Saturday, June 30, 2012


Bobby Farrel of Boney M
First, it was Bobby. Bobby Farrell was 61 when he passed on. I was a teenager when Boney M came on stage and they were one of the hottest singing sensation then.

Boney M is one of my favorite music groups, along side Abba and Bee Gees, and I can still remember the songs which captivated me in my teen after three decades. They were a colourful foursome, producing beautiful music.

I listened to "El Lute" over and over again in my early teen when it was played over the airwaves. It was one of the first songs that captivated my heart. Then, there was River of Babylon, which I used to hum to the lyrics. Later, there was "Rasputin" and finally, the last song that captivated me over the airwaves was "We Kill the World" when I heard it over the radio at my boarding school.

And, how could I forget the song "Sad Movies", which brought back nostalgic memory of my first visit to Sematan for many years after the visit. The last song that I acquired was the Boney M version of "Sad Movies" on Youtube last year before I came to PNG.

Donna Summers
Her song that caught my attention was "She Works Hard for the Money" back in the early 80's.It was a great song. At 63, she has gone to meet her Maker.

Robin Gibb of Bee Gees
His younger brother, Andy Gibb died in 1988 when he was only 30 years old. Now, Robin Gibb is dead and he was only 62. He was a member of Bee Gees with two other brothers. The group brought us hits such as "Saturday Night Fever" in the 1980s.

They are dead. More will die in coming years. Fame and wealth will not stop death. Their time had come. We too will be meeting our maker, at different time. Time really flies. In a few years, I will be gone too, leaving behind this world. Here today and gone tomorrow. Nobody lives forever. Enjoy life while you can.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Mulu National Park II

Day 2 - Wind Cave and Clearwater Cave

(The original post first appeared on in 1995. This version has been edited.)

On the second day, the trip was by long-boats, starting from the jetty at Royal Mulu Resort Hotel.

On the way, we stopped at a Penan Settlement where some of our members purchased handicraft made by Penan.

We re-gathered at another spot for the onward journey to Wind Cave. After 15 minutes, we reached our destination and disembarked at a jetty. Two paths branch out from the jetty. One boardwalk leads up to Wind Cave, up on a hill and the other to Clearwater Cave.

Like Lang Cave, Wind cave is full of stalagmite and stalactite. The boardwalk ascends and descends steeply in the cave and at one narrow spot, you can feel cool breeze blowing, hence the name Wind Cave. It is much larger than Lang Cave.

From Wind Cave, we walked along the boardwalk clinging to the steep cliff walls high above ground. If you are afraid of height, it's too bad for you. You still have to go forward. There is no escape. The boardwalk leads to a resting spot where you can take a swim in the clean, clear water. Clearwater Cave is adjacent to it. It took about 10 minutes' walk from Wind Cave.

To reach Clearwater Cave, you need to take the 'stairway to heaven'. It is 200 steps up to reach the cave entrance, tiring for folks who are not fit. From the entrance, we climbed down, first to the path on the right, making a loop, before taking the path on the left. A fast-flowing underground river flows through Clearwater Cave. The water is cool and clear. Bring an empty bottle and fill up a bottle of Clearwater water to bring home as souvenir of your trip. Unfortunately, the tour guide forbade anyone from taking a dip or swim in the fast-flowing water. "It's dangerous!". The sight of the underground river is one to behold. Amazingly beautiful! The cave visit ended at Clearwater Cave.

As a finale, one can enjoy one's final pleasure of the Mulu trip by flinging oneself into the clean, clear water for a swim at the swimming spot together with the fish. It's a mini Jiuzhaigou. Serene and beautiful!

Finally, it was time to depart. Tomorrow, we would be flying back to Sibu via Miri.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Mulu National Park I

Day 1 - Lang Cave and Deer Cave

(The original post first appeared on in 1995. This is an edited version of the original post.)

Some were green with envy when some of our colleagues were given a Company sponsored holiday to Mulu National Park last year. This year was our turn for the trip and there were 61 of us in the group.

On the eve of Hari Raya holiday in 2005, we left for Miri on the first flight from Sibu at 7:00 a.m.

At Miri Airport, we met up with our colleagues who left a day earlier. Another group would be leaving Sibu in the afternoon for Mulu National Park.

From Miri Airport, we left for Mulu Airport and from Mulu Airport, we took vans to Royal Mulu Resort Hotel. We were welcomed with traditional dances, music and a cold drink. We then dispersed to check into our respective rooms. The little time we had before the start of our excursion in the afternoon allowed us to explore the surrounding of Mulu Resort Hotel.

Our lunch was not at Royal Mulu Resort Hotel but rather at a restaurant across the river, operated by the tour agency, Tropical Travel.

After lunch, we walked a short distant to a newly built church to wait for our vans that would take us to Mulu National Park Office, where our trek would begin.

Walking on foot along the well-laid boardwalk through the jungle, the trek took us about one hour because the tour guide was stopping now and then to explain the different plant species. A normal walk takes between 35 - 45 minutes. Towards the end of the boardwalk, one path leads to the bat watching observatory platform and another leads to Lang and Deer Caves.

Lang Cave is the smallest of the four with low roof. It has an amazing number of beautiful stalagmite and stalactite.

Deer Cave is magnificent and stunning. Awesome. Photographs and expression cannot fully describe it. Its magnificence can only be felt by our sight and senses, not captured through photographs or expressed in words. Photographs, after all, cannot capture depth, size and dim light which our eyes can see in the cave. A glorious sight to behold! A world of its own with gigantic rock wall and floor tinged with moss displaying its glory under the light shining through the roof. The visual is heavenly, which men could not possibly see in the world outside. It is after all the world largest cave passage and the most striking and magnificent of the four caves.

It started to drizzle when we came out of Deer Cave. The last programme of the day was watching bats flying out from Deer Cave. They came out in small groups, starting at about 4:30 p.m.