Con job massage and pirated Monopoly

Okay, now I have time to work on my Desaru post! I’m in a bimbotic chirpy mood today cos I’m happy for no reason! I can feel my heart smiling. For no reason!!! So I’m going to make lots of exclamation marks today like this!!!!

I’m kidding. Too many exclamation marks are irritating!!!!!!

Plus it’ll be a bit ironic cos the post I’m setting out to write is full of rants. HAHAHA!

Okay nevermind we’ll see how it goes.

We did an impromptu trip to Desaru last weekend. Me and Nanny Wen, the Goonfather and Unker Kell. Well, okay it wasn’t that impromptu. We planned it like two days before.

The road trip was as fun as all our past road trips have been. We had cushions and stuffies this time!

Road trip to Desaru

In the car, Nanny Wen was busy BB-ing away, so I decided to camwhore myself.

But she, being a consummate camwhore and multi-tasker, will abruptly abandon her Blackberry and stick her face into frame, every time her peripheral vision catches sight of a camera about to take a shot, never mind the camera wasn’t planning on capturing her.

That’s why you can only see half her face, cos I was aiming at myself when she stuck her head in! LOL!

We booked rooms at The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort because the Goonfather said it’s the best and biggest in Desaru, being the first resort to be listed in Google.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort


Well, okay, maybe it IS the best. I wouldn’t know because I’ve never visited the others. I might never find out.

The first thing that greeted us after we parked at the open-air carpark was Thomas the Train!

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

Damn cute lah! But we didn’t get to sit in him cos we didn’t sign up for any resort activities.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

My first impression of the resort was okay. It was spacious and the decor was decent and everything was neat and tidy. But I had a feeling it was, like, old and dusty, as if nobody had stepped in the place for a long time.

When we first checked in, we didn’t see anyone else (except the staff lah).

Our room, although large and seemingly clean, smelled old and musty.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

But we had a great view!!

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

Beyond the swimming pool is the beach.

I took an obligatory camwhore shot on the balcony while Nanny Wen took a moment in the bathroom.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

It was around noon. We were waiting for the boys to settle into their room and then tell us what they wanted to do next. So we went to bed while waiting.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

Then we received a call. The Goonfather said he wanted to go to the beach, so we changed into our beach wear!

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

HAH. No bikini pics for you!

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

The pool:

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

We each get a towel card to exchange for towels. If we lose a towel, we have to pay RM50!! Crazy lah daylight robbery. Who wanna steal your lousy towels anyway!

The beach:

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

The water was a bit murky cos of the rainy season. But the waves were nice! NO ONE ELSE AT THE BEACH.

We’d only been there for two minutes when it started to drizzle. Hahahaha so loserish.

Nanny Wen and I hid under a shelter while the Goonfather and Unker Kell went to sit at the shore to let the waves hit them. They ended up with pants full of sand.

They finally gave up the beach for some reason and went back to the pool, where the two of them spent 20 minutes showering at the public shower, trying to get rid of all the sand without stripping.

Nanny Wen tried to get a tan but the sun kept alternating with the drizzle.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

You can see the rain clouds gathering!

Another 10 minutes or so and we totally gave up and went back indoors.

It was an epic phail.

Before heading back, though, we made a small detour to the resort’s mini farm, which turned out to be a small chicken coop plus a cage with, like, three bunnies. Hahaha.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

With nothing else to do, we went to the resort spa and booked a two-hour package each, consisting of 1 hour massage and 1 hour scrub.

It was a total rip-off! It was RM180 each but it was so bad I expect them to pay me money to compensate!

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

Firstly, the massage wasn’t very enjoyable. My masseuse didn’t hit any right spots and she kind of glossed over everywhere quickly. Not only that, because we were in a couple room, the two masseuse kept chatting.

I didn’t mind the chatting because they were speaking in low voices. But at times, she would suddenly concentrate on chatting and STOP MASSAGING for like half a minute! Very unprofessional.

And there was one time she stopped in the middle of massaging my shoulder and disappeared for five minutes.

