Saturday, September 13, 2008

Calling all nature lovers Part 2

The saga continues...

Tossing and turning in the sleeping bag under the dark starry night with still, warm tropical air all around you was one of my biggest challenges during my first-ever camping experience. I admit that I do feel a teeny-wheeny bit of envy as I see many people armed with air mattresses, electrical fans, etc et al. Some purists might heap on the scorns when they see those amenities but I was wishing and praying like mad that an insomniac like me could fall asleep with the most rudimentary sleeping gear. I guess being slightly tired helps but it was a dreamless sleep as I woke up early the next morning after overcoming the snoring symphony.

I emerged out of my camp to join the breakfast crowd as we planned our hike for the day. The entire entourage was to stampede, uh, i mean, trek to Takah Tinggi, the biggest waterfall in the area which was about 4 km away. I was in a much better shape than the day before as I was no longer sedated and was very eager to go. We walked along the 'road' before going into the jungle proper for a good, leisurely hike along the serene path with many wooden or cable bridges along the way. Some of the photobugs stopped periodically to snap picture of the mushrooms, flowers, leaves, etc while other trudged on. I couldn't indulge in my photo-taking mode due to my limited batteries. Sigh..I should be better prepared...serve me right!

The moment we arrived at the amazingly huge fall with a big pool, I was mesmerized by the rocks formation in the centre of the fall. I clambered over the rocks quickly to catch the direct view of the cascades. Then, thud and plop! The cilipadi had just become a wet vegetable as I slipped and fell into the cold water in my full climbing gear. As I emerged unhurt and very much refreshed, there was laughters all round as everyone is amused by someone who reportedly has a good sense of balance from rollerblading but was the first person to fall in. Haha...

Caught a lot of insects in action..including butterflies sticking to the salt/mineral areas near the fall and some fauna (forgotten the phyllum) sucking blood from people, including yours truly's gluteus maximus. Yup, i nearly got a naughty leech up my posterior end but manage to catch it in time. Yucks rite? But alls' well that ends well :-)

After that, it was all fun in the cold, slightly greenish and totally chlorine-free water as we frolicked under the warm sunlight. The joyful morning passed by very quickly as we emerged from the swim to partake in a fish-roe/avocado/cheese dip crackers courtesy of the multitalented,kind and nice Rose. Nice picnic indeed.

The hike back to camp was uneventful and quick as we saw rain approaching. Wanted to do river-tubing but it was raining and so we chilled out under the trees on hammocks and chatted while preparing another big dinner. Dinner was one long, delicious affair that was better than a lot of my regular meals in D.C. Of course, the last night won't be complete without some Chinese tea (!), classy wine, zesty tequila and brandy huh? Conversations flowed by easily as we enjoyed the cool, post-rain night on little stools courtesy of Mr Wong and gang.

Alas, it was time to sleep and then wake up the last day for the drive back to KL. Kudos to Kaynis for the excellent organization and I really enjoyed the entire trip. It was also brilliant getting to know and spending time with all the people, esp my car-mates (Su Yin, my sis and Rose). Looking forward to the next trip yeah?

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