Saturday, June 9, 2012

Another world.

Assalamualaikum w.b.t

How have your day been? I hope it's been good.
And if you're reading this early in the day, I hope you have a great day ahead! :D

As for me..
TODAY. WAS. ~AMAZING~!

I went to Bidong Island today (8th June, since I'm updating this past midnight). I've been wanting to go there for so long! The last time I've been there I was 10, I think. Bidong Island is in Terengganu. It's a research centre for Universiti Malaysia Terengganu, therefore it is not used for commercial purposes (e.g.:tourism). 

I was really quiet this morning. If you know me, you'd know that when I'm quiet, something is amiss. I was really excited to go, but I had bad feelings. Maybe it was just my nerves, but I had to force myself to not think of the worst case scenarios. 

To get to Pulau Bidong we (my parents and I) had to take a boat from Merang Jetty . To drive to Merang from our home took about half an hour (not including breakfast and stopping at the gas station), and the boat ride lasted less than an hour. 



 On the boat, I had time to think. 


if you'll be my boat, I'll be your sea.

Being surrounded by the wide majestic sea, with salty air hitting my face,  I couldn't help but to let my mind wander far, as far as the horizon. I haven't been on a boat for years, I've forgotten how it felt. I've always repeat memories of me snorkelling, until I overlook the simple bliss of just being on a boat. The water was nice, no cruel currents. The occasional bump from going over a wave is inevitable, but there's no harm done. Thankfully I'm not the kind of person who gets seasick in conditions like this. Living on land, we normally see the top layer of the ocean. It's just water and waves, as far as the eye can see, but this is just a cover of another world. A world filled with magnificence and beauty. This is just the ocean, what else do we overlook everyday? Hmm.

The first thing I saw after getting off the boat. See how clear the water is?

Walking on that thing was tricky.

The last time I was here, there were only a block of rooms, an open kitchen, a zinc-roofed hut to eat under, and a cabin.


but now, a lot of commodities and facilities have been built which makes it easier to carry out research and activities on this island. Seeing the change really reminds me of how long has it been. I felt like I was revisiting my childhood. Or at least a small moment of it. I was here once, as a little girl. Now I'm older. heh.



Imagine you sitting on the swing made from the buoy, or laying on the hammock. No worries, no care. Just a fantastic view, a cool breeze and the sound of waves crashing onto the beach. Bliss.

When my dad asked me if I wanted to go, the answer was an immediate "Yes!". Then my dad asked if I'm sure because we weren't going because of business, but we were tagging along people who did have work to do there. I can't decide to go home in the afternoon or anything. Once we get there, we're gonna be there until evening. After a lot of consideration, I decided to go. If I don't go now, when will the chance come by again? Who knows.

Right after putting our stuff down, I went to walk along the beach with my mom. Soon after, I was already in the water. To swim, to explore, that was the reason I came in the first place.


Equipped with a goggle and a mask, I immersed myself in the water, trusting the water to keep me afloat. It feels good to feel so weightless. The second I opened my eyes, it was as if I had entered a new world. The nervousness, gone. A school of fishes hurriedly swam away, reminding me that I was not actually a part of their world. The area that I swam in first was filled with dead corals. It was like an ancient city under there. I could see a variety of fish feeding off the algae growing on the dead corals. I even saw a jellyfish!

The best thing about Bidong Island not being a tourist attraction is I don't have to worry about other people being there. No crowded swimming areas. You don't have to worry about bumping in other people. I was the only person swimming until the visitors came.

Oh, and a staff from UMT also gave me baby turtles to release. 



don't ask about the fingers.

be free little ones. Feel like a mother sending off a child to the first day of school.

Then, I continued snorkelling but water kept getting into my mask, filling 1/3 of it so I wanted to tighten it a little. As I pulled the strap, the strap broke, leaving me with no gear. I had to wait for the men to come back from diving to ask for a new strap. So I decided to chillax.





 I lied on the hammock. It was afternoon at that time. The tide got slightly higher, so the sound of the waves got louder. There's just something very therapeutic about the sound of waves crashing on the beach. You can't hear anything else except for the occasional buzzing of boat engines that were passing by. The wind got stronger too, enough to make the hammock sway side to side. That's relaxation at it's best. "Life is beautiful" I thought. It's just one of those moments that makes you feel so. These moments are the moments you should return to when you're stressed. This is the "happy place". I fell asleep for a while there.

A while after I woke up, the men came back from their diving trip. A few of them were stung by jellyfish. There were two layers of jellyfish where they were diving, and they got caught in the middle. Ouch!

I got my mask fixed, though! Which means I can go snorkelling again, but not before lunch, of course. Got to have energy. We brought Nasi Kerabu from our usual breakfast spot, where we had breakfasts before we came. Zuhur prayers were performed during lunch time, too. After all, it is He who created all that is in the universe, Subhanallah. Did you know that you can take the wudhu' using sea water, and even perform solat on the beach? I prayed on an open wooden gathering area, though.

Since I was still full, I couldn't go jump in the water just yet. I had the chance to walk on the other side of the beach. I have been on the right side of the beach since morning. Mom told me that the corals on the left side were in better condition. More live corals were located there.

le left side (just the end of it actually)

the boat we rode. Behind it is the right side.

See how clear the water is?


I went back into the water not long after the stroll. I was still kinda full at the time, but CHALLENGE ACCEPTED! Haha! The corals here were better than the other side. There were more live ones, and more fishes were here too. There were so many different species of fish, and all of them so very interesting. Way more interesting than the species of homo sapiens I meet every day *cough.

The visitors arrived when I was still snorkelling. After meeting them and what not, I continued snorkelling again, this time 3 other people were with me. Adults. So this time I was more courageous to go further. That's dangerous. Before they came I didn't go as far I wanted to.I even got the chance to go to the end of the beach, where there are rocks and stuff. I saw a sea anemone and clown fishes there! :D

I saw:
  • sea cucumbers
  • parrotfish
  • porcupinefish
  • damslefish (i think)
  • toadfish
and a whole lot of other species. I'm sorry, I'm no expert. I even had to open up Wikipedia to make that list. Confession, lol. I wish I had a waterproof camera with me.

We were done with snorkelling, but we were still chatting near the beach. Just chilling in the water when my mom called me out from the water to go home. :(

Look who came to say goodbye.

Bye-bye happy place

See what I mean about an unknown world

Hello, main land.

I swam for 5 hours or so in total. The soreness was only noticeable after dinner. My legs were like jelly. Couldn't even stand without feeling like fracturing them. Now I remember how tiring swimming actually is. Heh.

It was short, I wish I could've stayed longer. InsyaAllah I will have more trips like this.


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