Someone pinch me. Am I really on the island of Sumatra? I keep dreaming that I back at home going to potlucks, it’s gotten to this weird place where my reality is more exciting than my dreams. I’m not flaunting anything when I say this, what I’m saying is that there is part of me that doesn’t feel like me without some of that day in day out type of life, it’s strange but in some ways we need the routine, something about being habitual beings. Anyways who wants to hear about all that, you all are here reading this because you wish you were on the island of Sumatra and not living your day in day out habitual routine and the guy giving you some escape from that is talking about wanting to be in your boring life….shoot, my blog stats are plummeting I better get to the Jungle trek part.**
Our guide’s name is Endra and you can find him at Mama Nora’s hotel also known as the Rainforest Inn in Bukit Lawang. This is the first time I’ve ever given travel beta just because he was a really cool guide a real sincere guy with a great sense of humor and I wouldn’t want anyone to miss a chance to meet him. Plus Mama Nora is a great cook she makes an amazing pumpkin curry. Ok so Endra leads us out of the village in to “the jungle”. The Gurung Luser National Park is one of the last of two places in the World where you can see wild orang utans or “man of the woods”. In the first day we saw a total of nine and got chased by one. As we go deeper into “the jungle” however the sightings lessen as it turns out that many have learned to feed off of the many tourists that just enter the beginnings of the park, a sad reality for any animal lovers. Still seeing an orangutan in the (pseudo) wild is one of the most amazing things one could hope to experience. The rest of the trek was phenomenal and lead us through narrow shoots up steep cliffs and down slippery slopes everything was draped in vines and laden with thorns, there are more plant species found on one tree than maybe all of the plants found in the state of Arizona put together. All of this was in stark contrast to our last week spent in the huge city of Singapore surrounded by shopping malls and chain restaurants. We spent three days camping in the “the jungle” and got out by tubing down class 3 rapids for an hour and a half dropping us right at Big Noras for banana coconut shakes. We got sucked by leeches, held millipedes as thick as my thumb, ate ants for acidity, saw fresh tiger prints, caught fresh catfish, and slept likes rocks on a rock. Ultimately we fell in love with the Sumatra forest and have now dubbed it one of the most magical forests left in our known world. We walk out baffled at the worlds we live in and truly grateful for being given such a rich experience. Thank you Jesus.
**This is probably something that belongs on my other blog but what I’m saying is that our time traveling is teaching us to be content no matter where our circumstances lead us, because believe it or not we really are craving that routine life. So please note the sarcasm when I say “boring lives” because what we’re finding is that there is just as much beauty to be found in boring suburbia as there is in all-of-the world combined. Henri Nouwen said it best when he said that he tries to live nowhere, which when broken down is now and here. Wherever nowhere is for you is where the color and the life is, its just a matter of opening our eyes sometimes. For us nowhere happens to be Sumatra but next month it will be a van in the desert, so there you have it.