Monthly Archives: April 2015

Angelic colors in Maiga Island

Heading straight-on to Maiga Island

Heading straight-on to Maiga Island

Perfect natural light … perfect cloud … perfect wind … perfect weather … ahhh just speechless!

I couldn’t ask for more. Great companion as always … photographers from Brunei, Singapore, Kota Kinabalu and Kuala Lumpur … mostly are strangers turned companions. We shoot like a mad soldier with infinity bullets 😉 . I was surrounded by non stop camera shutter sound from my left and right side, it makes me feel  inferior lol … like I am not working hard enough accumulating my own stock photos …. argh! bunch of pro photographers. And … in 2 days, I accumulated more than 1000 images from my “crazy! memory space eater” D800/ D800E 😉

And, great food too as our host Muslianshah bin Masrie is not only a great photographer but he turned out to be a darn good cook too. I couldn’t complaint more … why should you complaint when your belly is full, right? *wink*

Maiga Island under the sun

Approaching the island

View from one of the jetty here in Maiga Island

View from one of the jetty here in Maiga Island

The other side of Maiga Island

Stunning landscape here … sun, sky and cloud overload

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My addiction with clouds continue here

Photographer’s heaven …!! <— I know! I need to stop ranting and start writing instead.

Maiga Island is just a small remote tropical island. No hotels, no facilities … just a few simple and humble homes owned by the island people from Suluk and Pala’u (Bajau Laut) descent. Typical Sabahan hospitality… playful, friendly and polite. So, I would like to remind you … that you need to have an adventurous soul to be able to see and enjoy the beauty of this place.

We shared their homes for 2 nights and we hang around with their children during our sunsets and sunrises. You would probably feel a bit curious …  about the safety issues surrounding this area especially after the major security breached incident regarding foreign intruders last year. Well, it felt safe when we were there … and I saw groups of China tourist wandering freely around some small islands there too.  Well … there is always a RISK in everything that we do, right?

Sunset here at Maiga Island. The downside of having cloud overloads is ...

Sunset here at Maiga Island. The downside of having cloud overload is … my round yellow “egg yolk” sun … ended up playing peek-a-boo with me

Catching the last color of the day at Maiga Island. Yeah ... I admit , another boat as my foreground ...

Catching the last color of the day at Maiga Island. Yeah … I admit , another boat as my foreground

The curfew hours from 6pm to 6am is still on-going though … so, no island hoping activities at night for us. Just some relaxing and frustrating milky-way night shoot … and this is due to the cloud overload activities that continue during night time too.

Milky-way attempt at Maiga Island

Milky-way attempt at Maiga Island

And, this is how my sunrise look like:

Morning light peeping  out from the nearby island

Morning light peeping out from the nearby island

Children doing their routine jump at the jetty during my sunrise moment

Children doing their routine jump at the jetty during my sunrise moment

Bohey Dulang Island

A gorgeous fisheye view of the Bohey Dulang Island

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Island children playing with their small boats

Island children with their routine jump at the jetty

Island children with their routine jump at the jetty

I made some new friends here too, Patricia, Azmal and Chinta.

Regardless of whatever or whoever our background is … human is still human and children will always be children. Most of the children here are without proper nationality and ‘politically’ they don’t entitled to experience school (… sarcastically saying). With no proper education, most of them can’t read or write but they are not slacking on their manners. Well mannered children that makes my heart nervous … thinking of their future.

This is Chinta with her audience

This is Chinta with her audience

The boy with a lollipop is Azmal. My diplomatic little tour guide ... I paid him to guide me around the island

The boy with a lollipop in his mouth is Azmal. My diplomatic little tour guide … I paid him to guide me around the island

Playing with my sea gypsy friends

Playing with my sea gypsy friends

Me and you moment

Me and you moment

Chinta … is not her real name, her real name is so difficult to remember so I just called her Chinta lol. She is a great story teller and a very imaginative child too. Whenever she started telling her stories …. the rest of the children would definitely be glued to her … including me, an adult child he he he.

