride, of course!

Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam

Taking place right in the heart of George Town, at the old field by the sea, this iconic event takes riders over 80 kilometres through bustling city streets (at least not so bustling early on a Sunday morning); Penang’s major highways; up gradual rolling hillsides; past rural kampung areas that people couldn’t imagine existed in modern day Penang; and past picturesque beaches and coastal boulevards.

Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam

There’s almost always a hill in the background.

Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam

And we pass some intriguing gardens and attractions on our way.

Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam

Did I mention Penang is very hilly?

Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam

And of course when there’s lots of people, there’s lot of wacky antics.

Penang Event CFAL Cycling Howei Sam

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Dark Magic & Night Markets

Welcome to Penang – a tiny island of 293 square kilometres that is home to just about every unique thing there is! And that includes dark magic and night markets, among others.

Penang Magination

Welcome to Magination! A most well-kept secret right there in George Town. Magination Penang

Beware of dark magic within.

Magination Penang

A truly bizarre blend of spooky and sensational!

And some history.

Magination Penang

And merchandising.

Magination Penang Magination PenangMagination Penang

And a place for shows! Because magic is all about performance.

Magination Penang Magination Penang

Finally, merch you can put your hands on (and buy)!

Magination Penang

Fun fun magic shows!

Magination Penang

And at the end of the tour, you’ll wake up and wonder how you ended up in an empty warehouse. Magination Penang

And next door is where the construction magic happens.

Magination Penang Penang Night Market

Through a loopy rabbit hole, we appear on another side of Penang after the sun has gone down – the bustling night markets that pop up at selected locations every day of the week (with nary a repeat), to keep you on your toes!

Penang Night Market Penang Night Market Penang Night Market Penang Night Market

What night market would be complete with yummy tropical fruit? Penang Night Market Penang Night Market Penang Night Market

When you tire of the fray, you can try listening to other emo songs. Or extricate yourself to a nearby field to munch on your spoils of war.

Penang Night Market Penang Night Market

More juicy tropical fruit!

Penang Night Market Penang Night Market

Followed by colourful toys!

Penang Night Market Penang Night Market

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Monkey Beach Baby!

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
Can I help you?

Welcome to Monkey Beach – a pristine park of Penang’s northern National Park! And yes, there are actually monkeys here! For now.

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Dusty Tree Monkey
Cute guy munching on leaves

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

It starts off with a nice civilised pathway, but wait until you get slightly deeper.

The trail to Monkey Beach is about a 3km hike across semi-forested areas and short stretches of sandy beach.

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

And there’s actually signage! Huzzah!

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Now before you head in, you’ll most likely be accosted by some of the salespeople at the entrance claiming there is a landslide blocking off the passageway to Monkey Beach after the USM campus. This is a bold-faced lie.

They will also insist you need a boat to access the beach, and will insist you pay a deposit to ensure you have a boat ready to take you wherever you need. You do not need a boat.

But it’s still nice to take a boat ride on the way back after you’re exhausted from all that hiking. However, you can easily get a return trip by boat from Monkey Beach itself, or wherever there is a jetty.

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Access to this National Park is also entirely free! That’s right – FREE!

All you need to do is list down your personal details in case you run away with the monkeys and they need some names to put in the news.

Monkey Beach Penang National Park ExploreMonkey Beach Penang National Park ExploreMonkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Watch out for the little critters!

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
A little disrepair

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
Filthy flower flipping me the bird
Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
Things start to get a bit messy further in

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
Fancy some jelly?
Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Hermit Crab
A shy little guy
Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
Returning to nature

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Hermit Crab Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Dusty Tree Monkey

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
Slightly cheekier type of primate lurking nearby

You’re bound to meet plenty of wildlife in here, as long as you keep your eyes peeled and your wits about you. Just make sure the wildlife doesn’t make off with your sunglasses.

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
If you see this, you’re almost at Monkey Beach

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
So lazy they couldn’t even be bothered posing for a picture

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
I wasp here too!

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

You can even go for a swim in the relatively clean (but still murky) salt waters of Monkey Beach!

Just watch out for the watercraft and jetskis and banana boats.

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
Horsey taking a bath
Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
My poor attempt at underwater photography

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

The best part is after you spend the better part of an hour trudging up to the beach, you can easily hail a speedboat back to the starting point. All for the cheap, cheap price of RM50 per boat!

I wouldn’t bother booking them beforehand, which the salespeople are wont to encourage you to do before you step foot into the park.

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore

Monkey Beach Penang National Park Explore
You leave now, yes?

 

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Monkeying Around Penang

Monkeying Around Penang

Sometimes it’s fun to monkey around – hop from tree to tree or sit around scratching your bum. Penang is a great place to monkey around!

You can go for a little jungle trek a stone’s throw from town, up near the Botanical Gardens.

Monkeying Around Penang

Coming down is the hard part.

Take a spin through George Town any time of the day – night is better as it gets quite hot in the day.

Monkeying Around Penang Monkeying Around PenangMonkeying Around Penang Monkeying Around Penang Monkeying Around Penang

Or chill at one of our brand new local government service centres! A new one just opened up in the heart of Jelutong.

Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong

It’s headed by a charismatic young father YB Ong Ah Teong.

Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong Monkeying Around Penang Monkeying Around Penang Jelutong Kadun Service Centre Ong Ah Teong

As you can see he’s very popular with the locals. Give him your support and help him get things done!

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