Rice Paddy, Buffalo Farm and Rubber Plantation - 6th May 2015

A very good friend of ours is a Psychiatrist and he told us that a lot of people when they retire go through a grieving process much like one does when someone close to you dies. The reason behind this is that people grieve the loss of the sense of purpose that employment gives.

Many go from being an important person in a business to being a “Nobody”.  Now instead of being driven by a sense of purpose they drift like a rudderless ship on the ocean of life.  If one feels this grief the answer is simple. Pick yourself up, abandon old restraints and embrace the rest of your life with gusto.  Learn to look forward, not back, and start doing things that you have never done before. Not everyone can “Sell up, Pack Up and Take Off" but there are many other wonderful experiences out there waiting for those that dare. Humans thrive on challenges and change so if you are retired get out there and enjoy this new episode in the story of your life!

First thing this morning we visited a Rice Paddy attraction near our hotel. It had a fascinating museum of rice and paddy’s that you could walk around with rice at various stages of growth. We were amused by a Scarecrow clad in Muslim attire in one paddy.

Rice Paddy

Rice Paddy

Muslim Scarecrow

Muslim Scarecrow

One of our favourite entrees is fresh Buffalo Mozzarella, prosciutto or pancetta, fresh figs, Basil leaves a drizzle of Balsamic reduction and a touch of extra virgin olive oil. We have learnt of a Buffalo farm on Langkawi that makes Buffalo Mozzarella so we plan to check it out today. Just returned from The Langkawi Buffalo Park. It is situated inland from the Airport and to get there we passed small villages and many small houses on this basically dead flat inner part of the island.

Erica patting baby buffalo

Erica patting baby buffalo

Our lunch

Our lunch

On arrival we inspected the herd housed in an intensive system. Erica had a great time talking to them, feeding and patting them and it took us back to our zoo days when we had our own herd of 8. Enjoyed the smells and sounds. Being a Zookeeper never leaves you.

Lunched on fresh Buffalo Mozzarella on tomato and it was yummy but not as tasty as Erica’s recipe. You can’t get much fresher than eating cheese while looking at the producer!

Fresh rubber

Fresh rubber

Rubber harvester

Rubber harvester

Stopped at a rubber plantation and watched a young man packing up his rubber haul to sell. First time we had seen raw rubber like this and it was very smelly. Unfortunately the rubber price is only half what it was a year ago. Langkawi’s main crops are rubber and rice and all is sold through the government.

A house away from the coast here costs as little as 70,000RM or about$25,000 Australian. Compare that to the price along Cenang Beach where a resort changed hands last year for 18 Million RM or about $6.45M Australian.

Langkawi has a population of around 65,000; 90% of which are native Malays. Kuah, its largest town, has population of 11,000 and it only has one Government Hospital. Its main source of revenue appears to be tourism for the under 40. These facts make it a very unlikely place for an expat to relocate to so we will spend the next 2 days continuing to be tourists!