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Paradise on Pulau Perhentian
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Barbie on the beach

To quite a Stef phrase “eh, it’s a hard life this life of a world traveller” (his other favourite phrase is "Not sure we can put this on expenses for the BBC"). Today’s “hard life” was a prime example. We got up, had breakfast, donned our beach gear put up the parasol over our sun loungers and spent the day on the beach. Probably one of the most energetic things we did all day was to move our bags from our garden view room to a new one with a view over the beach!

That’s not to say we simply lazed about all day. We went for a swim a couple of times, and wandered down to the local beach front café for a spot of lunch but most of the day we spent relaxing, reading or playing cards. There is a really refreshing breeze here so you do not get too hot during the day. We both spent the day sitting in the shade so we would not burn but even so still picked up colour while we swam.

In the evening we headed back to our little beach front café for dinner watching as the tide came ever closer. They have sandbags piled up two high to stop the water coming into the café but it would have been fun to sit with feet being cooled by the sea as we ate. After dinner we strolled down the beach under the light of the stars (and a few buildings!) dodging the volleyball net and anchor chains as we went.

The night sky here is fabulous. With little light pollution you can see thousands of stars but as usual we could only identify a few. While we were eating we watched a thunderstorm across the bay on the mainland. Huge flashes of thunder lit up the clouds over land, seeming to come closer and closer to us. As we walked along the bay, the storm also seemed to be coming round the headland in front of us. Where we saw bright stars one minute, clouds obscured them the next with lightning flashes streaking across the sky at an increasing rate. The storm never hit our little part of the world though.

Even at night the sea was lovely and warm as we paddled up and down the beach. In some places you have no choice but to paddle as the beach is narrow and when the tide is in it is submerged. If you wanted to play volleyball at night half of the “court” was under an inch or two of water. Back at our hotel we sat in the bar drinking expensive Tiger beer (about £1.50 a can) and playing gin rummy which ended up in us having a later night than we have done in ages. It was just a really relaxing place to be. I suspect that if we had not already booked our train tickets south and had more time we could quite happily stay here for a few more days.

Ah, it’s a hard life!