Friday, May 08, 2009

From Batu Caves to Maran: Day 3

A Walk-umentary: Day 3

Rainy day and snake skins always bring me down....

"Bangun! Bangun!"

"Bangun! Bangun!"

Uncle Shunmugan morning call was very effective. He went around the hall waking everyone up! At 2 o'clock in the morning!

I was very tempted to roll back into a ball and continue sleeping. I just got 3 hours of shuteyes....Amma! Ayoyo! Heheh!

I dragged myself up and got ready. We had to jump onto the truck again, to be transfered back to Sri Subramaniar Temple in Temerloh.

Supper was fried beehoon served on banana leaf washed down with tea.

As usual, we gathered around for a briefing session. As we were about to leave the temple compound, it suddenly started to rain!

I scrambled for cover as I do not want to get my camera wet! Yup! That was my first reflex. LOL!

Many walker just braved the rain and continued with their journey but the officials advised about 50 of us to stay behind as the rain was getting heavier.

I tried to sleep but I couldn't. The floor was too cold to be slept on. So, I just sat on the chair and watched raindrops trickling down the zinc roof of the temple for three hours! LOL!

We were picked up by the truck around 7 am directly to the next stop where breakfast was served. Yum! The rain certainly was a blessing, eh? LOL! Instant energy perk from putu mayam and delicious dhal curry.

After hot meal, we continued our journey on foot to Jengka town.

The rain had reduced into a drizzle.

Jengka is town surrounded by oil palm plantations in Pahang.

Are these the female version of the DiGi Yellow Coverage Fellows? Heheh!

Wai Mun! Watch out for the lorry!!!

Thank God Wai Mun didn't get blown away as the lorry zoomed passed her. Looks scary, isn't it? At any time we would end up as a new coat of red tar on the road. :P

The road we walked were flanked by never ending palm oil plantation. Basically, not much change of scenery until the next stop - Sri Mahamuthumariamman Temple in Jengka 16.

The road goes on and on and this. I shudder when I look back at the photos.... Where did I get the strength to go through these?

Must be from the putu mayam! Heheh!

The Midnight Express.....

I love the way it "suddenly" appeared whenever my tiredness began to wear me down. Never fail to lift my spirit back up again! (Insert applause here for The Midnight Express) :D

The sky was cloudy. So, we were protected from the harsh sun rays.

Meet Mr. Gopi, one of many RELA volunteers for the walk. I noticed that Mr. Gopi alway walked some of the stretches with us even though he could take a ride on the bike.

Without the volunteers, this walk would not have happened. I couldn't thank them enough!

Welcome to Jengka 16!

We were supposed to rest and have lunch at this tiny Indian temple called Sri Mahamuthumariamman.

However, we decide to skip lunch at this temple and continue with our journey so that we could reach our next destination by 4pm, in time for the next ceremony - The Palkudam Procession.

According to Julie, we still have around 23km to cover. We try not to take the truck again! Heheh!

The sun was making its presence felt again! As if it was back with a vengeance! I could hardly open my eyes as I continued walking. Tears was rolling down from my eyes. Not because I was crying....but my contact lenses were drying up and irritating my eyes like crazy. (Note to self: Bring eyedrops and wear sunglasses next time)

Time to say bye bye to my Nike Shoes too....:(

The last day was really a challenge! Everything was against me! The blistering sun. The heat that rose from the hot tarmac. The pebbles that kept jumping into my shoes. The legs that were screaming for a stop. The throbbing blisters on my feet. The burning sensation on my skin. The irritating tears that kept rolling from my eyes. The shoulders that weighed like a tonne. The dry throat. The seemingly endless road. I could go on and on here....but you get the point, right?

Even the sign board was against me! Seen here - 16km more to go.

After I made the turn into the road that led to the temple....I got 17km! (Insert cry here!)

At that point, it was all up to the mind as the body was slowly succumbing to the physical torments!

Then, I saw a tiny stall selling sugar cane juice....It gave me temporary relief! I iced my eyes, my face, my forehead with it. LOL!

I caught up with Julie and Wai Mun at one of the food court by the roadside. We shared a plate of vegetarian fried rice. I wasn't that hungry but was really thirsty.

Julie had to teach the cook to specially cook our meal. No meat! No eggs! No animal products. We had to be 100% vegetarian throughout the journey. :P

We continued our journey after lunch. Soon I was walking alone again. Just couldn't keep up with that two ladies. LOL!

Oh yes...We saw lots of these by the road side on our third day. Fancy a snake skin belt? It came as no surprise because palm oil plantation are usually infested with rats. And where you have rats, there bound to be snakes. :P

I was praying that I didn't bump into those slitering creatures along the way. My prayers were answered! Vel! Vel! :)

"Keep walking", I kept reminding myself. Occasionally I got honked by the passing cars. That kept me awake! Most of the cars were heading towards the Sri Marathandavar Temple, our final destination!

Along the road, I was touched again with kindness and generosity from strangers. At least there were two refreshment stations serving ample supply of water melons, moru and drinks! All these made the walk more bearable especially on the hot afternoon. (Insert heart felt thank you to the volunteers and sponsors)

Summary of Day 3....CLICK PLAY!

The Palkudam Procession (Walk Wit Milk) coming soon!

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