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Bunaken, Indonesia

***I had to make this photos very small to get them uploaded, which is unfortunate because they have lost a lot of quality in the process and I had to remove many of ones containing expertly hidden fish.  Take a moment to look closely at them as there may be hidden treasures you don’t notice…

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Bunaken Photos

Pulau Bunaken is a small island off the Northeast coast of the Sulawesi, Indonesia.  We’re here for only one reason – to dive!  The sea here is rich with life and has especially incredible corals.  So far we’ve done nine dives but will be doing a few more before we head to the Lembeh Strait. …

Many Monkeys and 1 Monchichi!!

Welcome to the jungle baby!! Arriving in Bukit Lawang (Boo-keet Lu-wang) after a very long travel day, we were snagged up by a local guide who promptly guided us off the bus, to a a hotel room, and into a jungle trek package. We signed on to leave bright and early the next morning for…

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Orangutans in Bukit Lawang

Orangutans are critically endangered. Their biggest threat is the ever growing palm oil industry. Palm oil is used in countless products, in fact is very hard to avoid even when conscientiously trying to. To grow palm oil large tracts of land are cleared, by logging or often by burning, and replaced with palm trees. These trees…

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Banda Aceh

Banda Aceh definitely deserves its own post.  Banda Aceh was the epicenter of of the earthquake that caused the 2004 Boxing Day Sunami – killing over 300,000 people.  Aceh took about 80,000 casualties, roughly 5 of every 6 people. Driving through the area now you’d hardly know anything happened here.  Besides the odd concrete skeleton,…

North Sumatra

We’re still in Pulau Weh for one more day.  Next we’re off to search for Orangutans in Gunung Leusur National Park and then back “home” to Kuala Lumpur. Two days ago we did the best dive of our lives at Batee Takong.  To start we dropped to 45m (160 feet) to witness larger sea fans…

Safe, Sound, and Happy

Hey Everyone, The internet has been a bit dodgy.  We were completely unaffected by the Earthquakes near Padang, and equally unaffected by the earthquake and subsequent Tsunami in American Somoa – which were over 600 and many thousands of miles away respectively. We completed our PADI Rescue Diver Certification last week – which means we…

It’s official….

Well, we did it! We are officially Advanced Open Water Divers. The class was not super challenging but we got a lot of good information out of it and (of course) a chance to do some awesome diving. The fish life here is so diverse that we see new types of fish everytime we are…

Pulau Weh

Finally we made it to Pulau Weh… It took a bit of work but we’ve been able to relax for the last four days.  We are in Pulau Weh, which is a small remote island off the Northwestern tip of Indonesia, just off Indonesia’s largest island of Sumatra.  To get here you must go through…

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Batu Caves

We started our day today with lamb, chicken, and pork in a variety of delicious sauces at an Indian restaurant next door to our guesthouse.  We also had an orange soda (a symbol that we’re really on vacation), tea, and a bottle of water.  It cost us 15 ringgit – about 4 US dollars. Full…

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Val Goes Bald

I’m in Asia…..finally!! Yeah. I have made some attempts to post sooner but the Internet apparently hates me in Malaysia. I was lucky enough to get to spend some time with many of my family members, take some photos, and make some new memories of home before taking the amazingly long series of plane rides to get here….

Landing in a Jet Plane

Guess what? We’re in Malaysia! After 27 hours we finally have a room booked in the “Little India” district of Kuala Lumpur. Everything went pretty smooth, with the hardest part being the LAX grind and getting onto our first flight. The Hong Kong airport is a marvel in itself, it’s by far the most modern and nicest…

Leavin’ on a Jet Plane

Today is the day. In a few hours we’ll get on a plane to fly 15.5 hours and 7,254 miles to Hong Kong, then another 4 hours and 1,559 miles to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. We’ve had an awesome week in California with Val’s family and friends. We’ve gorged ourselves on In & Out Burgers, California…

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