Tanjung Puting National Park – Day 5

Tanjung Puting National Park Day 5 Title Pic

8th November 2011

Tanjung Puting National Park – Day 5

Woke early, as usual, and watched the hornbills flying around. They were too quick to get a photo of but it was amazing to just sit and watch them. And I continued to watch them as I had my breakfast of coffee and omelette, and daydreamed about what the day ahead may bring.

We went to the 9am feeding time but it was fairly quiet…mind you, this is a good thing! I should mention that if orangutans are not coming to eat fruit at the specified feeding times then this means that the orangutans are finding food for themselves and they are less reliant on human assistance…this is a positive thing! 🙂

Nanang, one of the dominant male orangutans, was there and a few other orangutans were hanging high up in the trees. We stayed for quite a long time and then slowly headed back to the klotok.

Tanjung Puting National Park Day 5 Pic Collage

We continued upstream and went to the Village ‘Sei Sekonyer‘, a village that had been fighting for land rights for some time. This village had been moved from the right side of the river to the left, so that it was out of the National Park boundaries, and now it was losing land to Palm Oil plantations. Sad state of affairs.

I went wandering around the village, it was quite a small village with, I was told, a population of 300 people. It was interesting to see the big signs and banners protesting the palm oil plantations. I even saw palm oil plants in pots!

Tanjung Puting National Park Day 5 Sei Sekonyer Pic Collage

We walked from one end of the village to the other, it was super hot, almost unbearable…and sure to rain again! But we wandered around nonetheless…saw the school and the ‘Pondok Belajar‘ {Learning Centre} …it was very cute and had painted on the outside…“Human need forest… forest need orangutan”

After we had pretty much walked around the whole village, we headed back to the klotok, and just in time as it started to pour rain! We hung out at the dock for a little while, while we waited for the rain to ease slightly and then we started our journey back to Kumai.

As we came out of the river and headed towards the port at Kumai…I saw the saddest sight…and couldn’t quite beleieve what I was seeing…right at the end of this amazing adventure to Tanjung Puting National Park! And it was to be my last memory of the end of my journey into the jungle…the klotok in front of us dumped all of its rubbish in the water! Three big plastic bags full of rubbish! Just threw them off the back of the klotok, like it was the normal thing to do! What were they thinking…?! All the reports that the forests and the orangutans will disappear within the next century – are possibly true! Especially if the locals continue to treat their own backyard like a rubbish dump! My heart dropped…

I finally arrived back on land…it was a bit of a relief! I decided to check into the most expensive hotel in Pangkalan Bun…the ‘Blue Kecubung Hotel’ and I checked myself into a Deluxe room…very nice! The room was like full luxury to me, especially after five days of living on a klotok in the jungle!  I had all the mod-cons…air-con, big TV, huge big bed, hot water and even a bath!

The plan for the night…long, hot bubble bath, room service {kway tiew with Thai prawns!} and some Indo TV! And a super good sleep! 🙂

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