I don’t think they did a full hour because, very quickly, the massage was over and they started on the scrub.

She said, “I leave the scrub on you for seven minutes to dry, then I’ll come back later to scrub it off.”

The scrub beads were cold and I was shivering the whole time I was waiting, even though covered in blankets.

I estimate that we waited at least 30 minutes before the two of them came back, giggling, to massage the scrub away.


Once again, they left us shivering with cold for 30 minutes before coming back again, giggling.

It was the most horrible scrub experience in my entire life!! Okay, not that I go to scrubs a lot. I’ve only done it twice in Batam and I think once in Singapore. The Batam one was so awesome I fell asleep.

After the scrub was done, as we were freezing, they slathered ice cold yoghurt all over us (to soothe and moisturise the skin). Nanny Wen and I shrieked in tandem each time the yoghurt splashed onto a sensitive area.

Once our whole body received the yoghurt treatment, we were able to rush to the bathroom to wash off and hopefully get some warmth back into our shivering bones.


And the shower was a small drizzle when turned to hot. And hot wasn’t even hot. It was warm. The shower was horrible and there was only one bathroom for us to share.

At the end of the ordeal, I didn’t feel relaxed at all. Bah.

We visited a nearby fruit farm after the massage! It somewhat saved the day.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

Giant jackfruit!!

But we didn’t get to see the actual farm. I think you have to book a tour for that. We only had access to the store, which sold fruits, tidbits and souvenirs.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

After the visit, I was forced to play Monopoly with the guys at the resort lobby. WHYYYYYYYY?!

The Monopoly set provided by the resort looked pirated!!

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

By the time we finished our game, it was, like, 8 pm and time for dinner. We were starving so decided not to drive out to search for food. We went for the BBQ Buffet at the resort’s restaurant.

It cost RM65 per person and the food was bad.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

It looks decent but when you start biting into things, everything is bland. Even the sauces provided are weird.

Only the satay was good. And the satay sauce.

Unker Kell asked, “Can I eat RM65 worth of satay?”

The answer was no, because the satay (only chicken and beef) kept getting snapped up really fast.

And the bread and butter pudding looks like this:

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

Small piece of it:

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

You probably think it’s nice because it looks edible in the photo, thanks to my kind photography and the cute dollop of custard on it.

But bread and butter pudding is not supposed to be like that!! You can actually taste the bread, which tastes just like bread straight off the loaf!

Anyway, we tried to fill ourselves with the satay, and then Nanny Wen and I retired to our rooms early while the boys stayed in the lobby to enjoy the complimentary movie at the lounge, played on a dodgy projector screen.

And that was when the real trouble started.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

After staying in the room for an hour, I realised that the tip of my throat was feeling very itchy and irritated, and my eyes were almost watering and feeling strained (like it feels when you have fever fatigue). I thought I was coming down with something because I had only slept two hours the night before, and very little the nights before that.

Two hours later, when it became really uncomfortable and I started sneezing, I realised that I was getting an allergic reaction to the oldness of the room. You can’t see or feel the dust, but my body was reacting to something.

I didn’t think of it earlier because I seldom go to dusty places where the allergy will act up.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

But I finally remembered the time when I was filming at this rented HDB flat. Nobdy had stayed in there for ages, so it was musty and dusty. For weeks, I suffered exactly the same thing I felt that night in Desaru.

I also get it sometimes when spring cleaning for Chinese New Year.

That horrible itch and irritation, fitful sneezing and watery, tired eyes. My lungs also felt irritated from the stale air I was breathing in.

I was planning to blog that night since there was so much time, but feeling the way I felt, I just wanted to curl up and pass out.

Anyway, the night passed. I read myself to sleep.

The three of them went to the the beach the next morning while I slept in, because I don’t like getting a tan. After that, I joined them for breakfast at the same place we had the horrible dinner.

Breakfast was complimentary.

And it was actually edible!

Well, I suppose you can’t go very wrong with toast and eggs!

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

The soft-boiled egg was a bit of a failure but maybe this is how Malaysians eat soft-boiled eggs. I don’t know.

