16-05-2015 Sabah, Malaysia (Borneo jungle)
Never going home – planet earth is my home
The best thing about the questions ‘when does your journey end?’ Is the answer ‘there is no end, I don’t know what’s going to happen next.’ I feel like this journey is for a good purpose, not only for myself, but also to help other people and eventually to prepare myself to help to make the world a bit better. But to the question ‘when are you going back to Holland?’ I do have an answer. The end of May. Yea that’s right, I’m going to Holland the end of May. I’m not staying, I’m just visiting, sorting out some stuff and visiting and cuddling everyone I missed! When I think about that, I’m getting a warm and fuzzy feeling in my belly. I’m really looking forward to that. But on the other hand it also scares me a bit, because I hear all these stories about travelers going back to their country after traveling for a while and then fall into a darkness and even get depressed.
At this moment I’m lying in my pretty blue hammock somewhere in the jungle of Borneo, listening to the sounds of the forrest and a thunderstorm somewhere in the distance. I’m surrounded by all kinds of beautiful trees and because there is a storm coming, the wind blows little flowers from the trees into my hammock. There are a lot of birds and big butterflies around me and also a lot of insects. It’s warm and humid and I smell a combination of trees, flowers and lemongrass from the mosquito repellent I just sprayed myself with. Hmmm one thing I’m not going to miss in Holland, mozzy’s. Yes there are mosquitos in Holland, but not as big and as many as here in Asia and they don’t kill me. That’s probably one of the few things I’m not going to miss. Even my aversion of monkeys is getting less and less. If you want to know why I didn’t like monkeys that much anymore? Read my story called ‘Rocks and monkey’s.’
There are a lot of Makaaks here in Borneo, but they are not used to humans as much as they are in Thailand. I heard they do steel flip flops and I still have to be careful, but after seeing some families of longtail-makaaks and especially the nose-monkeys and Orang Utangs, I’m in love with monkeys again. It’s an amazing experience to see this monkeys in their natural habitat. I’m definitely going to miss the monkeys when I’m in Holland. It’s sad that the piece of rainforest where they live is so small though. It’s a small stroke of forrest along the Kinabatangan, the 560 km river that goes through some national parks, and houses some amazing wildlife. Wow, it almost sounds like a travelblog now. I’m listing up facts about the places I’ve been and what I’ve seen. Well, facts are not my specialty, but the reason I’m writing about this, is to create some awareness. If you drive through Malaysia, but also Thailand, you see a lot of Palmoil plantations. If you don’t know what you are looking at, it just looks like a big collection of palm trees, so a lot of green, beautiful trees everywhere you look. But if you know that to grow this palm trees they had to cut down the rainforest, burn it and make the plantations it’s not that beautiful anymore and actually really disturbing. A palmoil tree is ready to harvest after ten years! The worst thing about it all is that the palmoil trees need so much energy from the sun and the earth, that there is nothing left for other vegetation to grow. So why are there so many Palmoil plantations? Well, just check the products you daily use for the ingredients. Almost all products contain Palmoil. Like cosmetic products, but also processed food. Maybe you’re not conscious about it, even if you try to buy fair products, because there are different names for the palmoil on the list of ingredients on the products.
I ask myself a lot, why is it such a big deal for me that I see how people are destroying the world. I really feel that it’s my mission to save mother earth, to make this world a better place and to preserve the jungle and nature. I feel like there is an end and that we have to turn around our behavior of consuming because this is not sustainable for earth. I like to discuss this subject with people I meet, because I’m struggling a bit with this. I feel like humans are not that important, but we feel like we are the most important organism of the world, so the most important thing is to make sure we survive and don’t go extinct. (As we speak I see a truck with harvested palm oil nuts passing by, which makes me sick and want to punch someone in the face). I don’t see why we humans are more important in this world than for example animals or trees or plants. I think we all need each other in order to survive. We need the trees to make oxygen for us to breathe, we need bees to fertilize flowers in order to grow food. And when I’m talking about food I’m talking about fruit and vegetables. Fair, natural (not processed) food. So nature is important for us, we can not live without and I wouldn’t want to live without. I see the value of the humankind. I see how smart and creative we are and how we can develop and produce beautiful things. I see how people can love. Maybe more than an animal can love. But what I can’t understand is that if humans are so smart, why are we destroying the world for us to live in? Why are we not more careful? Is it greed? Is it ignorance? Is it lack of knowledge? Is it our urge to fit in? Is the urge to grow? All natural instincts to survive? But tell me why are we consuming only 10% of the food we produce? If we all have a natural instinct to survive, why don’t we all feel that we have to be more careful with the earth and mother nature to maintain the human race?
I feel the earth will save itself. Maybe in a different form, but the planet is not going to disappear. Mother nature will take care of earth, there is no doubt about that, but I have the feeling mother nature is fighting back against humans by creating natural disasters which kill millions of people. Off course she doesn’t kill only the people who treat her bad, and it’s still very sad all these ‘innocent’ people die, but I think that’s how she tries to keep the balance on earth. With less people on earth, the chances to survive are bigger. Okay this goes very deep and I know a lot of people don’t agree with me or even think that’s harsh to think, but I don’t really care about that. I do care about other thoughts though, because like I sad, I’m struggling a bit with this subject and I do want to develop a stronger opinion.
During my travels I see how the world is changing. I see how people are building enormous resorts on beautiful islands for greedy destroying tourists. How we are consuming so much processed, packaged food, and there is no solution for processing the plastic waste so people try to burn it or dump it in the ocean or in the forrest. How the tourist agencies encourage tourists to feed reef fish with bread and rice to attract them, if they can’t swim, but without thinking of the consequences for the fish. We are developing too fast, but only for the cause of making money not for survival purposes anymore. Suddenly I’m thinking, a developed country is even worse for humankind than a third world country where people live with nature, in balance and where they’re not destroying mother earth. The funny thing is, I even believe that the people who own less, live a happier life than people with a lot of money. I saw with my own eyes how poor kids in little villages in India had the time of their lives with one simple toy, while spoiled Western kids are hard to please and never satisfied.
Wow, that’s a lot to think about and a lot to process. I went deep today. My message? Just be careful with mother earth, everybody can help her a bit to save the human race on earth. How? Just by being conscious about:
– What you consume. Ask the shop if the products you want to buy contain palm-oil.
– The use of plastic. Take a shopping bag so you don’t need to buy/get a plastic bag every time you go shopping.
– Your shopping behavior. Try not to buy more than you’re using, so you don’t have to throw away food.
I think this is a start and these are things everybody can apply. Even if you’re not ready yet to live on a raw vegan diet and only use organic products and live in an eco-friendly house you can make a difference.
I do look forward to come to Holland the 25th of May and I know I will survive. But please be gentle with me and try to understand that I act a bit strange every now and then and that I’ll complain about the cold a bit. I’ll stay for two months probably and then I’m leaving for India again.
So to my Dutch friends and Family; see you in a week! To the rest: see you someday somewhere on this beautiful planet.