I had a hormone imbalance moment when it was time for me to depart from the island. I had dust in my eyes whenever I look them in their eyes … especially towards Azmal, Chinta and Patricia. It felt like leaving your own child alone at a strange and dangerous roadside. Emotional attachment in 2 1/2 days … I am definitely getting older … or is it an early menopause sign? … emo 🙂

Wefie moment with my island friends

Wefie moment with my island friends

May Allah grant them protection, peace of mind, guidance and remain in his guidance always. And, may Allah grant a continuos resources, energy and time for me to travel and learn more from life … ameen.

“Do they not travel through the land, so that their hearts (and minds) may thus learn wisdom and their ears may thus learn to hear? Truly it is not their eyes that are blind, but their hearts which are in their chests” (22:Al-Hajj:46)

I pressed published before  before checking on my post ... lol ... and missed this photo. A child playing with her swing ...

The joy of witnessing life:  A child playing with her swing … love it!

And as at today, my traveling schedule for the next few months is still remained empty. I am planning to stay glued at home … editing photos, updating my photo portfolio, generating money to finance my next travel project and working on GayaIzzah.com. Wish me luck yea …

Cheers

MM

 

p/s If you plan to visit here, I would suggest you to bring some gifts for the children. Children clothing or swimming goggles or pens/ pencils or simple reading books or books for writing. Or you can spent some moments with them, reading for the children or just playing “tag you’re it” game with them. Sharing is caring …

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Strange colors in Sabtang Island

Batanes Island: View from my balcony

Batanes Island: View from my hotel balcony

Ahhh … a fantasy island indeed.

The weather was unpredictable during our stay in Batanes Island, Philippines last week. Strong wind, cloudy sky and scattered rain here and there … had made my hunting (for lights and colors) more challenging than usual but experiencing the “heaven on earth” kinda landscape that surround the island  … has lighten up my heavy heart. The crispy clean air had magically chase away my stubborn Indian cough that had been ‘lovingly’ sticking to my throat for weeks (after completing 2 courses of antibiotic the cough still linger).

The island is so spacious … empty hills and mountains with only green grass field and a few here and there trees. It entice the feeling of flying in me … the wanderer me riding the wind while exploring the hills surrounding the island lol.

More photos of Batanes Island from my D800 will be uploaded to my Zenfolio photo profiles soon.

Spacious Batanes ...

Free flying with just the wind … no glider and no paramotor engine needed here

After a few days being surrounded by the gloomy weather, we decided to take a short boat ride to the nearby  Sabtang Island (30-45 minutes boat ride away). A small island with estimated around 1800 people and they are economically depending on the sea (most are fisherman).  We refused to be at the mercy of the weather. Hunger for light and colors … we were all over the place … exploring the island until there were no more light left on the horizon.

At 2pm: We arrived at the Sabtang port

At 2pm: We arrived at the Sabtang port

At 3:15 pm: San Vicente Ferrer Church (Sabtang)

At 3:15 pm: Some maintenance work at San Vicente Ferrer Church

We spent our afternoon looking for the perfect spot to shot sunset at the not so nearby (about one our ride on an open-style truck) fishing village. The weather at Sabtang Island was not as bad as it was in Batanes Island … so we were expecting a nice sunset that afternoon.

For those who love to shot people or streets, Batanes and Sabtang Island is obviously not for you. As for me, I adore beautiful landscape but I need subjects on my landscape … and these islands are so secluded that you need to be extra creative to be able to capture the gorgeous view with your camera.

Internet connection in Batanes Island is super duper weak … but my life has never been depending much on the wifi connection anyway … so, it was not a big deal to me (how I wish). But it is getting harder for me lately to stay isolated from the internet. This past few months GayaIzzah.com needs more TLC (tender, love and care) from me … I know, I need to get used to working hmmm and less playing.

