Up through smaller villages and our first hills, the friendliness continues to do humanity proud: a Christian lady bought our dinner before we knew it, and kindly arranged for us to camp at the Chinese Buddhist Temple, where a refreshing shower was incredible, she talked to us about rubber tapping from the type of trees we had camped amougst the night before, and how the price of rubber has sadly plummeted. The folk at the temple were kind and lovely.
We later also had the pleasure of meeting Alan who was back in his home town, on holiday from his normal residence in Surbiton! He introduced us to a new breakfast – noodle soup – at his sister’s restaurant the next day.
We cycled on that morning where the most fierce stoker saddlesore caused tears to flow (those bibs will not be worn again!), it was the hottest day yet as we’d luckily had cloud cover until now, the mosquitos were relentless during breaks, and a man with a gun turned up to ensure we weren’t robbers after we’d pulled off by a palm plantation to avoid the midday sun. It was definitely my least favourite morning so far! but things quickly improved after changing, the pain stayed away, and the afternoon then held some of the best cycling yet.
Later a kind man on an interesting bicycle (which had a heavy motorbike chain) overheard us telling an inquisitive drunk man we were looking for somewhere to stay, so beckoned us to follow him and we wound through the streets, until eventually his family and many sweet happy neighbours found us a gem of a room. We were then due for some rest for our tender backsides and muscles, so had a short ride the next day to Bentong – a town of delicious bakery buns and cakes – and just pottered around, posted some more unneeded things home, purchased a horn (essential apparently) and some Marmite (essential mosquito repellant of course!), ate well, and are both looking forward to getting back on the bike tomorrow. Onwards and upwards!