Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Missing In Jungle (森林惊魂记)

Maiden jungle is a dangerous place for novice and expert alike for every journey into the jungle is not the same even one follows the exact route each time. Thick tropical forests are dark, damp and very difficult to move about with many inherent dangers. That, of course cannot deter the brave ones. However, there is a sure sign that one should not venture into the jungle for veteran or novice the like: when the forest looks foggy or as if covered by a blanket of thick fog.


As I have said previously there are many taboos or the locals like to call them ‘pantang larang’ before entering the jungle for example:


·         One should not bring pork related products into the jungle

·         One should not call real names

·         One should not urinate simply before first expressing apology to the spirits

·         One should not plug any strange looking or beautiful plants

·         Etc.


More on taboos:



My friend, Ahmad lost his way in once familiar Maxwell Hill after cutting down a piece of thick rattan. He went round and round the hill but couldn’t find his way out and strangely after he threw away the rattan, the route in front of him suddenly cleared almost instantly. By the time he walked out of Maxwell Hill it was already after Maghrib time (7pm).


I had similar experience when I ascended a forest near Cameron Highlands hunting for herbs. I went up the hill following a mud path at around 9 o’clock in the morning and as I thought it was a piece of cake as the path was quite straight; a path junction appeared in front of me. Somehow I have chosen to go straight as it led to uphill and I thought that was the way to go.


As I walked further uphill the woods become thicker and when I looked at my watch, it was already 3pm and I still couldn’t find the herbs I were looking for. At that time, I only had a pair of scissors and a bottle of mineral water with me. Naturally, I began to feel panic.


At the same time, a huge tree beside me suddenly toppled giving out a big bang and almost instantly; sounds of tigers howling coupled with the hissing of snakes echoed around me. To tell you the truth, that had really made me pissed in my pants! What else? I just took an about turn, ran and ran until the hell broke loose.


I am not sure if it was the luck on my side, or the piss that had done the magic; I finally reached the base of the hill where I parked my car. My friends who waited beside my car told me that they almost gave up hope waiting for me and if I had not appeared sooner, they would lodge a police report for good!


From that experience onwards, I seldom venture alone into any jungle without fully prepared myself.

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