We are sat in the middle of nowhere (Jerantut) in another internet cafe, killing time before our bus leaves for Kuala Lumpur later on today.
On our last night in the cameron highlands we went out for a traditional malay curry and some beers with our trekking companions. It wasnt quite like rusholme though - all courses of the meal are served together on a bannana leaf, which you are then supposed to eat with your fingers. After what our trek guide from the previous day had told us about all the ways you can die from having plant residue from the jungle on your hands though, me and campbell decided to use spoons!!
The last 2 nights we have been staying at Kuala Tahan on the edge of Taman Negara national park. During another entertaining bus journey we had to stop to wait for wild cows and then a melee of monkeys to clear the road. On our first night we had dinner on a floating restaurant on the river that separates the village from the park itself, which was an experience as every time a river crossing boat (the only way to cross the river) went past the whole restaurant bobbed up and down. For the day that we were there we got up early and crossed the river to go trekking in the rainforest. Even at 8.00 in the morning it was unbearably hot and humid. I have never sweated so much in my life and it took about 10 gallons of water to rehydrate!! I still dont think campbell has been to the toilet again yet!! Still, the rainforest itself was amazing. The first place we went to has a canopy walkway - a 500m long swaying bridge made from aluminium ladders bound by rope, supported at 20-60m intervals by 250 year old tualang trees. The bridges are 30m above the ground, very narrow, and sway quite a lot when you walk on them (mum this would be your worst nightmare!!). You have to stay 5m apart at all times, and only a limited number of people are allowed on the walkway at any one time. However, as we were the first people there for the day (before it had even officially opened!) we were able to take in the view and enjoy looking down on the forest from above. Next we trekked up to the top of a nearby hill which gave us some good views over neighbouring valleys before descending to follow the river back to the river crossing. Unfortunately we saw no monkeys, tigers or elephants. However, we did see a wild pig, some massive ants and a whole world of other insects!
As our rough guide had warned us about the abundance of leeches within the rainforest we both spent the day looking like a couple of muppets with our trousers tucked in to our socks and t-shirts fully tucked in. This did not stop one little blighter from finding its way in to my shoe and gorging itself on my tasty blood! I only discovered it when we got back to our cabin, where my ankle continued to bleed for about 2 hours!!