Being an introvert, staying disconnected from such need towards creating extra noise for attention is always my ultimate goal. So … I think that I am sucks at updating GayaIzzah.com fb and IG status everyday … just to create a scene or a viral so that my lovely GayaIzzah.com would get more and more followers. Hmmm … tough job!

Yup … so I was telling you about the closed to zero internet connection in both Batanes and Sabtang islands (especially in Sabtang) right? It was heaven to me … so quiet and peaceful … I was not complaining at all … but my customer did lol. One of the many reasons why I love traveling … is because it is so quiet when you are out there alone.

At 3:45 pm: Spotted a secluded beach on our way to the fishing village

Another side view of the scluded beach

At 3.47 pm: Still here for a quick shot around the secluded beach

So, we were hanging out at the village enjoying the afternoon breeze, waiting and praying for a colorful sunset. It was kinda cool hanging around with the villagers while watching fishermen unloading their catch of the day to the shore.

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At 4:30 pm: We hang around the fishing village

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At 4.30pm: Fishermen loading up their catch of the day

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At 4:30pm: Hanging around the beach while the fisherman uploading their catch of the day

At 4:30pm: Looking at dried fish at the hanger facing the sea

At 4:30pm: Dried fish at the hanger facing the sea

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At 4:30pm: Still hanging around here waiting for sunset

At 5:30pm: Still walking around the village looking for moment

At 5:00pm: Still walking around the village hunting for moment

Dried fish hanged along the village

At 5:45pm: Enjoying sunset at the village

Sunset at Sabtang Island

At 5:45pm: Sunset at Sabtang Island

I have a few more interesting shots of the sunset in Sabtang that I would probably upload it to my Zenfolio photo profile later. It was a very interesting afternoon indeed.  We were lucky to have a clear sky that night … so, our next target for the night was … hunting for milky way.

At 4:00 am: Practicing my seeking a signal skill

At 4:00 am: Practicing my seeking a signal skill

At 4:00 am: Still practicing my seeking a signal skill

At 4:00 am: Still practicing my seeking a signal skill

At 4:30am: Hunting for the gorgeous milky way

At 4:30am: Hunting for a gorgeous milky way

AT 5:40am: Watching the first morning light

AT 5:40am: Watching the first morning light on the shore

At

At 6:20am: Enjoying morning light

At 6:30am:

At 6:30am: With my warm and lovely friend … an unexpected companion

At 6:45 am:

At 6:45 am: Still here with my companion … i like him! a great companion!

I met all kind of unexpected warm souls while traveling. Souls that warm my heart … and this new companion that I met in Sabtang is one of a kind soul. If I can have a dog of my own … I want this type of dog. He accompanied me during my early morning shot, he followed me everywhere during my sunrise moment, he lead my way around the bushes on the hills, he sat with me on top of the hill and he accompanied me while I was enjoying my golden light moment … darn! my yellow grumpy cat at home doesn’t do that … gosh! I want a dog … I bet if I have a companion dog like him … I can wander alone, confidently around beaches and bushes in Malaysia taking pictures of beautiful local landscape … I need a dog!

But … with Malaysian crime rate hiking up day to day … I think I will need a bulldog as my companion dog 😛

At 5:50am: Trying to catch the morning light behind the cloudy horizon

At 5:50am: Trying to catch the morning light behind the cloudy horizon

Honestly, I felt a bit discontented with this trip … reason being that the unpredictable weather had made it hard for me to experience the true light and the genuine color of Batanes Island. Too bad huh… but who knows one day I might have a chance to visit Batanes again.

I am preparing myself for my next trip to Maiga Island in Semporna, Sabah on Thursday next week. More landscape and milky ways to feed my D800 lol. Wish me luck ….

Cheers

MM

 

p/s Dada Macusi … in case if you are reading this. I will make it a point to call you up next time if I happen to visit Philippines again, there are so many places to explore there …and chasing whales in Babuyan Island sounds so cool 😛 . Take care …


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