[Author's Note: I wrote this an hour after I "touched down", only got to post it now.. :)]
Two years and nine days after the Bintan trip, the gang of six embarked on yet another exciting journey to the land of the sun, the sand, and the sea (and the shops, and the spa) -- Batam!
Introducing the six remarkable characters!
Yenew, the Dirty Kid, who never fails to dirty herself, be it with the pizza she eats, the water she drinks or the fins she carries;
Topo, the Hungry Kid, who is, well, always hungry and always looking out for food;
Fur, the Greedy Kid, who fantasizes about delicious chicken wings and delicious food in general, especially when squashed in a cab with 5 other kids;
Yen, the Runaway Kid, who disappears as quietly and swiftly as she re-appears;
UU, the Imaginative Kid, who puts pictures into her mind and laughs to herself at her self-conjured imageries;
And last but not least, the Injured Kid, who manages to hurt herself in a short one-hour span of a cable-ski exercise.
She got into a mini-accident with the knee-board when she tried to perform the two-on-a-knee-board stunt with the Runaway Kid.
Now, her right hand still bears two bruises, one the size of a 50-cent coin and the other, the size of a 10-cent coin. Her left thigh spots another bruise about 5cm in diameter.
And together with the some of the other kids, she is also suffering from aching armpits, the result of trying too hard to hold on to the ski rope and fighting (in failure) to stay on to the knee-board.
Topo, Fur, Yen!
Injured Kid, UU, Yenew!
What fun they had!
Be it the cockroach-catching adventure on the ferry ride to Batam;
the cable-ski experience that almost killed everyone, except the Dirty Kid, who smartly volunteered to be the group photographer;
being squashed in Abu Bakar's car, laughing at nothing in particular and re-enacting the CCTV episode;
spoofing the same CCTV episode, with the angry customer, the brainless (according to yen, mei1 you3 nao3 de, haha) waiter and the "free" fruits;
the 2.5-hour spa experience that made them so desensitized to the touch of the masseurs that they thought they'd become flat, airplane runways;
the manicure and pedicure treatment that had the newly-named Ms Way, Ms Falicia, Ms 2 and Ms 3 in stitches and bewilderment, and where Topo had the honor of keeping her identity as Ms Topo, courtesy of Ms Falicia and Ms 2;
the trip back to hotel with all six squashed in a cab again, with Fur stuck in an area less than 25cm-sq, only because they really had to save that 16,350Rupiah, which was in fact THREE SING-DOLLARS!;
the constant reminders that 1,000Rupiah is, in fact, equivalent to 20cents SGD;
the highlight of the trip, where the six kids cruised off in a cruise to watch fireflies, seated in the front-most deck, looking as if they owned the boat -- where they laughed and ate and laughed and ate on the way there, where they stood staring in the dark looking out for the tiny sparkles, where they conjured silly conspiracy theories about how the hotel engaged people to hide in the bushes and act as fireflies, where they played truth-and-dare with the a little boy who claimed he was 19 and in return told him they were 15, where Topo was made to drive the boat, where UU the Imaginative Kid was forced to imagine herself as Rose searching for her Jack; where almost every dare involved the poor, innocent boat-driver Abu Latip (see, I still remember), where the Injured Kid risked getting thrown off the boat by suggesting that the little boy's companion was his mother (when she is, in fact, his sister); where there was food, fun, laughter, and amazement at the beauty of nature, all in a single night..
the visit to the beach, where they played the age-old mi-mi-mi-re-mi-fa-so-mi game with a tad too much enthusiasm;
The three carefree days, where life was only about eating, playing, laughing and sleeping...
Because of the five great companions, the Injured (and Jaded) Kid ate more, in these three days, than what she'd probably eat in five days, and laughed more than she ever did in the past five months...
Now that she's back, she just wants to say "Thank You" to her five companions, and that besides the bruises they had and the pictures they took, this entry is her way of remembering this trip and all the crazy things they talked and laughed about.
Bali next year?
P/S: Did you all realize it is all the "B" places? What comes after Bali? I can only think of Bukit Batok for now.. hahaha.. :p