Day 341. 126km. Pontianak – Senakin

Posted: April 11, 2016 in Cycling, Indonesia
Tags: , , , ,

‘Do you want to try dog?’
We were whisked away on a motorbike to the neighbour’s house. Sitting on the floor circling a metal bowl in the dimly lit room was the family.
‘Please sit.’
He took a piece of bone from the top – a paw.
‘This is foot of dog,’ he informed, grinning from ear to ear.
‘What was the dog’s name?’ I asked.

Signing the guitar with the family

Signing the guitar with the family

This is the Borneo of my childhood dreaming. We are staying with friends Clement met a week ago in a village in the hills – Dayak people. We approached the village in the dying light and drizzle. We marvelled at the beauty of the road as it wound its way between rice fields with a backdrop of a forested mountain with clouds rising from the side like steam from a hot road. After an amazing dinner, we are shown a tool used in hunting to blow a poisoned dart at the prey. Made of bone, it is carved in the form of a dragon. I held this long tool in my hand. One hundred years ago this very tool was used in the dense forest in Borneo. These people were cannibals in the past, we were told. And they ate all animals – pythons, squirrels, mouse deers.

The whole village came and looked on as we were given t-shirts with images of the traditional shield and sword. We were then asked to sign school bags, t-shirts and other things like we were film stars. The girls giggled with excitement as they had photos taken with us with the photo of the pope watching over us from the photo on the wall. This is a Christian village – converted by the Dutch missionaries in the far past. One after the other, and then in groups, we were photoed with everyone in all possible configurations.

The lovely Dayak family

The lovely Dayak family

Clement and I are once more a team.
‘Hello Mister!’ I cried out as I saw him waiting for me in the restaurant at the turnoff. A big hug, and then hours of recounting all our experiences since we parted ways. It’s great to see him again.
The road north from Pontianak along the coast was flat, boring and industrial. From the turnoff, the road passed into the hills. We were entering the real Borneo. Then, out of nowhere, the rain started, and it poured.

Tomorrow I will take some photos of this landscape. The rain prevented me from doing that today.

  1. Burt Reiff says:

    I’m sure that I’m not the only westerner to ask but….I’m assuming you tried the dog so as not to offend…..your opinion?

  2. Holis Sarbeni says:

    the Dayak girls are awesomely cute.

  3. Eliza Waters says:

    Poor ‘Om’ – looking forward to seeing your landscape photos – how about some stunning tropical flora – orchids perhaps? 🙂

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