One thing I love about vacationing with Dyann is that we don't sleep in. We get up, get going and look to suck the marrow out of every minute possible. So right around 6am we were up and ready to get our day going. With most of the guests still slumbering in their beds and the staff just starting to arrive, we basically had the entire resort to ourselves. We found a papalup, cleaned off a couple of beach beds and I made coffee and hot tea to watch the sun come up over the island. Spending the better part of the morning reading, relaxing and recooperating.
As the beach chairs slowly filled and the peaceful sounds of birds and lapping waves turned to kids playing and people having a good time, we decided it was time to do a little exploration into the local village. We needed a few supplies. Mainly some booze and wine so as not to have to pay the hotel for drinks, even though the average cost of a cocktail is 20 Ringat or about $5 US (talk about inexpensive!). Beyond supplies, lunch sounded inviting as well, so off we went.
Not knowing how far the Tekek Village was from Berjaya we opted to cajole one of the bellmen to give us a ride. They use these crazy trucks with the back cut out filled with bolted on seats to get guests to and from the resort. It was fun. Kind of like a Tioman Safari Truck, although there were no wildlife to be seen today.
Realizing again that this is still the Malaysian New Year, almost every shop was closed, except for a couple of Duty Free liquor stores, BINGO! And the random back alley restaurant. Priorities! Shopping, then EAT. Once again the prices amazed us. A bottle of Captain for $40 Ringat ($10 US)! WTF?! This place just keeps getting better. A bottle of Captains, Bailey's (for our "special coffee" in the morning) and a bottle of wine set us back just under $30US. Crazy. Can I just keep saying how crazy it is.
Now to find food. Not a lot of options. Through this alley strewn with broken down motorcycles, a goose pen with GIANT geese in it we stroll into what is being called a resort, but looks more like a youth hostel for those not wanting to be found. The restaurant is open and we are excited. Our first meal in Tioman outside of the resort. This is going to be great! Authentic food.
Nachos are on the menu. Tempting.
French Fries are on the menu. Tempting.
But on the back page of the menu there are 'local' specialities. Dyann goes with a chicken dish, and I opt for the fish curry.
The food was, meh, but the rice was cooked perfectly, and it filled our stomachs (Dyann thinks that hers was not really chicken, and I have to think that it was something afoul too, reminding me of the mystery meat often found in the MRE's Uncle Sam liked to feed me). The view was amazing, perched right on the water, surrounded by bamboo, mangrove and palm trees. There were hammocks to be had, and even a treehouse for the Swiss Family Robinson in all of us.
Strolling back to the resort donning my 100 pounds of booze and mixers (we are going to be here for a week) we pass what looks to be a promising food option right outside the resort gates. Definitely coming back here.
Pre-functed a little in the room with a hard earned rum & pineapple juice cocktail. Got caught up on social media, emails and random Facebook comments (you know who you are - our African traveler friends) and it was about time to find the perfect spot to watch the sunset. BEACH BAR.
It's the little moments like this that make traveling and exploring so worth it. To have a drink with the love of my life on a distant island away from the daily obligations and responsibilities. To just relax and watch the sun go down. There is nothing better.