Thursday, November 10, 2016

Amy Gets Lost: Leaving Sepilok, leaving the orangutans, looking back at the best time of my life!


It’s been just over a week since I left Borneo and I know it’s going to sound terribly cliché but there are honestly not enough words to describe what an amazing time I had whilst I was there.

When I booked the trip I had 19 months to wait and I can’t believe that it’s over!

Borneo is an amazing place, the local people are the friendliest and so kind and generous. They made us feel welcome from the minute we were picked up from the airport, to the minute we left.

All the staff that we met at the centre are such wonderful people, so kind, happy and so funny! We would have a laugh with them all everyday and it was honestly a pleasure to get to know them and work with them.

You can see the passion in every person that works at the centre, they do everything for the well-being of the orangutans that they care for and the bond between the staff and the orangutans at the centre is so touching to see.

They have bought these animals up since they were babies and you can see the love they have for them. There is such a fun, positive, happy atmosphere when you’re working at the centre, everyday there is laughing, joking and singing, it’s really a great place to work!

Next are the group of people who I was lucky enough to share this wonderful experience with…

I honestly couldn’t have been put with a better bunch of people! We all seemed to just click straight away, there was never any awkwardness amongst us and it honestly felt like we were old friends! Living and working together had the potential to be a bit ‘much’ but it just felt like a little family.

It was so nice to be surrounded by people who were genuinely happy for one another, there was no competition or separate groups, everyone was just so happy to be there and to make the most of every opportunity that we were given.

It was lovely finishing work for the day, coming home and the first thing you’d be asked was “how was your day?” and knowing that the person asking you genuinely wanted to hear how you’d got on!

We had some of the best times together and I didn’t feel homesick once while I was there and I think it’s because we all got on so well and it felt like a family dynamic (a big family!) We all had dinner together in the evenings, watched films together, would do each others hair, looked out for each other when we were ill, laughed our heads off and just shared in the excitement of being there and getting stuck in at every opportunity!

I’m so happy that I met such an amazing group of people and I know we’ll all keep in touch, we’ve already talked about reunions and I can’t wait to see them all again and to pick up where we left off!

Lastly, I will miss the orangutans, more than I could have ever imagined. Anyone that knows me knows that I’m a HUGE animal lover and love every animal I meet but being around the orangutans really has made a huge impact on me.

I have never been around such an incredible animal before and I feel privileged to have had such close contact with them and to have shared some very special moments with them.

These beautiful, loving, sweet, friendly animals have been amazing to get to know. Learning all about their different stories, how they came to the centre, their different personalities etc has been wonderful.

Orangutans share 96.4% of the same DNA as us and it’s incredible how similar they are to us, having that close contact and being able to watch them on a day to day basis was remarkable and I loved every day I spent with them.

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