Typical: Misog and co saw four orang-utans in the tree on their morning cruise, on the cruise that nobody else went on, but at least we all knew we were going to see them at the Sepilok Rehabilitation Centre later on.
Breakfast wasn't too Malaysian today, as we even had shredded potato. Arkin appeared after breakfast with a birthday pancake for Lonna and we all sang to her: like a good girl I sang along too and smiled, but then the owner appeared with a rattan bracelet and ring for her. As I looked around the room at my fellow travellers and Sue, it was clear how I felt, even saying 'well isn't that a kick in the teeth', as I'd not had a birthday pancake with candles on it! Of course in true foot-in-mouth fashion a bracelet then appeared for both Sue and me. Oops. The orange dye came off on our arms, but it was the thought that counted, even if it was an afterthought!
After nearly three days at the camp I learnt I could have been having free Milo instead of boring tea and coffee every day, yet another kick. We set off back to the bus on our boats, and bid the jungle farewell, and then all bought ice-creams at the local shop when we saw Arkin happily chomping away at one.
We drove another three hours to the Sepilok centre, and loaded up with insect repellent before heading off to watch a video on the orang-utans and look at an exhibition on them. There was a feeding platform where we all watched them, but only two turned up, both with babies; as the monkeys tried to take the bananas they were promptly thumped on the head and fingers by the orang-utans, which was quite amusing. This was a time when one of those huge cameras would have been useful, as my little camera didn't pick up too much detail, but at least I saw them. There weren't any pictures of me holding one though, so nothing to match the lion picture from back in Africa.
A sign requested silence at all times, so our group was, but the swarms of Asian tourists weren't, it was only when I was speaking after the monkeys and orang-utans had gone that the guards decided to step in and tell me off.
After showering and a sneaky beer we set off to the bus for a ride into Sandakan, where we walked past a night market to a Chinese place. We all ordered and ate our mediocre meals, whilst staring at a strange fountain that didn't seem to have a source, before discovering Arkin and Maoi hadn't eaten because they were going to pick at the night market, something we would all have happily done. We were all a little annoyed, but headed through the market and to a bar compliantly. The bar turned out to be extortionate, and quite possibly a strip bar, as there were pictures of girls with prices next to them.
We went to the supermarket instead, picking up Carlsberg and for some reason Guinness. Kathryn was excited to have a roti before driving back to camp, where we pulled out our beers in the bar. Everyone had gone to bed so we sat undercover as the rain poured, thinking we'd sit until it passed - it passed at 1.a.m. I tried to drink my Guinness without much success, and after the Carlsberg decided to try the Danish girls' rum and coke mixture, which tasted exactly like rum chocolate balls. At the end of the night only Kim, the Danish girls, the German, and me remained, although the German was on his laptop looking up football scores so he stayed at the bar. We went back to mine and Nanna's room, where we had a cheeky whinge about some of the other people on tour, but mostly Misog who had gone straight to bed when we got back, and was rude to the waitress at the restaurant.
We'd stupidly left on the air conditioning whilst at the bar, and our room was subsequently freezing, and then left it on again overnight, meaning we were both shivering all night, but neither of us was willing to get up and turn the fan off. I blame the beer and rum for impeding our judgment.