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

BUT I LOVE IT. I love too-cooked soft-boiled eggs!

There was also nasi lemak and it was good.

This was Unker Kell’s original selection:

The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort

Nasi lemak with potato wedges and fried egg. No sambal!

When we pointed out the lack of sambal, he was, like, “YAH HOR, HOW COME I DIDN’T TAKE SAMBAL.”


And that ended our very quick vacation because Unker Kell had to be back in Singapore by noon to attend his grandmother’s birthday party.

We ended up reaching Singapore around 3 pm or 4 pm, delayed because we made a stop at the fruit farm for more fruits and tidbits to bring home, and then at JB for lunch. Haha.


Anyway, despite the dodginess of the resort, I enjoyed myself because, as always, it’s the company that counts!

Batam Trip: Lazy adults become children

It was early in the morning. Everyone was shuffling about the house like zombies, trying to wake up and wash up so we could all make it in time for our complimentary hotel breakfast.

I was messing about absent-mindedly when one of the girls suddenly burst into my room and said, “QY! QY! Come and see the bag carrier!!”

I stared at her with a sleepy narrow eye and yawned at her. “What the hell is a bag carrier?”

“Unker Kell! WAHAHAHAHAHA! Come and see!”

So I lumbered into the other room and this was what I saw.

We spent a good minute laughing at the sight of a sleeping Kell being used by Elyxia as a toiletries bag holder while she prepared herself.

With eight people sharing two bathrooms and all half-dead from lack of sleep, it was a miracle we managed to not miss breakfast. We made it there at 8:30 am, one hour before closing. Breakfast was at the huge kelong restaurant, overlooking the sea.

The food was quite limited and tasteless but we had a great view and great company so that kinda made up for it.

After breakfast, while walking back to our villa, not really knowing what we were going to do next, we sauntered past the playground and turned into children.

The seesaw was the favourite attraction that day. But I never liked the seesaw (nor the swing) even as a kid. I just don’t like my body being forcefully propelled in any direction but natural forward.

But it’s okay if I’m just fooling around and not using them as intended.

Guess who was supporting all of us…

And what happened when he got up.

Then, Elyxia discovered that the seesaw could be used for wakeboarding practice.

For some time, the guys stood around her, giving her pointers and encouragement. And then, suddenly, they realised that I was hiding in a little house taking photos of them. Lolololol.

My hiding spot:

Anyway, everyone was too lazy to go out and just wanted to hang around and do nothing, so we spent the whole day at the resort.

One of the attractions in KTM Resort is the giant kwan yin.

It’s really huge. Can you see me and Minou at the foot of the sculpture?

A little background about it:

By the way, we could see Singapore from our villa. We could even see the Singapore Flyer clearly, but it’s too small to see in this photo.

We spent the rest of the day at the jacuzzi pool. Except me. Because of a multitude of reasons. So while the others were having a raucous time in the pool, I was hiding in a pavillion beside the pool, blogging.

It’s a sea salt water jaccuzi pool which drops off into a lagoon. There are rocks one can sit on at the edge. From my angle, it looked almost like they were sitting on water.

I mentioned before that the pool was dirty, but with the debris fished out and jacuzzi turned on, it looked decently inviting.

According to my friends, the jacuzzi is VERY strong.

When we met for dinner that night back in Singapore, one of them punched Morte, who didn’t go to Batam wih us, forcefully in the arm and said, “That’s how strong the jet is.”

And the entire pool was surrounded by jacuzzi jets.

My delinquent friends even made a game of it. Somehow, they managed to acquire a swimming float and they would assign one “monkey” to sit on it. The rest would hang on to the float around the “monkey” and then they would let the jacuzzi jets drive them around the pool.

The idea was to capsize the monkey while not being pushed off the float by the strong jets. The last survivor would become the “monkey” next.

Or something like that. I’m sure I got it wrong somewhere but I’m confused because the Goonfather and Minou told me different versions of the game. lol.

Anyhow, they spent like two hours playing this game, making a lot of noise and attracting a lot of attention in the process.

