Saturday, October 2, 2010


This was the homestay we had booked in. The lady to my right is the houseowner. The lady to her left is the daughter, Kak Lah who I called to confirm the booking, and her husband in red.

A simple house with two rooms, one converted for homestay. Dining is in the kitchen, as expected from a typical kampong house. Lunch was "ike singge", "ike goreng" plus BUDU and no veges. By the way, I do not necessarily crave for Budu but once served, and with the right mix of ikan tawar, all hell may broke loose. I grew up with such menus, occassionally with chicken as a delicacy. Fish used to be my staple food, what else if you were a fisherman's son. So, no veges is no problem

Back home in Subang Jaya, my wife has to coax me to take veges, as if I was her kid! And I am not kidding.

After a fulfilling lunch (indeed I was full), we took a short rest by the verandah. The occasional breeze cooled us from the heat generated by the asbestos roof. We decided to let the sun dipped a little before we continued our exploration.

3 main islands are inter-connected - Pulau Suri, Pulau Beluru and Pulau Teluk Renjuna. These are the islands that we cycled through. From Pulau Suri, we had to cross to Pulau Beluru, which is a short distance of under 3kms.

I retained my statement that these islands are still unspoilt, except for 2 spoilers. This was the first. A birds nest building, jutting out of nowhere like a sore thumb - sore thumb to me but cash for the owner. It is my fervent hope that this will be the first and the last, wishful thinking on my part.

Pulau Beluru housed the biggest school with hostel facilities and a fully dedicated jetty for the school children. 

Turning left from the school, a bridge connects Pulau Beluru with Pulau Teluk Renjuna.

Pulau Teluk Renjuna houses the mosque to cater for the surrounding islands.

An arch welcomed us to this kampong. I posed here, not really knowing the significance of the arch. It appeared rustic enough for a shot.

Children, as always, are my favorite subjects, whenever I come across them. No computer games for these kids. They improvised whatever they found.

One boy was proud to display a pet musang. Back in KL, pets are sold in hundreds and even thousands of ringgit. I bet this boy got his for free. And when asked what the musang eats, the boy casually says :"muse make pise". rhymes very well. Hj Khailani and I smiled at him. I don't think he understood our smile.

World cup fever is everywhere. Hj Khailani caught this action shot of the island's Ronaldo in blue. His pose and style certainly had the making of a pro footballer. Playing football in this "stadium" certainly requires much more skill than the international pros. Apart from the opponents, these players had also to contend with the coconut trees, the lamp post and the concrete path. A much greater skill certainly required.

I spent several minutes videoing their actions. Somehow, their actions and bravery doubled when they realized they were on video. 

Then, we came the second "spoiler". Out of nowhere, we came across a Taman, something one expects to find only on the mainland of Kota Bharu.

A signboard showed that it was a resettlement, proceeds from the zakat of MAIK. A bank logo indicates probably the source of this zakat funding. With some thought for preservation, the resettlement could have been tastefully done to retain the charms of the village.

We backtracked from Teluk Renjuna to continue to Pulau Seratus. Pulau Seratus is a misnomer. Unlike Pulau Beluru and Pulau Teluk Renjuna where these islands are seperated by a river, there is no distinct seperation. Secondly, why seratus? It is only one kampong.

I shot this lady who was jokingly disproving me taking her shot. "Wat gapo ambek gamba oghe tuo, tok comel" (why take an old lady's picture, not beautiful). I replied "takpo, asa hati comel" (it's ok, as long as the heart is beautiful). I guessed my reply caught her by surprise.

She peeled the lidi for satay sticks for sale. I suggested to her why not sell satay as well. She just smiled and we moved on, heading back to Pulau Suri.

By about 5pm, we had completed our ride around the islands. While sipping our drinks at the warong near the jetty, we realized we had completed our assignments.

Do we need to experience the homestay? We are after all, kampong folks too. We decided to forego our stay but paid the owner the RM100 for 2 pax (a night stay, lunch, dinner and breakfast).

We took the boat back to Kota Bharu. The nice couple of Kak Lah and husband sent us off at the Pantai Suri jetty.


oops did I just say that? said...

Abah your camouflage baju has seen its days lah. BTW I remember going to Teluk Rejuna. Clearly, on a boat.

ARZ said...

Ha..ha..Mimi. Please don't belittle my camouflage baju. It's soooo comfortable because it's air-conditioned, you know the netting material?
It had served its owner to the Burmese border, to Sulawesi, to the mountains and valleys and will continue to serve it's owner.
In fact, kalau dah koyak "Dimana Kan Ku Cari ganti".

Yes, I know you will recall when I brought you and Ila to Pulau Teluk Renjuna - 2 chubby kids from the city dishing out raya goodies to the kampong folks. Wished we could continue this tradition!

Al-Manar said...

Pulau Beluru? How many, including your own kids, knows 'beluru' when asked. A posting on this alone can be intresting and informative. Beluru ( sometimes referred to as Tambang Beluru , a kind of fish, plentiful in the days gone by, getting scarce now, can be interesting. How ingenius our old folk were in dealing with this abundant fish, this gift of God, despite its million tiny hairlike bones. Masak Ikan singgam, deep frying, keropok, budu are among the creations. And with your beautiful photos you can produce what others will envy.

nadia said...

salam penulis. sy mintak guna gambar satu (kids football) utk cerita kat blog kelas sy. maaf x tgu respon penulis.