The Orang Asli Of The Gold Coast

Me and Alex tried to enter Pantai Cunang beach in Tanjung Sepat and found the sandy track accessible to only motorcycles. While looking at the map, we saw an Orang Asli Village (indigenous or aboriginal people) nearby. Further reading revealed they are of the Mah Meri tribe and many are fishing people like the town folk.

Not too long ago, I met a Chinese man in Morib who is married to an Orang Asli woman with a daughter in tow (inset). When the woman told me she is Mah Meri, I instinctively asked if she is from Carey Island. They told me they are from Sungai Pelek near Tanjung Sepat. Thanks to the friendly chat with the couple, I found out there are many interracial marriages between Orang Asli and the Chinese farmers in the area.

According to them there is a big Orang Asli community in Sungi Pelek and the modern Orang Asli town has a fried chicken outlet in the middle now, as I was to discover later. Sad. Hehe.

Sungai Pelek has a checkered history with British Field Marshal Sir Gerald Templer accusing the residents of supporting communist insurgents at one time and the town’s pig farming industry was tragically wiped out by the JE virus epidemic in 1989. The town is back on its feet.

I hope this Orang Asli family by the roadside near Cunang Beach were not walking back from Sungai Pelek. It is quite a distance by foot.

#tanjungsepat #orangasli #mahmeri #goldcoast #sungaipelek #rural #smalltown

The Old Jetty In Tanjung Sepat, 10 Years Ago.

Love the power of social media networking. My long time Instagram follower @jaschintaz sent me an old pic of her wedding day at the old jetty in Tanjung Sepat, 10 years ago! What a sweet couple, weren’t they? Her husband CS is a native of the town. If you remember, I mentioned that the old jetty collapsed. See how charming the old jetty was albeit being quite rickety then. Thanks Jas for sharing. Now my story about the new and old jetties is complete. See my earlier post about the new jetty titled “Time And Tide Wait For No Man Or Woman”.

#tanjungsepat #jetty #fishing #sea #smalltown #selangor #landscape #pier #wedding #tbt

Time And Tide Wait For No Man or Woman

Time And Tide Wait For No Man or Woman.

At the seaside of Tanjung Sepat, the rustic old wooden jetty was gone, to my surprise and disappointment.

It is being replaced by a 300m long, RM 3.2 million modern pier jutting out into the Straits Of Malacca. It had little character from a photographer’s standpoint. It was reported that the frail old wooden one collapsed. I did feel nervous when I walked on it previously.

Time and tide wait for no man or woman with a camera. I suppose progress, change and modernization are inevitable. There may be dark clouds ahead though, both metaphorically and visually as captured with irony by this pic. I think the gloomy sky represents sadness too.

I was told that the home grown industry is on the decline. As with many small towns, many youths left their hometown to seek better prospects elsewhere. No one can stop the march of time.

Panasonic Lumix GM-1, ISO 200, f22, 1/250 sec.

#tanjungsepat #jetty #fishing #sea #smalltown #selangor #landscape #sky #clouds #pier

Generic Main Street, Fishing Village.

We drove into this street in Tanjung Sepat by accident. It was very long and is flanked by wooden shops on both sides. My first reaction was “I have only seen such long streets in Cambodia” Alex who recently returned from Cambodia. nodded his head in agreement.

I think it was the seemingly endless Charles de Gaulle Boulevard in Phnom Penh Cty that I rode a motorbike on. Could be another, It was confusing. No romantic colonial name here though. Just plain vanilla Jalan Besar – a common or generic Main Street name in many small towns in his country.

It was the main street of the village, I suppose. Now the village has grown into a town via other parts. Tip: I could still retrospectively find the street name as I captured a shop’s signboard with a name alone. Googling the grocery shop led to an address.

Fascinating that you can buy just about anything under the sun at one of the shops here. There were also temples and churches. Unlike Cambodia, bikers without helmets zoomed about here like many villages in Malaysia.

Photography Tip: Shooting through a car’s front windscreen can destroy the camera’s white balance. The colour balance will be altered by subtle factory glass tinting not visible or apparent to our eyes as we get used to it after a while. A little post processing can fix it usually.

Panasonic Lumix GM-1, ISO 200, f16, 1/250 sec.

#smalltown #village #mainstreet #tanjungsepat #landscape #cambodia #streetphotography #street #road #rural

Travel Partners Make Or Break Your Travel

At Tanjung Sepat, I wanted to get shots of fishing nets and related paraphernalia since we were in a fishing town. Alex Wong MF, my helper and driver for that day was extremely accommodating in his willingness to help me get to places we both weren’t familiar.

Can’t stress enough of the importance of a travel partner who share the same vision and who is understanding and flexible. Am grateful for the shots I got and can’t thank this kind, generous and patient man enough.

We found a house which we think was manufacturing fish traps or cages. I told Alex I needed to get the dilapidated house behind and Alex understood my intention.

As with any travel, don’t be too serious about everything. Keep it light hearted and fun. Both are seeing things never before experienced when exploring a new place.

Travel is about observing and noting things together for impromptu discussions.

For example; we laughed when we saw a new housing estate there. Every Chinese house had a massive, shiny stainless steel gate and a pair of stainless water tanks on the roof. A sign of the new rich or a status symbol, perhaps.

In the 80s and before, Chinese families aspired to migrate to Australia when they became rich. Now it is a fetish like passion for acquiring stainless steel or chrome ornaments.

If you think you may also be a suitable adventure or roadtrip mate and would like to learn more about photography or to have a few chuckles together at the same time, please contact me.

Thanks, Alex for making it a fun, productive and memorable trip

#tanjungsepat #travel #adventure #streetphotography #fishing #landscape #roadtrip