5th November 2011
Tanjung Puting National Park – Day 2
I woke really early in the morning, I’d had a restless sleep…heard strange noises in the night and imagined that there were Proboscis monkeys climbing onto the klotok! Do you think my imagination may have been working over time during my first night sleeping on an open deck of a boat in the middle of the jungle..??? Hmmm…thank goodness it’s a new day on my journey on a klotok in the jungles of Tanjung Puting National Park – Day 2!Breakfast was at 6am – omelette and home made chips…and I actually enjoyed it and ate most of it! (I don’t usually eat breakfast and definitely not at that early hour of the morning!)
By 7am we were heading down the river again. We skipped the second camp and headed deep into the jungle to Camp Leakey. When we turned the corner into Tanjung Puting, the water changed from this murky, dirty brown to this pure clear colour (that almost appearer black), and which if the sunlight shone on the right spot, it almost appeared to be red! The reflections of the trees were so beautiful!
We headed to the dock at Camp Leakey and it was there that I first saw the cutest, little orangutan…Percy! Percy is 9 – 10 years old and has grown up in and around the camp. Percy became my favourite orangutan in Tanjung Puting National Park. And I spent a lot of time watching Percy…she was very entertaining! She had the cutest, naughtiest little face! Oh, how I adore her!
We walked along the long wooden boardwalk, which was over the swamps and went for a walk through the camp and into the jungle. I spotted a ‘kancil’ – a mouse deer – I was pretty excited about this! I had spend many years teaching young children about the folktales of ‘Si Kancil‘ and his adventures in the jungles of Indonesia…and now finally I got to see one! Pretty cool! Of course he scurried away pretty quickly and I watched him disappear into the thick jungle.
We then spotted an orangutan hanging high in a tree, right above where we were walking. We stopped to chat to her, and she just reached out her hand and firstly held my hand and then she grabbed my finger and gently pulled on it! It was so sweet…it was AMAZING! She was gentle and sweet!
We did a pretty long walk through the jungle and it felt good to be out there in nature working up a sweat! We went back to the dock, to the klotok for lunch – yummy fish again and perkedel jagung (corn fritters) – another of my favourites! I love my chef/captain! Seems like he knows all my favs!
After lunch, I had planned to have a short siesta but this wasn’t going to happen…as Percy was extremely busy trying to work out different ways of sneaking onto our klotok! She was trying to go between the two klotoks at the dock (ours and another) and trying to get on! So naughty…but so cute and funny!
About 2pm, we headed into the jungle again, we were heading to the 3pm feeding time. And there were only 2 other tourists and me! The first orangutan to come to the feeding station was Siwi – a big, dominant female and right after her was Tom, the big dominant male! He was HUGE and SCARY! He sat with his back to us and ate the bananas. Tom decided to walk right out of the feeding area and towards all of us that were sitting/standing nearby! We were all scared, even the guides looked scared! Tom used one hand to easily lift up and roll this huge log onto the pathway. I guess he was showing everyone who is boss. I moved away fast! I had goosebumps, I was so scared! After Tom had gone, it took three guides to move that log (more like a huge tree trunk!) back to its original spot! Wow! The strength of the male, dominant orangutan is scary!!!
A few other female orangutans came and they had cute little babies. One was so tiny and had the cutest face and spikey hair, I couldn’t stop taking photos of it!
There was also ‘babi human‘ (wild pigs) and ‘ayam human’ (wild chicken/bush turkey?). Oh and there was also a very cool ‘tumai‘ (squirrel) – big and colourful! I had never seen anything like it in my whole life! We were there for a long time before we headed back to the camp.
At the camp, I met Princess and her little baby. The orangutans are all so cute and unique…it is a very special experience! We hung out with Princess for a while… Then as we walked back to the long board walk, which lead back to the dock and my klotok, along the boardwalk there were a lot of small monkeys! So glad that they were frightened away before I got near them! (Past trauma from being bitten by a monkey years a go in Pangandaran, West Java! That’s another story!)
Back on the klotok…the captain arrived by speedboat with a new battery for the generator…this was good news but alas there was yet another drama with the shower, this time the shower hose broke and water just sprayed everywhere, which made it almost impossible to wash properly! You have to laugh! Another lovely dinner and another early night! The captain kindly left me an oil lamp hanging from the roof of the boat, so I had a dim light for the night. 😉