Saturday, July 4, 2009

Amanda's perspective-I Am NOT a Jungle Girl

*Again, this is a guest blog, so these are the views of Amanda and not Elaine.

We started out the morning with a relaxing boat ride over to Taman Negara. We were filled with excitement. Little did I know what would be in store for me that day. We went up steps to the canopy walkway. I was extremely nervous since it involved walking across narrow bridges suspended in the air. Heights are not my thing. The bridges swayed as you walked across. I clung to the ropes that acted as handrails, which was considerably more difficult since I was shaking with fear. I was especially disturbed when I found out that we would do this without a harness. I was proud that despite the Czech man who constantly told me how scared and petrified I looked that I made it through the entire canopy walk and this time, I have pictures to prove it. What I later found out, was that the canopy walk was actually the easy part.

Right after the canopy walk, we stopped at a vine and everyone took a turn trying to climb it. Elaine climbed up the highest. Afterwards she confessed that she just wanted to show up those ballet dancers. I got a turn too, but with my twig arms I didn’t make it very far. I much prefer things that do not involve exercise.

We began trekking up the trail in the rainforest. At first I thought about what a great experience this was going to be. I was walking around in a beautiful, noisy rainforest teeming with life in Asia. After several more sets of stairs, I began to become annoyed. The stairs were so tall, even for me. It became so much work. Later, we had to use the roots of trees as our stairs. When we finally stopped at a scenic viewpoint I felt such relief to know that I was done. Unfortunately, this was not the case, I was informed that actually there was more walking to get to the top, but it was easy and flat and would only take about 10 minutes.

So, we continued on. At the sight of the first set of steps that I was told wouldn’t exist on this part of the trail, I was beside myself. It was all I could do to keep myself from bursting into tears. I was tired and hot. I was so sweaty that I was actually leaning over and ringing my hair out to stop the sweat from dripping down my back. I decided that crying would make me feel better, but it probably wouldn’t be a good idea to lose any more water than necessary since I had already drank my two water bottles and I was in the process of sweating them all out. Elaine kept telling me it would be worth it when we saw the view at the top. As we arrived at the top, I found a bench and plopped down. I was so relieved. I refused to get up and go to the edge to look at the view. I was disappointed, exhausted and unhappy. I have to say that treacherous hike was so NOT worth it to see that view. I was miserable. All I wanted to do was crawl up in a ball after a hot shower and cry myself to sleep in a nice bed. However, that was not meant to be. I still had to hike back. I took a cold shower under a small trickle of water and passed out for a 3 hour nap on a small, uncomfortable bed with an A/C that was, at best, inefficient. It was not an exciting adventure, nor was it fun. I am glad I did it, but I am sure I will probably never do it again. I was couldn’t wait to head back to KL the next morning. I am NOT jungle girl.

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