I was up at 4-30 this morning to drop Mark at the train station to begin his journey to Borneo for what will be the last of his research and commitments for his current project. We were both there, almost this time last year, for nearly 3 weeks and we had a fab time.
Of course the fact that I was enveloped in a warm, sultry heat for the entire time, helped make me feel alive and provided me with a much needed hit for my tropical nostalgia. Kota Kinabablu was a fantastic starting point, it provided the right blend of Asian sights, smells, sincerity and succulent food.
The famous night food market, that suddenly appears like a shimmering mirage on the port at dusk was such an exciting place to wander through, soaking up the smells of the BBQ's and grills on which all sorts of seafood, chicken and the most amazing vegetables are grilled, steamed and fried.
Both Mark and I were salivating, walking around trying to decide on what to have. I settled for grilled fish - straight off the coals with an egg plant dish that tasted like no other I have ever had. Doused in plenty of soy, chilli and sweet sauce we enjoyed our meal under the tents, inhaling the food smells of the markets, listening to the unrelenting banter of the traders and looking out to the twinkling lights on the few fishing boats moored in the harbour.
I can picture you there Mark, in a few days, sampling the chicken wings and kebabs but please remember to stay away from the Udung galah!!