Plan the trip as well as you can is the responsible thing to do. However, to expect that everything will go the way you planned it is reckless.
Before you even start packing, one should plan the trip. When planning, try to envision every moment from the time you step out of your house to the moment you step back in. I did my due diligence and even went so far as to make an Excel sheet of all the details that I would think would be pertinent to the trip. Unfortunately, things do fuck up – despite all the planning you’ve done – and when that happens, you should be willing to roll with the damn punches.
For my second and third days in Kota Kinabalu, I was hit pretty hard. First, although I read everything that I thought I would need to know about Poring, I ended up spending MYR 17 more for the transportation to get to the actual stop. Part of this journey was spent wondering how the hell we would be walking the last 15km towards the spring. During this particular mishap, I met a friend. She was a fellow Filipina, travelling with her friends but she decided to go to Poring on her own while her friends stayed behind in the city. Like me, she was interested in viewing the canopy – and maybe try the hot spring. I, on the other hand, wanted to stay two nights in Poring then just travel back to Kota Kinabalu to catch my flight.
Before leaving the city, I had an inkling that I should get my money changed so that I would have extra cash to spend – just in case! – but I thought against it because I wanted to control how I would be spending my money. So, long story short, I ended up spending twice more than what I would have spent if I booked the exorbitantly priced canopy and hot spring tour than in “trying to find my own way there”. Then again, I was able to spend an inordinate amount of time in the hot spring, a luxury that the tour groups just did not have.
Still, though, I would have been able to minimize my spending if only I did not expect that everything would happen according to how I envisioned it would. By my third day, I already spent about two-thirds of the funds that I set aside for the first part of my trip in Indonesia.
Do I regret making these mistakes? Well, as far as mistakes go, I don’t think anyone would not feel even a little bit of regret for having made the wrong choice. However, I decided to stick with the cliché of learning from your mistakes. In order to celebrate that which makes us most human is to embrace our flaws and follies. It’s ok not to be perfect. It’s ok not to have made the right call at that time. It’s ok.
And I guess, I really just needed to know that. Perhaps forgive myself. But, more importantly, forgive others.
As per usual, I am adding a few unsatisfactory photos from those days below.