Monday, 23 April 2012

Oh No, Not Again.. Kota Kinabalu April 22nd 2012

Oh no, not again...Pollution

Another foray onto the beach today, the only beach considered part of KK accessible by bus. It's the bus that goes to Tanjung Aru from the station outside a shopping mall on the southern edge of the city, only 1.5RM. The beach is actually at TG Aru, a coastal suburb that is mostly residential, although there is one resort hotel located up on the peninsular, towards the city. About 30 minutes and most of the passengers disembark here at the beach cafe. Its noticeably cooler, much windier with quite a rough sea - dark clouds on the horizon too. Right is north towards the city and left is towards the south and the airport.

Quite a few more people this time, unsurprising for a weekend I suppose, and several swimmers enjoying the nice blue sea. Blue sea here, close to shore but in the distance there seems to be a dramatic change of colour to light brown. I've seen this before, but a closer look is required to confirm my suspicions. A hike south then, towards the runway with those passenger jets getting significantly closer. Sea defences of granite boulders start where the beach finishes and continues for more or less the entire length of the runway. It's a muddy track for the most part, between the airport fence and the boulders, then the sea. And as I suspected, sadly a sea of pollution. That brown sludge is like an oil slick, and it seems to be heading for the shore line. Lapping onto the boulders, contaminated water with garbage floating around. Well, seen enough of this, better start back since it looks like rain anytime now. Spits and spots turn into a drizzle then steady rain and strengthening wind. Looks like a frontal system passing through. I noticed an upturned boat tied to a tree earlier, better head for that. A bunch of chickens taking shelter scatter as I move in. Nothing to do but wait, and in the meantime try not to upset that dog skulking around.

Rain eases, sky a little brighter so a good time to make haste and get to the cafe before the next rain belt I can see heading this way. Looking back at the slick, a contrast of colours - turquoise, brown and dark gray. It has a defined edge to it now and seems to be encroaching further towards the swimmers, yes, even in the rain they are still enjoying a good splash around!

It's a typical beach cafe and if it wasn't for the staff, could be somewhere in England. Coffee is that premixed stuff, milk powder and sugar included. I send it back and ask for Nescafé. The only milk is the condensed tinned variety, or of course that sweetened thick treacle like substance. Food seems to be everything and anything processed or from a packet to be reheated - the only consultation is its all priced appropriately.

A trek along the north beach now the rain has stopped. It's refreshingly cool, probably unseasonably to a local. Plenty of garbage this end, a combination of washed up and strewn, I would say. Haven't seen any tourists here, well, a couple earlier, but that's it. Very much a place for locals, huddled in a circle as a column of smoke rises. I suppose a weekend of BBQs is going to equal garbage, as Asians are not too good at cleanliness when it comes to beaches. The KK yacht club is here, maybe a tad too rough today though. A lowly windsurfer on the horizon, as the tide recedes, quite a long way actually. It's a wide open beach, rather nice to sit on the log, no ants to bother me either! Locals are beginning to gather as the sun starts to set, but I need to get back since I don't want to miss the last bus, and face a  90 minute hike.

Lots of locals gathered on the promenade watching a rather stunning sunset. It seems to be a ritual, might well be thinking about it. I'll try to find out later. The promenade close to the bus station appears to be a hangout for the smart, sleek and chic trend setters in KK, on a Sunday evening.

No comments:

Post a Comment