Sob, sob - last day in paradise! We thought now we had our Open Water (qualified divers - still in shock!) we should dive in what's known as one of the best dive spots in the world. By stroke of luck and networking skills, my old boss's daughter, Sunny, owns a dive school on the beach we were staying (good old Long Beach) so we had a stroll over there (how hard is it to actually walk on sand? How do people run? Baywatch was a fix I'm sure!) and met Sunny (who was lovely) and arranged to do a dive on the Friday morning at 8.30 at a dive spot called the Temple of the Sea, so named as its home to most of the marine life that live in the sea surrounding the islands.
There was only the three of us with the Divemaster, Nicky, which was so much better than in Ko Tao and there were about 8 of us to two people. We took a little boat out there, had to lug our heavy oxygen tanks to the boat ourselves - see pics for just how ridiculous I look with the great big thing on my back - and got in the water all drama-free - which is the second time for me I've managed to dive without having a bit of a panic. Result! The dive spot was amazing. Definitely the best place we've ever dove. The visability was so clear and it was just full of marine life, one of the first things we saw was a stingray just swimming along below us. Then we saw three massive puffafish, lots of Nemo fish which are actually so tiny, I thought they would be bigger. Later on we spotted two turtles and managed to get a few snaps of them - I actually felt like we were in the Nemo film or the Little Mermaid! Claire-Lou later got bullied by the evil fish in the sea, the Triggerfish. These fish mark out their coral terrorties and are renowned for biting the fins of divers (at best) thinking they are big fish if we swim through their patch. Claire-Lou felt a tug on her fins and thought she had hit a rock, turned around and realised that she was being bitten by one of these sea bullies! Hilarious, wish I had got a snap of it! Towards the middle of the dive I saw a shark in the distance, apparently they are really scared of divers, I dont think they like anything as big as they are so when they spot us they swim the other way. The shark I saw was swimming away from us but looked about 2 metres long so would have been amazing but ridicuslously scary to see close up!
After the dive we spent our last day attempting to get even browner, we may have reached our peak, I'm not sure! On the island they do the most amazing shakes which we all got addicted to, Mars ice blended milkshakes - probably the most fattening drink we could have but so good. I'm sure those who have been probably know what we're on about!! We planned to walk around to the other side of the island and see the sunset on Coral Beach, but, as per usual, fell asleep and woke up about 6pm so it was too late! Gutted but perhaps the next island...
For our last night we met Sunny and two of her friends for some food and saw the moon rise over the island, I've never seen the moon so close to the earth, it was surreal, it looked as though we could touch it, like a great big lamp over the hill!! Sunny's friends, Sarah and Led live in Kuala Lumpar and said that they would meet us when we arrived there to show us around and take us on a night out, we all got very excited, especially when they told us about the immense shopping there is to do there...hmmm...credit cards at the ready!! We managed to find some level of sensibleness in us and called it a night at about midnight as we had a 6.30 wake up to get the boat to the coast and move onwards and upwards to the Cameron Highlands!
In the morning, after a sleepless night, three in a double bed with a system of 33.3% of the bed each in ridiculous heat does not give you a good night's sleep! We got the boat taxi to the coast - Anne-Marie managed to leave her flip flops (her only ones at the moment) on the beach and ended up paying a water taxi to take her back to the beach to find them, it was hilarious, she ended up paying him 10 ringlets to do it (OK, I call the money here Ringlets, further evidence that Mansfield tongue does not go around forgein words - plus ringlets is nicer than whatever they are actually called!)...the speedboat back to the coast must be the craziest and most danagerous thing ever! We have to wear life jackets and hold on for dear life, I'm sure my lungs were jumping into my mouth everytime we hit some waves - crazy Malays!