Chief Editor’s Last Words: Reflections For Recollections

Words by Janice Ng
Photos by Janice Ng, Hamza Delbar and Yeo Li-Sha

Travelling: it leaves you speechless; then turns you into a storyteller.

PhotoGrid_1500271550685The three successive ‘In Search Of’ study trips the author has participated in (from top-bottom): In Search of Yangon 2015, In Search of Vientiane and Luang Prabang 2016 and In Search of Sabah 2017

Has it already been three years, three ‘In Search Of’ (ISO) study trips?

Continue reading “Chief Editor’s Last Words: Reflections For Recollections”


Isn’t She (Mother Nature) Lovely?

Words by Janice Ng
Photos by Janice Ng

Mother Nature.  There is just something naturally alluring about her in the purest form. Lush greeneries. Vast oceans. Majestic mountains. A myriad array of biodiversity – from the tiniest of critters to the largest of creatures. She makes you awestruck and wonder at a Creator who owns the best box of crayons and paints in every shade of hue imaginable. While most definitely nothing beats than embracing its entirety first-hand, Mother Nature is truly a masterpiece of its own when encapsulated in a single photograph. This is evidently seen in the rise of eco-photography and astro-photography lately. However when scrolling through Instagram or any Internet feed, these aesthetically pleasing photographs are usually captured in a land(s) far, far away.

Continue reading “Isn’t She (Mother Nature) Lovely?”

To Stroll, To Gather And To Bond Down Memory Lane at Gaya Street Market

Words by Janice Ng
Photos by Janice Ng and Yeo Li-Sha

As many travel aficionados would repeatedly exclaimed, no trip will be wholly complete without a visit to the local market. As for this author, markets personally resonate and reside a dear place deep within. It is as though they exude a certain wanderlust vibe that she simply adores. The general hustle and bustle, encountering the friendly locals. With any other locales, Sabah also has a distinctive marketplace of its own. A highly must-see lying in the commercial district of the city, it is the Tamu Market, also equally renowned as the Gaya Street Market.

Continue reading “To Stroll, To Gather And To Bond Down Memory Lane at Gaya Street Market”

Celebrating Thanksgiving Day – The Malaysian Borneo Way

Words by Janice Ng
Photos by Yeong Hui Min and Hamza Delbar

Pesta Keaamatan. A term that perhaps rings a (school) bell to most if not all who had endured attended the Malaysian education system, having emblazoned on several school textbooks. This festivity is generally told and portrayed as an annual celebration among the Kadazandusuns in the state of Sabah that lasts for the entire month of May, culminating with a state public holiday on the 30th and 31st May. But what then makes this fascinating observance truly one of its kind beyond a few extra days off the calendar? With that the ISO Sabah team, unexpectedly along with much excitement, set forth to one such Keaamatan festival held in Kampung Kiau Nuluh (the celebration was held later than the conventional date as the organiser of this festival, the Kadazandusun Cultural Association (KDCA) Gompito, decided on the date as then) in search of discovering its underlying significance while experiencing its unique entirety first-hand. Continue reading “Celebrating Thanksgiving Day – The Malaysian Borneo Way”

CLC: Raising Generations For Cultural Preservation and Future Cultivation

Words by Janice Ng
Photos by Hamza Delbar and Yeong Hui Min

During our informative session with Partners of Community Organisations in Sabah (PACOS) Trust, executive director Puan Anne Lasimbang had stressed on the importance of providing quality education for the indigenous community; accrediting it as the organisation’s most effective approach in empowering them to this day. This statement was of strong conviction and resonated deeply with this author. Truly, as the late Nelson Mandela once said, education is the most powerful, life-changing weapon any individual can wield. Bearing frontline prominence of this initiative is the establishment of Community Learning Centres (CLC). This project was instigated by the organisation in 1993 with the purpose to introduce community kindergartens to villages which do not have preschools of their own. When early childhood education begun in primary schools later in 2009, CLCs slightly shifted their target group and catered to children below 4 years old. Continue reading “CLC: Raising Generations For Cultural Preservation and Future Cultivation”



Apa khabar dear readers!

It is with deepest pride and greatest pleasure to welcome you here! You’re looking at the official blog of In Search of Sabah 2017, the thirteenth instalment in the In Search Of study trip series.

Since 2004, the School of Arts & Social Sciences of Monash University Malaysia has been organising annual study trips within and beyond Malaysia based on the following key objectives:

  • To expose participants to some of the social, cultural and political realities of neighbouring ASEAN countries
  • To allow participants the opportunities to hone their observational, writing and journalistic skills in an unfamiliar environment

This year’s travelers will set forth an adventure to someplace closer to home: Sabah, with the noble pursuit of knowledge plus a healthy dose of fun! Fix your gaze on this space for updates over the duration of the trip – from June 27th to July 2nd – as we encapsulate the essence an array of sights and sounds, tastes and smells, throughout our stay.

Meanwhile, do meet and get to know the team by checking out the ‘Travellers’ tab above!

Welcome on board once again and terima kasih for swinging by! Stay tuned and get excited as we #taksabah to discover the Land Below the Wind!

“If I’d learnt one thing from traveling, it was that the way to get things done was to go ahead and do them. Don’t talk about going to Borneo. Book a ticket, get a visa, pack a bag, and it just happens.” – Alex Garland

– Janice Ng Jia Ping, Chief Editor