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Date Posted: 11/15/10

November 12, 2010 - All set for Kota Kinabalu

By: Arturo Valdez

6:10 AM - We are all set to depart for KK, a 65NM distance from Labuan. Everyone well rested, full of chocolates on a "buy 1 take 1 purchase" and greatly enjoyed the hospitality of our OFW's based in this free port. We are all set to sail closer to home, wind is briefly southerly and the waves tolerable. Kota Kinabalu next time.

Yesterday, we were treated and assisted by Debbie and later Rita Fuentes and Lendie Sagelan who buried us with buckets of KFC fried chicken. We would have wanted to make a presentation about the Voyage with the Labuan OFW's but our stop over was only a day and
the Pinoys were not prepared that we will appear in their island suddenly.

9:49 AM - Skies clear with brief southerly breeze. There is a slight swell but traversing the waters of Sabah at this time is the best until the weather changes its mood. A fastcraft swiftly passed along our starboard side coming a little bit closer perhaps for its passengers to take a good shot of the 3 colorfully sailed balangays. Half of the crew are catching sleep after spending a late night in Labuan. Hopefully, we will reach KK Marina before dark. Tenko Adlin is hosting a sumptuous dinner for the crew.

8:13 PM - This morning, I called Sabah Tourism Chief Tenko Adlin that the Balangay Flotilla will reach KK Marina around 3:30PM but the wind shifted to Northeast after lunch and we were also sailing against the current. At 3:00PM we were still 8NM away and there was no way we could make it to KK Marina at that time. Tenko's assistant called that he can only wait until 4:30PM to catch his 5:00PM flight to Penang.

We pushed the boat as fast as we could that at 4:15PM we were 2NM away. As she has always done in the past, Tiririt swung into action and brought me exactly at 4:30PM to the Marina club house to personally thank and say my goodbye to Tenko who graciously arranged our comfortable stay at the KK Marina until noontime Nov 14. He also advised the Marina management to allow us to watch the Pacquiao fight on their cable TV morning of Nov. 14.

Right after the fight we will leave for Kota Belud, a 35NM stop-over on our way to Pulau Banggi. This island in Kudat will be our last stop before crossing Balabac Strait to Palawan. Meanwhile, we have a comfortable stay while waiting for the much awaited fight on Sunday.Thanks to Datuk Tenko Adlin who ensured that the Balangay Flotilla will be well taken
cared as it traverses Malaysian waters.

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