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Showing posts from October, 2019

By the Banks of the Tahan

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The Bumbun hide overlooks a small man-made meadow with two trees at its centre, encircled by a wall of tropical wood and foliage. This brown moss-and-fallen-leaves-covered hideout is a window to this little opening in the rainforest. The two central trees contain rope-tied salt bricks to attract animals into the meadow.

At six o’clock in the morning everything is pitch dark. I peer into the darkness, my mind stuck on my colleague’s narration of a rendezvous with a lone elephant the morning before. He saw the tusker emerge from the wall, gripping at the tender grass blades as he made his way to the salt lick, took a few large chunks out of them, and disappeared into the wall. It has been nearly a decade since an elephant ventured by the Bumbun hide, we’re told. The sky gradually turned a soft blue. If there were a scale to measure the seamless and smooth transition between night and day, it would have to be called by a new name. The scale is fine, immaculate, and works at at-least two …