Monday, 27 May 2013

Bumming it in Brunei

Well, we have now been just over a week in Brunei. Plans change all the time, now the change is we're not leaving Sophia in Miri (in Malaysia south of here) to fly to Singapore, but instead here. A nice cruiser who has got a mooring here just left to go haul out in Kudat and then to Philippines and he is letting us use his mooring. We actually even think we'll use it also when we go to Denmark in July. The big advantage of a mooring over a marina is no rats or cockroaches are able to get on the boat. The mooring is almost new and it's pretty safe here, so we feel OK leaving our most precious possession here.
Royal Brunei Yacht Club's mooring field (all owned by the locals and expats), only the big ketch is on anchor, as well as the Polish boat that's on a lean when they anchored too close to shore, ups.
Tomorrow we then begin a marathon travel day to get to Singapore. Two buses to get into town, then another bus to Miri across the border, then two flights to Singapore and finally a taxi to Theresa's house very late in the evening. We're really looking forward to Singapore though, it will be great to see Phil's parents and Theresa & co, plus they got great food there...

We have literally just been bumming around here in Brunei, but have enjoyed it too. The club really is very nice, and is a bit of heaven for the many expats living here, in an a country where alcohol is illegal, so everyone walks around with a chilli bin, pretty funny. We have met a bunch of people and they are all very nice and friendly to us, even buying us dinners! The far majority seems to be teachers, but there are also pilots and a few other industries (oil one of them).

We even joined in on the club's dinghy racing on the Sunday in an ISO, but unfortunately it was a total drifter and because there's so much current (tide) we were literally sailing backwards despite there being some wind. The fastest we went was when we towed by the dinghy! We still had a nice day and got to meet even more people.
Where we bum around most days: in the yacht club with free wifi and power plugs... Swimming pool in the background! No, it's not ice cream wrappers on the table...
We did go into town one more day for more sightseeing. Unfortunately the national museum is closed because it's leaking, and the big mosque we had hoped to get into and especially up the tower was also closed to visitors. Instead we visited the Royal Regalia Museum, basically the Sultan's show-off of his life and all the silly things has been gifted by other countries etc. There was nice air-con and we even 'got' to wear these cosy slippers while inside. About the only cool thing was the huge dragoon 'car' which is powered (pushed and pulled) only by people!

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