Friday, September 30, 2005
With a couple of hours to spare while waiting for the boat to take us back (due around 11am) it was time for some more fishing from the kelong platform. This time it was the younger set who led the way.
Unfortunately we did not have any luck with the fish. We only encountered a couple of mysterious bites which resulted in snapped lines.
Breakfast was porridge served at the Breakfast lounge (also the dinner lounge)
And it was really good being concocted from a rich gumbo of salted fish, squid, fish and more fish! Surprisingly very tasty.
Even so some more fussy members preferred their staple of pack noodles. (note evidence in the photo above)
As we had some time before breakfast, here are some photos we took of the fish farm section as well as the notorious TOILETS!! Actually the toilets were quite clean - the only feature of note is that of course they emptied directly into the sea below.
After what seemed like a pretty short night, it was already morning. Ma was willing to get up early enough to try to get some art photography in. Not a bad attempt actually.
We also caught a glimpse of a tour ship gliding by in the distance. We also saw 2 more later in the morning when we were making our way back home to Singapore. The straits is apparently quite well used by these boats - although we did not quite managed to figure out what their purpose was to traverse that part of the channel.
After the net raising, it was time to sleep - at least for those under 10 years.
The quarters were quite comfortable and consisted of rooms with curtains for privacy. The beds were just the mattresses.
Some members of the party went on pursuing their activities till much later (the older boys apparently did not sleep that night).
Originally we were told that the main kelong net would only be raised around 1am which was kind of late for the kids.
However, it transpired that the fishermen decided to raise the net at around 11:30pm which was great as it offered us all a chance to observe the catch.
The catch was a bit disappointing as it only consisted of lots of small to medium fish, squid, an octopus ( which slid back into the sea) and lots of puffer fish (which the fishermen left on the side to perish rather than throw them back into the sea as they considered them to be a nuisance).
It merely amounted to about 1 and half pails. This catch by itself was not of commercial value and is ground up and used by the fishermen as fish food for the much larger fish that they were rearing in nets under the kelong.
At around 10:30pm supper was served. Note dinner was at 6pm!!
We were not disappointed. It consisted of sambal fresh fish (some caught by our party), hotdogs, prawns, squid potatoes etc etc. Excellent. Eating on the platform with dark water lapping around us and a constant sea breeze was ..nice...
Dave loved the sambal fish! (and the water melons of course.)Here is what the barbeque area looks like in the day.
After what turned out to be a really sumptuous and over the top (in terms of quantity) dinner, it was again time to relax. A combination of the ever present sea breeze and lack of urban background noise made for an ambience to die for.
But naturally, the tendency to create some noise resulted in the breaking out of the mah jong set. That's what chinese sailors used to do on long sea voyages to pass the time.
Some of us were already getting prepared for...supper barbeque!
Taking it Easy
After the initial excitement of boarding the kelong and observing the catching of our dinner from the fish nets, it was time to relax and take it easy ... and wait for dinner.
Here is what the lounge area of the kelong looks like. Considering we were quite a distance from the nearest shore, the facilities were remarkably sophisticated. And the comfort level was a pleasant surprise.
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
After about 45 mins on the bumboat and after traversing the land reclamation area at Pulau Tekong we finally arrive at the Malaysian Immigration Check Point at Pengerang.
We did encounter some minor confusion at the passport control queuing lanes but we did manage to clear immigration in about 1/2 hr.
Here are some pics at the jetty when we initially landed and the kids were whiling some time away.
Sunday, July 10, 2005
Leaving for the Kelong@ Pasir Gogok
The actual location of the Kelong is at Pasir Gogok near Pengerang, Johor. (see map)
After making final arrangements with the rep of the Kelong, we passed thru immigration and left at about 2pm.
Because the party numbered 17 people, we had to take 2 bumboats as Singapore regulations only permitted a maximum of 12 per boat.
Roland, Yinleng, Kevin, David and William
Swee Wan, Yee Hui and her son and 4 other friends
Robert Chin and family
The boat we took looked like the one in the picture.
The trip consisted of:
Changi Ferry Terminal --> Pengerang Immigration (1 hr +)
Pengerang Immigration --> Pasir Gogok Kelong (15 mins)
The kids enjoyed the ride immensely and were full of anticipation. We passed a kelong on the way and were glad that the small and basic one was not the one we were heading for. It was a smooth ride for all.
At 12:15p the family bundled into the car and we picked up Seok Tuan at her apartment at Neptune Court.
We took a wrong turn and went to the site of the old Changi Jetty. Fortunately this only resulted in a delay of 5 mins or so as the actual Changi Jetty was just the next turn away. Finally arrived at 1:15p.
We were again lucky to be able to find a parking spot at the public open air carpark (at Lor Bekukong) right next to the jetty. The actual jetty is now called Changi Point Ferry Terminal.
Friday, July 08, 2005
Our Trip to a Kelong 3-4 Jul 05
What is a Kelong - Kelongs are offshore fish farms built upon stilts located in the middle of the sea, usually a short distance from the shores.
The fish usually get funnel into the net by the movement of the water, either by general flow or tide.
Fishes are also reared in open nets in the sea and harvested once they've reached maturity.
In addition to traditional fish farming as a livelihood, kelong owners now offer kelong-visit hosting as a supplemental source of income.
Above is a picture of what one looks like.
Our itinerary was:-
Day 1 - 3 Jul 05 Sunday
1.30 pm - Meet at Changi Jetty
2.00 pm - Depart from Changi Village Jetty
4.30 pm - Arrive at Kelong
5.30 pm - Dinner
10.30 pm - Supper
11:30 pm - Raising the net
Day 2 - 4 Jul 05 Mon
8.30 am - Breakfast
9.00 am - Fish Feeding
10.30 am - Depart Kelong
12.00 am - Back at Changi Village Jetty