Be prepared to sweat, get wet and dirty. This is the way to enjoy a nature trip.
The first leg of the trip was to the largest goat farm in Malaysia with over 4,000 counts, which was about one hour drive from Johor Baru. The weather forecast was heavy rain over the weekend. We were greeted with blue skies, white clouds and blazing sun! It was good to be away from city life and in the open fields. The farm tour was informative and enjoyable. It was my first time getting so close to sheep. And I even had a chance to carry one in my arm!
The experience was all so new to me - the ride on the farm bus, the orang asli blowpipe demonstration, feeding the ostrich, walking through the herb garden, identifying the local fruits, savoring a cup of stevia tea, walking through the mushroom farm and resting on a hammock. I was also impressed with the sheepdog performing its run to gather the cattle in the open field, something which I saw only on TV.
Kahang Organic Rice Eco Farm (KOREF) was serene and peaceful. It was refreshing to smell the greenery and get so close to nature. I woke up from my slumber and got ready to get wet. We got on a bamboo raft. It never occurred to me that I had the courage to go on it. The feeling was so serene on the waters. It was therapeutic. My mind and body felt so calm, and my spirit lifted. Water has great healing power.
At dusk, we went into the tropical rainforest jungle for a night trail. The sound of the night creatures was not scary. I realized that what made us scared was our own imagination. We saw a great number of blinking lost fireflies, heard the frogs, beetles, birds, monkeys, kancil and others that I could not name. We were led by our nature guide into a forest path off the main track to observe the rainforest in the night. When the torchlight was switched off, gradually we got used to the darkness. It was not complete darkness. I could see the persons next to me, and the luminous glows on the ground, liken the effect of avatar, which was actually micro-organisms living on the moist dead leaves. Um… I do not know how to describe the physical environment. It was not my physical eyes but my inner being experiencing this encounter with nature. I found myself in one with nature. Surprisingly, I was very much rejuvenated after the night trail. I had never thought I would do such a thing. Why was there so much fear and hesitation in me? Thanks to this team who walked with me and gave me the positive energy to move forward. I found my lost self – the confidence and courage I used to have. It did not matter how many kilometers I had walked in the forest. What I had gained through this experience was immeasurable.
The following morning was another beautiful day. The air was so fresh and nourishing for my whole being, physically and mentally. I love walking into the fields. Along the way, I chanced upon a kingfisher! It flew over the pond and perched on a tree branch for a while, and then flew away. There was also a purple heron amongst the white little egrets. This is what I like about a nature trip – spontaneous encounter. It helps me to let go of my preconceived idea and attachment, and teaches me to accept things as they are. This is one great way to relieve stress. There is a lesson behind every encounter.
I love the fresh organically grown coconut in the farm. It was the perfect drink after a walk. My aunt also picked some berries from the mulberry tree in the farm. The ripe ones were sweet. She told me the fruits were good for detox, being berries are high in anti-oxidant content.
I found the formula for detox, not only physically but emotionally. Outdoor challenge, good laughter and company, sunshine and perspiration, fresh air and simple food. There is no need to fast, purge and do sauna. Exercise, eat well and be happy. Nature has great healing power and will help us sweat and poo naturally.
Contributed by: Lim Wai Cheng/ NPC survivor
Dated 5 December 2011
Survivor since 2005
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