Thursday, April 07, 2005

All play and no work

Yaaaaawwwwwwwwn..... This has been my reaction every single morning this whole week.

Last weekend was a long one (Thanks to Easter!!). AG and me had been to this island resort in Malaysia called Pangkor Laut Resort. Island Paradise .... more like it! We stayed in villas built on stilts in the sea. The whole of last week was spend in anticipation of the vacation and looks like the whole of this week will be spend getting over the hangover (hangover... not as in post-alcoholic but as in post-amazingly-relaxing-send-u-in-a-haze-vacation hangover). Hence the yawn. But coming back to the resort... it had the best spa this side of the world and AG and me indulged ourselves with an Ayurvedic spa treatment session.

The trip from Singapore to the resort was quite tiring ... home-cab to Changi Airport- flight to KL International Airport-cab to KL domestic airport-flight to Pangkor island-cab to Pangkor jetty-ferry to Pangkor Laut island.... phew! On arrival we were greeted by some indignant and annoyed resort residents... a flock of peacocks!!

When we were shown to our villa... it took my breath away... the villa and the endless sea laid out beneath it! You could hear the sea ceaselessly but gently lapping at the beach in the distance. The bedroom opened out to a patio and the bathroom had a garangutan bath with a picture hanging beside it...and lo! the picture moved... AG thought his eyes were playing tricks on him and then it hit him ... it was not a picture at all... the bath had a view of the sea!! We had the most amazing view from the villa and what was more was you could enjoy it in your bath with some excellent wine and juicy mangoes! Our villa was perched at edge of a walkway on stilts and right into the sea. The bathroom had a window extending along the breadth which opened out to the sea. Oooooh!!

Our side of the island had been converted into a spa village with numerous spa treatment huts, spa facilities, an infinity pool, some structures which looked like treehouses, some massage huts which were on the beach and where you could get your massage while watching the sea or curl up in the afternoon with a book in hand. Outside the spa village there were the other resort facilities including a few restaurants and other villas, tennis courts more pools, gym, sauna, jacuzzi etc. On the other side of the island was Emerald Bay with a beach which AG and me didn't like too much. We ended up spending the next 4 days in the pool and then stretched out under the beach parasols tanning ourselves to a unhealthy nut brown! (the upside is ...our teeth look much whiter now!!)

Every morning I would get up early to sit on the patio and watch the sea stretched out below me... I spotted quite a few flying fish (actually just normal fish which jump out and dive in to catch the smaller fish). Then there were the small sunbirds which sat companionably on the patio railing and chattered with me. And then for no apparent reason got bored and flew away. Their flight was quite amusing to watch... they would take off soar and then dip, soar and dip ....

Nighttime too had its own brand of magic to weave. Our 3rd night on the island was a full moon night and one can never successfully describe the glory of a full moon shining above with the sea stretched out below as far as the eyes can see.

During our stay we also saw a couple of monitor lizards. These creatures are emperors among lizards... the largest of the species... you could mistake them for baby crocs. But they are gentle creatures and can lie still for unbelievably long durations at a time. Also spotted a whole extended family of hornbills (didn't know they existed in the wild, thought you could only see them in birdparks!)
Here's a monitor lizard:

These are some pictures we took of the place:

These are the spa villas. Ours was the one farthest away, in the middle.

This is the bath and you can see the "picture" over it!

And this is the view from the bath early in the morning!

And above is a pic of the pool by the sea