That was our second day in Batam, spending the whole day in the playground and the pool, playing kiddy games.

We had ice cream, too! Paddle Pop pirate ice cream!

I’ve been trying to find it in Singapore but I can’t. =(

So you know what that means? I need to go back to Batam again, soon. I might even try out the jacuzzi pool next time.

Batam Trip: Strange caterpillar, treacherous stairs, dirty pool

I don’t like resorts. I don’t like the sea. I don’t like massages. I don’t like getting wet. But I had such a grand time in Batam over the weekend, I think I could be persuaded to change my mind.

It was a last-minute thing. We only decided on the trip two weeks before and managed to find a date to accommodate most of us. Only Morte couldn’t make it because he’s in a new job and didn’t want to take leave.

That was a shame because Morte is our club president (some say mascot) and we really missed having someone to club.

Club Morte

We met at Harbourfront at 9 am on Friday to have breakfast and wait for the ferry, which was crazy because we were all terribly sleep-deprived after a week of gaming and partying.

The first photo I took that day was when we arrived at Batam.

The moment we cleared immigration, the smokers zipped off to buy cheap cigarettes while others wandered off goodness knows where. Minou and I were the first to greet our hotel transfer.

The next photos I took were of the “scenery” while our mini van drove us up a hill to our resort.

For a while, I kept seeing people squatting at the side of the road at random spots. Some were in small groups while others were alone within long stretches of maybe a couple hundred metres. They didn’t look like workers. They just looked like normal people squatting in the middle of a deserted hill trail for kicks.

We checked into KTM Resort, a humble beachfront resort which looks more like a kelong because part of the resort hangs over the sea. And there wasn’t really much of a beach.

The restaurant is huge, like a kelong seafood restaurant. In this picture below, it occupies the entire platform in the background:

While Kerr and Minou were checking in, the rest of us wandered around and camwhored.

We decided to share a two-bedroom villa. All seven of us. Haha.

We thought it would be more fun. And it was, although it’s a little hard to sleep when there’s free surround sound snoring.

The sitting room:

The master bedroom:

The other bedroom:

The perimeter:

The balcony:

The views from the balcony:

Very modest living arrangements, but nice enough. I love how there are many connected log paths and stairways in each villa compound. Gives a kind of adventure feel to the area.

We found a very unusual caterpillar.

Its coat looked like suede, almost velvet. Some of us wanted to touch it but no one dared. It looked poisonous. And it just sat there, unmoving.

We left it alone and tried not to step on it.

Here’s the stairway that leads down to the main lobby compound from our villa:

It’s very steep!

The second half of the stairway:

Looks like it was carved off a giant tree. Very treacherous!

There’s a sea salt water jacuzzi pool at the base of our villa but it looked sad and dirty on Friday. We only found out the next day that they only clean it out and turn on the jacuzzi during weekends (or by request).

After everyone had had a chance to settle down and do some cursory exploration, we crowded onto the balcony to split our amassed fortune.

Damn smokers. Always littering my photographs with their damn cigarette packs.

Lounging at the balcony was nice. It was windy and I’d only had two hours’ sleep the night before. I felt like just sitting there for the rest of the day.

But we had stuff to do! We had to eat lunch, shop for snacks, go for a massage, then have dinner!

Kerr arranged for a mini van and driver to take us around for the day.

Our land transportation for the two days, including hotel transfer, only cost S$90, which came up to S$12.80 each.

Okay, this post is getting too long and I still have tons of photos, so I’m going to continue tomorrow.

I should stop taking so many photographs. I had actually planned to have minimal photographs, just enough to record a few highlights of the trip because I wanted to rest and relax!

But I ended up taking more than 300 photos. After deleting no-goods, I still have 245 photos.

This is one of the NGs I decided to keep after all:

I decided it’s quite funny. I was posing for a wide-shot photo between three villas (ref. 10th photo from top) when the Goonfather sneaked up behind me and gave me a scare by suddenly grabbing me by the waist.

Hrmm, okay. That’s all for today. I need to go complete my Penny Arcade Adventures: On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness, Episode Two. Bye!